Florida Man Tried to Race Police Officer on Highway

The officer pulled over Connor Michael Proleika, 20, of Tampa, and arrested him on a charge of racing on a highway, which is a misdemeanor.

Tampa Bay Times, St. Petersburg, Fla.
Connor Michael Proleika
Connor Michael Proleika
Clearwater Police Department

CLEARWATER, Florida -- At about 2 a.m. on Friday, a man driving across the Courtney Campbell Causeway revved his engine and tried to bait a fellow motorist into racing him.

Unbeknownst to the man with a need for speed, the driver he was trying to bait was a Clearwater police officer.

The officer pulled over Connor Michael Proleika, 20, of Tampa, and arrested him on a charge of racing on a highway, which is a misdemeanor. Worse for Proleika, the arrest resulted in him violating probation on previous charges of grand theft and possession of a controlled substance, which are felonies.

An arrest report chronicles how the officer was driving east on the Courtney Campbell at about 2 a.m. Friday when the incident occurred. The report does not indicate what kind of vehicle Proleika was driving or if the officer was driving in a marked police vehicle.

The officer wrote in the report that Proleika revved his engine and tried to “bait” him into racing. Proleika then took off and reached a top speed of 124 mph, according to the officer’s report.

When the officer pulled him over, Proleika said “he was just trying to go fast and didn’t know I was a police officer,” the arrest report states.

As of Sunday morning, Proleika was being held in the Pinellas County jail. A written plea of not guilty had been entered on his behalf.

More Florida man: Florida Man Challenge: Which ridiculous headline matches your birthday?

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