The dean of Keiser University's business school was run over and killed by his own car when he tried to stop it from being towed, Lauderhill police said. NBC 6 reporter Christina Hernandez interviews the tow truck driver and family and friends of Elias Konwufine, who died.
A tow truck driver on Friday gave his account of an accident that caused a car he was towing to fatally run over the car’s owner.
The truck driver, who only wants to be identified by the name Ken, said he was upset the incident turned tragic. "I've been doing this 15 years and it hurt,” he said. “I'm upset about it.”
Police say the man who died, Elias Konwufine, jumped onto the running boards of the Capitol Towing truck and fell under the wheels of his own car as the wrecker pulled away from his Lauderhill home on Wednesday night.
The tow truck driver said things went bad when Konwufine tried to stop him from driving away with his car. The driver said Konwufine “jumped on the running board and held onto my handle of the tow truck, and he started beating on the window to get in to stop me."
He said, “When I turned around, I saw him get back off the truck.”
He said that he later felt “a bump, not knowing he fell off the truck. His car ran him over.”
Konwufine, the 39-year-old dean of Keiser University's business school and a married father, was taken to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
Konwufine's death is a "tremendous loss," Keiser University said in a statement.
"Keiser University is deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Dr. Elias Konwufine,” the statement said in part. “Dr. Konwufine touched and positively shaped the lives of his students, alumni and colleagues in special ways, every day, and collectively our hearts remain heavy as we cope with this tremendous loss."
The incident occurred in the 3300 block of Northwest 67th Way. While it remains under investigation by traffic homicide detectives, Konwufine’s relatives questioned the tow truck driver’s version of events.
Konwufine’s friend, Shoghi Ndobe, said he “really wants justice, especially with the tow company.”
He said Konwufine was “a wonderful person,” saying he was “in disbelief about what happened.”
The incident happened in the Sienna Green Condos neighborhood, where Konwufine’s neighbor, Herbert Taylor, said he is sick of tow trucks.
"They are hungry for money and people have been chasing them all the time. Why are you towing my vehicle?” Taylor said.
But the tow truck driver in Wednesday’s incident said he is just doing his job and doing what the homeowners association pays Superior Roadside Assistance to do.
“We’re just doing our job,” he said. “You do what you got to do and tow the cars. It ain't about money. I'm not out to hurt nobody.”
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