Former Hernando Sheriff's lieutenant, son charged following road rage incident

By Laurie Davison, Reporter
Last Updated: Friday, December 29, 2017, 5:47 PM EST

A former Hernando County Sheriff's Office lieutenant and his son are facing charges after officials say they attacked a man following a road rage incident.

  • Names initially withheld on arrest reports
  • Victim says men claimed he was trying to kill family member
  • Both men facing battery, false imprisonment charges

The victim in the case does not want to be identified. He said he's afraid of retaliation.

He told the Pasco County Sheriff's Office that a woman cut him off when he was turning on U.S. 19 on Wednesday afternoon.

He admits that he honked at the woman and made an obscene gesture at her. He said he kept driving and thought that was the end of it.

"I thought pretty much that she was going her way and I was going my way and that was probably the end of it," he said.

When he pulled over at a gas station at a nearby intersection, he said a man and his son, later identified by the Pasco County Sheriff's office as former Hernando Sheriff's Lieutenant Peter Ciucci and Nicholas Tisevich-Ciucci, blocked him in and confronted him. He claims they accused him of trying to kill their family member.

"I denied that," the victim explained. "I felt boxed in my car and I said to them, 'Either you guys are going to leave or I'm going to call the cops.'"

When one of the men noticed him attempting to call 911, he allegedly reached in his car and pushed the phone out of his hand.

The victim said he got out to try to go inside the store for help. He said that's when the men started punching him and pushed him to the ground.

According to an arrest report, things turned even more violent.

"There was choking, strangling, the son held the victim down while the father continued to beat him," said Amy Marinec with the Pasco County Sheriff's Office.

"There's about seven minutes of a physical confrontation," said Pasco Sheriff's Office Captain James Steffens. "He lost the fight. This fight was over pretty much from the beginning and he was down on the ground in a chokehold and he wasn't moving."

The victim has cuts and bruises, and said he's sore from the altercation.

"This was just two men who showed up and jumped me, to be honest with you. It wasn't a fair fight, not at all," he said.

Ciucci is charged with burglary battery, tampering with a witness and false imprisonment.

Tisevich-Ciucci, meanwhile, is charged with vehicle burglary, simple battery and false imprisonment. Both men's names were initially withheld from arrest reports.

"You're not above the law," said the alleged victim, sending a message to the men he claims assaulted him. "You're not above the law, even though you're retired law enforcement, you're not above the law."