Florida corrections officer arrested after street-racing crash leaves 1 seriously hurt in Marion County: FHP

An Ocala man is facing serious charges after leaving the scene of a crash with injuries following a street race in Marion County, the Florida Highway Patrol announced in a news release Wednesday. 

Jacob Carmack, 23, who is employed as a correctional officer with CoreCivic in Citrus County, was arrested Tuesday and booked into the Marion County jail on charges of reckless driving, leaving the scene of a crash and racing on highways, troopers said. 

On Nov. 18, troopers said a Ford Mustang and a Chevrolet Corvette were street racing on State Road 200. FHP said they were speeding, making multiple lane changes, and driving recklessly.

"The Mustang had already been driving erratically, like three miles back. I know this because he almost hit the rear end of my Jeep," Wendy Bauer, a crash witness, told FOX 35 News. 

While in the area of SW 80th Street, the Corvette struck a Toyota Prius, before traveling off the road and crashing into a utility pole and a tree. The Prius remained in the median. 

"The Mustang started going, I assume he jerked the wheel to the right," Bauer said. "When he did so, he lost control of the Vette and it started rolling. Sending it up into the electrical pole, all the transformers started exploding and sparking."

Photos shared by FHP show the Corvette was torn into pieces following the collision. Its driver, a 38-year-old Ocala man, was seriously hurt after being ejected from the vehicle. 


Jacob Carmack (Photo via Marion County Sheriff's Office)

Authorities said the driver of the Mustang – later identified as Carmack following investigative efforts and tips from the public – briefly parked and hid his car behind a local business parking lot. He then checked on the driver of the Corvette before leaving the scene, FHP said. 

"What's crazy is as I'm helping this guy, I looked up when the fire department came and took him from me, I asked another gentleman where did that guy in the pink shirt go? Nobody knew," Bauer said. "Little did I know, he had sneaked off while everybody was attending to the injured guy on the ground."


Closer view of the damaged Corvette involved in the street-racing crash that left one person injured (Photo via Florida Highway Patrol)

The investigation remains active and ongoing. 

Editor's note: Initially, the Marion County Sheriff's Office did not provide Carmack's mugshot, citing a Florida law that protects the public records of law enforcement officers. After further review, however, MCSO released his photo because he is employed with a private agency that has contracted with the state or a county to manage a prison or jail, which is not entitled to exemption.