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Tampa, Florida serial killer November 2017 *ARREST*

Discussion in 'Crimes' started by noZme, Oct 21, 2017.

  1. SheWhoMustNotBeNamed

    SheWhoMustNotBeNamed Administrator Staff Member

    24-year-old man arrested in Tampa serial killings

    Police arrested a man late Tuesday and said they will charge him with murder in a string of killings that have terrorized a neighborhood of Tampa.

    Tampa Police Chief Brian Dugan announced at a news conference that Howell Emanuel Donaldson, 24, would be charged with four counts of first degree murder.

    Police detained Donaldson earlier Tuesday after a tip that he had a gun at a McDonald’s restaurant.

    Dugan said the department had received more than 5,000 tips. He thanked those who called in the tip that led to Donaldson’s arrest. No further information was provided about Donaldson.


    Suspect to be charged with murder in four Tampa killings

    Police in Tampa, Florida, said Tuesday night that they plan to charge a man who was detained at a McDonald's with four counts of first-degree murder in connection with a series of shooting deaths that authorities had said could be the work of a serial killer.

    Acting on a tip about someone with a gun, officers found the man, identified as Howell E. Donaldson III, 24, at the McDonald's in Tampa's Ybor City neighborhood, Police Chief Brian Dugan told reporters.

    Florida records indicated that Donaldson has no criminal past beyond a handful of traffic citations.

    "Tonight, goodness has won," Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn said. "Tonight in the battle between darkness and light, light has won."


    Uno2Much, GatorD, Paradise and 3 others like this.
  2. SheWhoMustNotBeNamed

    SheWhoMustNotBeNamed Administrator Staff Member

    Man arrested for Florida serial killings played basketball at St. John’s

    Florida cops on Tuesday busted a former St. John’s basketball player suspected of being the serial killer linked to four murders in one Tampa neighborhood, officials said.

    A tip about a gun at a McDonald’s led to the arrest of 24-year-old Howell Emanuel “Trai” Donaldson III, police announced.

    Donaldson had a brief stint as a walk-on player in the 2011-12 season for the Red Storm, school sources said. The point guard from Alonso HS in Tampa never played in any games.

    A LinkedIn page apparently belonging to Donaldson said he graduated the Queens university in 2015 with a degree in sports management.

    The profile also said he worked for the Mets in the 2016 season as a “guest experience host,” scanning tickets for season subscribers and VIPs and operating elevators.


    Uno2Much, Paradise, spike and 2 others like this.
  3. Cousin Dupree

    Cousin Dupree Platinum Member

    He doesn't look like a psycho. He just looks like a nice kid. I guess you can't judge a book by it's cover.
  4. TripleA

    TripleA Zoo Keeper

    Wow - glad that they have him in custody but I am really curious on the motive.
  5. Kimster

    Kimster Director Staff Member

    Exactly what I was thinking!
    Paradise and Cousin Dupree like this.
  6. Kimster

    Kimster Director Staff Member

  7. GatorD

    GatorD Well-Known Member

    Someone who is living off a McDonalds paycheck is going to have a nice Christmas.

    Surely they will get the reward money!
  8. TripleA

    TripleA Zoo Keeper

    What happened to make this kid snap? He does look like a nice guy with a happy smile. There must be a reason.
    GatorD, spike, Uno2Much and 1 other person like this.
  9. SheWhoMustNotBeNamed

    SheWhoMustNotBeNamed Administrator Staff Member

    Suspected Tampa serial killer purchased gun 6 days before the 1st murder, police say

    The 24-year-old man charged in the serial killings of four people in the same Tampa neighborhood allegedly bought the firearm used in the shootings just six days before the first murder occurred, police said.

    The Florida Department of Law Enforcement and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives discovered cartridge casings at all four crime scenes that matched the .40-caliber Glock firearm possessed by the suspect, according to police.

    Police also said that call detail records for Donaldson's cellphone were geographically associated with a cell tower near the locations of the first three slayings, which occurred between Oct. 9 and Oct. 19.

