By: Associated Press
May 24, 2016
OPA-LOCKA, Fla. (AP) -- A Florida city official died in a suspicious single-vehicle crash a day before he was scheduled to surrender in a criminal corruption case.
Authorities say 43-year-old Opa-locka city commissioner Terence Pinder died Tuesday after the city-owned vehicle he was driving crashed into a tree. The tree was located in an undeveloped part of Miami-Opa-locka Executive Airport, far from any major road. Police say they are investigating whether the crash was deliberate.
The Miami-Dade State Attorney's Office confirmed Pinder had planned to surrender Wednesday to face bribery and other corruption charges. An arrest warrant says Pinder accepted thousands of dollars to help a businessman establish a recycling transfer station.
The death is the latest blow to Opa-locka, which is under a broader FBI corruption investigation and struggling with its finances.