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News Story
Updated: 09/21/2017 06:36:38PM

Two Hardee County LEOs die in crash Sunday

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By JAY MEISEL

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WAUCHULA — Two Hardee County law enforcement officials died in a two-car collision Sunday at State Road 66 and Old Crewsville Road.

The accident occurred as one employee was leaving the Correctional Institute, while another was headed to work. Joseph J. Ossman, 53, of Sebring and Julie Ann Bridges, 42, of Wauchula, died in the accident.

Ossman, a Corrections Institute officer, was traveling westbound on State Road 66 approaching Old Crewsville Road. Bridges, a Hardee County Sheriff’s Office deputy, was driving a marked Hardee County Sheriff’s Deputy vehicle, heading eastbound on State Road 66.

The front of Ossman’s vehicle and the front of Bridges’ vehicle struck. After impact, the front of Ossman’s vehicle traveled off the roadway onto the north grass shoulder and came to a final rest facing north. Bridge’s vehicle rotated and came to final rest in the intersection facing west. The contributing cause of this crash remains under investigation.


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