    Cousin Dupree, Uno2Much and spike like this.
  10. SheWhoMustNotBeNamed

    SheWhoMustNotBeNamed Administrator Staff Member

    Affidavit: 24-year-old arrested in Tampa serial killings born in Charlotte

    A 24-year-old man was arrested Tuesday in connection with four fatal shootings in Florida, Tampa Police Chief Brian Dugan said, and he may have ties to Charlotte.

    Cori Foster, a former classmate of Donaldson, described him as “having a big smile, a nice guy, who was athletic and played basketball.

    Foster was shocked to hear that Donaldson had been charged as a serial killer.

    “People did expect him to do big things with his life, so it just doesn't make sense,” Foster said. “He didn’t seem like that kind of guy at all.”

    Four people were shot and killed in the Seminole Heights neighborhood since Oct. 9, but detectives had not determined Donaldson's connection to the area, nor have they established a motive, Dugan said.

    While investigators have not determined why Donaldson allegedly targeted the Seminole Heights neighborhood, Buckhorn said he was glad the man was off the street.

    Cousin Dupree, Uno2Much and spike like this.
  11. Uno2Much

    Uno2Much Bronze Member

    Friends stunned by arrest of suspected serial killer in Seminole Heights

    He was quiet, cocky, easy-going, his friends remembered. Average. He always had a basketball in his hands. He went from Alonso High School to St. John’s University in New York City, where he practiced for a brief time with the Division I team.

    He was a friend with whom many had lost touch, but not for any particular reason — people just grow old, and apart.

    He graduated in January, according to the university, returned to Tampa and bounced between jobs . He was fired from a customer support gig for absenteeism. He started working at the McDonald’s in Ybor City, where, police said, he left the gun used in the killings with a colleague who notified an officer Tuesday.

    The police chief said Donaldson, 24, was calm and pleasant when he talked to detectives. He admitted being the only one to ever possess the gun, but he didn’t confess to the killings.
    Around Easter, Keyworth said, he and a group of buddies got together for a friendly game of pickup. When Donaldson was fouled, they saw rage in his eyes.

    "His demeanor was different," Keyworth said. "It was something that was talked about among our close group of friends."

    Read more: http://www.tampabay.com/news/public...d-serial-killer-in-Seminole-Heights_163124106
  12. Uno2Much

    Uno2Much Bronze Member

    Tampa killings: Police confident suspect in custody is behind four shootings

    Dugan said police aren't sure what Donaldson's relationship is with the neighborhood of Seminole Heights, where all four murders took place. Donaldson told police he isn't familiar with the area and isn't associated with anyone there, according to a police report.

    Dugan said that Donaldson, who was cooperating with police, had been charged with four counts of first-degree murder but that evidence still needed to be collected and that there is a "tremendous" amount of work ahead.

    Read more: https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-new...suspect-custody-behind-four-shootings-n824901
  13. Kimster

    Kimster Director Staff Member

    This is just so surprising! I can't get over it.
    Cousin Dupree, Uno2Much and spike like this.
  14. Cousin Dupree

    Cousin Dupree Platinum Member

    He looks like a guy I would've liked to be friends with. Hopefully they'll get to the cause of his rage.
    SheWhoMustNotBeNamed likes this.
  15. Uno2Much

    Uno2Much Bronze Member

  16. SheWhoMustNotBeNamed

    SheWhoMustNotBeNamed Administrator Staff Member

    Court to Seal Documents in FL Serial Murder Cases

    A judge on Friday ordered search warrants and other documents related to the serial killings in Seminole Heights to be sealed until discovery or further notice.

    The State Attorney’s Office filed the motion with Thirteenth Judicial Circuit Court in Hillsborough County on Thursday, citing safety and assurance of fair proceedings as reasons the records should be sealed.

    “The search warrant and related documents contain sensitive and/or confidential information that is part of an ongoing investigation,” the petition reads.

    A judge on Thursday ordered that Donaldson will be held without bond.


