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Sheriff: Naked man hits woman with car, chokes her before being arrested

Deputies say the woman was trying to escape from the man when he hit her with his car. She is in critical condition.
Credit: Brevard County Sheriff's Office
Daniel Patregnani

BREVARD COUNTY, Fla. — A Clearwater man is behind bars after deputies say he intentionally hit a woman with his car, got out and began hitting and choking her.

It happened around 2 p.m. Thursday in the Pineda Causeway area just east of Interstate 95 in Brevard County. 

The Brevard County Sheriff's Office says deputies got a 911 call saying 33-year-old Daniel Patregnani had hit a woman with his car and then had gotten out and was on top of the woman choking her. 

When deputies got to the scene, they say Patregnani had been restrained by off-duty law enforcement officers who had just happened to be in the area when the attack happened. 

The woman was then rushed to the hospital and had emergency surgery. She is still in critical condition. 

As the investigation continued, deputies say they learned Patregnani and the woman were inside the car on the Pineda Causeway. Deputies say at some point, the woman got out of the car and began running away. 

That's when Patregnani crossed several lanes of traffic toward the woman and intentionally hit her with his car, the agency said. Deputies say Patregnani, who was naked, then got out of the car, dragged the woman on the ground, hitting her and choking her. 

Eventually, the off-duty officers came to the woman's aid and restrained Patregnani until deputies could arrive, the agency said. 

Patregnani was taken to the hospital as well for treatment but was later released into custody. He is charged with attempted first-degree murder. 

If you or someone you know is experiencing domestic violence, support is out there. Reach out to the Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233).