Residents of Tampa’s Seminole Heights, are being urged by Police to maintain their normal routines as many are starting to live in a state of fear due to the recent killings. “My wife is scared, my kids are scared, we have to be locked up in the house, which is not right, you know,” said Arroyo.
The community is right to be wary as there have been 3 deaths within 10 days all within one mile. Police are currently baffled and do not have any suspects. The only thing that the victims have in common so far is that they were traveling alone at night. “Their proximity and the timeframe they are related” Rian Dugan Tampa Police Chief stated.
Chief Dugan claims that officers heard the gunshots that killed Anthony Naiboa while on patrol, but they were unable to get to the scene before the killer left. The previous two victims Benjamin Mitchell and Monica Hoffa were killed in a similar manner. Police are warning the people of the neighborhood to walk in pairs and they are handing out porch lights.
“You can imagine the frustration of these officers to hear gunshots and not be able to find this person,” the interim chief said. “[The victim] was in the prime of his life and was taken instantly.”
Investigators have few leads. Officers have blanketed the neighborhood, are talking to residents and showing them the video of the man walking.
“I’m convinced we are going to catch this person,” Dugan said. It’s frustrating and it makes me angry they are able to vanish so quickly.”
The FBI and the Hillsborough and Pinellas County sheriff’s officials have pledged support to the investigation. Crime Stoppers of Tampa Bay and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) has offered a $25,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of a suspect.
Anyone with information is asked to call Crime Stoppers of Tampa Bay at 1-800-873-8477 (TIPS)