Tampa Bay Police are currently in the process of charging 24-year-old Howell Donaldson III with four counts of first-degree murder. Officials believe the man is involved in four fatal shootings that took place in Tampa Bay's Seminole Heights neighborhood over the last few months, CNN reported. The first shooting occurred Oct. 9, WFTV reported.
"Tonight is the beginning of when justice will be served. And then the process will occur, when this individual rots in hell," Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn said during a press conference on Tuesday, WFTV reported. "Tonight, we're bringing someone to justice who doesn't deserve the right to walk amongst us
According to Tampa Police Chief Brian Dugan, police acted on a tip about a man with a gun at a nearby McDonald's. They took the man down to the police station and questioned him in connection with the nearby killings.
Authorities say the victims had very little in common. All were different ages, races and had different occupations. The only thing they had in common was that they were killed, but not robbed, all within a half-mile radius of one another. All of their murders occurred while the victim was walking alone at night.
Although the killer's motives were similar, police refused to call the person a serial killer, CNN reported.
Police previously released videos of the person of interest in both October and November. The videos showed the person wearing a hooded sweatshirt near one of the crime scenes.
When the Tampa Bay Police Department released the video surveillance they also offered a reward of up to $91,000 for anyone who could identify the suspect, a tweet said.
Today marks day 51 of the investigations.
"It's been a long time for the families and for the cops. So, I'm guarded on the whole time but I'm very optimistic," Dugan said Tuesday.
According to Dugan, police received 5,000 tips in relation to the case.