Police Hunt Possible Serial Killer After 3rd Murder in Less Than 2 Weeks: 'Someone's Terrorizing The Neighborhood'
The killer's third victim was a 20-year-old with autism.
Police in Florida may be dealing with a serial killer after three people were found murdered in less than two weeks in the same neighborhood.
"Someone's terrorizing the neighborhood," said Tampa Police Interim Chief Brian Dugan at a news conference Friday. "We're still sifting through evidence…We think they're related.”
The shooter murdered a third victim, 20-year-old Anthony Naiboa, on Thursday night in the Seminole Heights neighborhood, police said. Naiboa, who had autism, had gotten off the bus at the wrong stop on his way home from work and was walking home when he was gunned down, according to reports.
Officers who were patrolling the neighborhood heard the gunshots and quickly found Naiboa’s body, police said.
"This person, whoever did it, was able to sneak away," Chief Dugan said.
Naiboa was killed just 50 feet away from the bus stop where another man, 22-year-old Benjamin Mitchell, was killed on October 9th, police said. On October 13, Tampa city workers also found the body of Monica Hoffa, 32, in an empty field. Police said she was shot and neighbors reportedly heard gunshots the day before.
Police have increased their presence in the neighborhood amid the slayings. In each of the shootings, the victim was alone and was not robbed, police said.
“Enough is enough,” Dugan said in a plea to the killer during a Thursday press conference. “I don't know what your motive is. I don't know what your problem is. There's been enough carnage. You have severely affected some families.”
Tampa police released surveillance video of someone they believe may be integral to solving Mitchell’s murder. The person, who was walking alone near the area and time of the murder, was wearing long pants, a long jacket and a hood, police said.
Police have warned the community to be aware of their surroundings and travel in groups. He also asked residents to turn on their porch lights.
"If you're walking alone, you're either a suspect or a potential victim, and that's what they need to remember in this neighborhood," Dugan said.
Police asked that anyone with any other information about the crimes to come forward. Crime Stoppers is offering an $18,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of the suspect.
Anyone with information can call 1-800-873-TIPS (8477).
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