    GatorD, Uno2Much, spike and 1 other person like this.
  17. SheWhoMustNotBeNamed

    SheWhoMustNotBeNamed Administrator Staff Member

    Parents of accused Seminole Heights killer speak out

    The parents of accused serial killer Howell “Trai” Donaldson spoke out Friday afternoon, three days after their son was arrested on four counts of first-degree murder.

    The 24-year-old’s parents, Rosita and Howell Donaldson Jr., spoke from their attorney’s South Tampa office Friday afternoon. His mother Rosita said she had been praying for the families of those four victims as the search for the killer progressed, not knowing her son would be accused of their murders.

    That’s an answer police say they didn’t get from the suspect on Tuesday when he was arrested. But investigators said he did admit to owning the gun that has now been identified as the murder weapon.

    His parents said the horrible details of the crimes don’t sound like anything the son they know would be responsible for.

    “Everybody is in disbelief,” Rosita said. “Anybody that knows Trai knows that’s not Trai. He doesn’t have the personality of that characteristic that they’re giving him. That’s not my son. That’s my baby. That’s not my son.”


  18. SheWhoMustNotBeNamed

    SheWhoMustNotBeNamed Administrator Staff Member

    I hate this. Just like the Shawn Hornbeck case. "Oh you really look like that missing boy!" CALL IT IN DAMN IT!

    Coworkers teased suspected serial killer about looking like a serial killer

    People who worked with Howell Emanuel Donaldson III, the man suspected in the Seminole Heights murders, teased him about looking like the killer, according to one of his co-workers.

    Our news partners at The Tampa Bay Times report Gail Rogers, who worked at the Ybor City McDonald's with Donaldson, said co-workers would tease him and say he was the killer because he looked like photos of the suspect.

    "I called him the killer to his face," Rogers was quoted as saying. "He didn't like that."

  19. SheWhoMustNotBeNamed

    SheWhoMustNotBeNamed Administrator Staff Member

    Welp. That's a new one...

    Phony sign language interpreter used at Seminole Heights killer arrest press conference

    A huge arrest was made in the Seminole Heights homicides case on Nov. 28, but many in the deaf community were left in the dark thanks to a phony interpreter.

    "She was standing there twisting her hands back and forth. I could tell automatically that interpreters don't do that," said Betti Bonni, a certified deaf interpreter.

    Derlyn Roberts showed up at Tampa Police on that night, but as Chief Dugan spoke about the capture of a serial killer suspect, those in the deaf community could tell the interpreter wasn't making any sense.

    "Most of the time it just looked like she was signing but not using actual signs," said USF professor Rachelle Settambrino. "When she was spelling words out, she wasn't spelling anything at all. They were just gibberish more than anything."

    Monica Hoffa's mother, whose daughter was one of the victims, was at the presser relying on that interpreter.

    "I know the deaf mother of one of the victims' of the serial killer, she was standing there. She was standing right there and the interpreter was signing in a way that was incomprehensible," Bonni said.

    A spokesperson for TPD says he didn't do his due diligence, and did not question Roberts when she showed up as an ASL interpreter.

    The city relies on a pre-paid contractor for interpreters, and police assumed she was sent over.

    Police say what she did isn't a crime. Instead it's an ethical violation.

    noZme, Cousin Dupree and spike like this.
  20. SheWhoMustNotBeNamed

    SheWhoMustNotBeNamed Administrator Staff Member

    Parents of accused Seminole Heights killer refuse to testify against their son

    The parents of Howell "Trai" Donaldson, III refuse to testify against him.

    Donaldson is the man accused in four Seminole Heights killings. Now his parents may be in trouble with the law themselves.

    They could be served with a notice that they are in contempt of court as early as Wednesday. Their lawyer, Ralph Fernandez says a court hearing is scheduled for 10 a.m. Thursday.

    They were subpoenaed by prosecutors to give information about the background of their son. They only agreed to give the basics but would say nothing about their son.

    That includes any mental health information or anything about what he was like in the days leading up to the shootings.

    Fernandez says it is unreasonable to expect parents to be able to testify against their son.


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