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ICYMI: Investigators Solve Case of Deceased Woman Hit by Vehicles on I-4

On Thursday, January 26th at approximately 11:30pm, the Orlando Police Department received several calls of vehicles hitting what appeared to be a human body on I-4 eastbound near the Orange Blossom Trail exit.

When officers arrived on scene, an adult female victim was found deceased on the interstate and an unattended crashed vehicle was located at the off-ramp, from I-4 onto Orange Blossom Trail southbound. The victim was identified as Tequilla Shepherd.

Orlando homicide Detectives have been working to determine what led to this incident and the death of Shepherd. Through investigative means, it was found that Shepherd was traveling in her vehicle as a passenger, which was being operated by her boyfriend, Albert Berry Ayala. Detectives were able to establish Ayala was in control of the vehicle when it crashed on the off-ramp from I-4 to Orange Blossom Trail southbound. Probable cause was established and an arrest warrant was obtained.

The Orange County Sheriff’s Office later located and arrested Ayala for an unrelated incident. He was then transported to OPD headquarters, where he confessed to picking up Shepherd from her workplace at which time they got into an argument. The argument was escalating when Shepherd spontaneously jumped from the vehicle while traveling on I-4.

Police said this was confirmed by a witness driving in the same direction, behind the suspect vehicle. Ayala attempted to exit the interstate to turn around to get to Shepherd, but lost control of the vehicle on the off-ramp, causing it to crash. Ayala then fled the scene.

Albert Ayala was charged with Leaving the Scene of a Crash with Death, Leaving the Scene of a Crash with Property Damage, and Driving While License Suspended.

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