Tampa police recently arrested a man who was sleeping in a vacant house. After checking current warrants, police learned they had arrested the suspect in two unsolved crimes. Further checking indicated that the man may be a suspect in the murder of an Orlando grandmother.
The arrest in the vacant house was triggered by the complaint of a witness. When police arrived at the house, the man alleged to have been sleeping there tried to escape by running away, but police caught him after a short foot chase. The man was arrested on two outstanding warrants that accused him of stabbing a man in the face in an Orlando apartment and stabbing a man in Tampa on the evening before he was arrested for squatting in the vacant house. Police added charges of burglary of an unoccupied dwelling and one count of resisting an officer.
Police are investigating the suspect’s possible connection with the death of a woman who is alleged to have been his former girlfriend. An Orlando woman called 911 after she spotted two young children wandering through her neighborhood by themselves. When they were asked where they lived, the children led the woman to the house that had been occupied by the man arrested in Tampa and his girlfriend. The two young children, ages two and three, were the woman’s grandchildren. When the neighbor entered the house, she found the body of the girlfriend/grandmother inside. Police are still investigating this death, but the suspect from Tampa and his dead girlfriend had a long history of domestic violence.
This case has many complicating factors. An experienced criminal defense attorney may be able to find significant loopholes or weaknesses that could lay the basis for an acquittal or a favorable plea bargain.