Damion Tillman, 23, Keven Springfield, 30, and Brandon Rollins, 27, had gone fishing at a spot down Lake Streety Road in Frostproof when Rollins made a frantic call to his father at 10:06 p.m., according to Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd.
"[Brandon's father] receives an emergency call from his son and all he can make out is, 'Help,'" Judd said during a press conference Monday. "The dad jumps out of bed, dresses and runs to the area as quickly as he can ... they're all shot up. It's a massacre. He runs to his son's side and he and his son are there in an intimate moment with his son actively dying, and his son is saying some things to him which obviously we are not releasing to the public at this point."
Grady said that by the time first responders reached the scene, all three men were dead. Police believe there might have been more than one perpetrator in the attack.
"Our detectives have literally been working 24/7 since the moment we received the first 911 call in order to solve this horrific case," Judd said. "This is a sad case. They're all sad, but this one's particularly sad. You've got three best friends. What is more wholesome than going fishing near Frostproof on a Friday night? And that's what they were doing."
Grady described the area where the killings occurred as "exceptionally remote," explaining that "it's orange groves and cow pastures and a beautiful lake and a community, a quiet community." The killings of the three young men, who are all from Frostproof, have left residents there shocked and heartbroken.
The reward for information leading to the arrest of a suspect or suspects was increased from $5,000 Saturday to $30,000 Monday, Grady said, and investigations have received more than 100 tips so far.
"Some of them look promising, some of them are absolutely ridiculous, but hey, we'll take them all, we'll sort through them, because we need the information," he added.
The Polk County Sheriff's Department asks anyone with information about the case to contact them at 863-298-6200 or 1-800-226-TIPS. Information can be shared anonymously.