1 dead, 2 hospitalized after suspects open fire near grocery store

Posted at 9:17 AM, May 16, 2017
and last updated 2017-05-16 11:39:31-04

One person has died, two additional people are in the hospital after suspects opened fire outside of a grocery store Tuesday morning in Sebring. Police believe the shooting may have been in retaliation to a shooting in Avon Park, Florida early Sunday morning

Officers of the Sebring Police Department responded to the area of Olds Grocery Store near the 400 block of Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard just after midnight.

Upon arrival in the area, responding officers learned that Theodore King, 56, of Sebring had been shot in the right leg. King was transported from the scene to Highlands Regional Medical Center where he died as the result of the injuries he received during the shooting.

While investigating the shooting police determined that 21-year-old Verkiesha Charmaine Massaline of Sebring had been shot in the right calf, and 61-year-old Jimmie Olds had been shot in the right leg above the knee.

RELATED | Five people shot at large gathering at Avon Park intersection

Both Massaline and Olds were transported to Highlands Regional Medical Center for medical treatment. Olds was flown to Lakeland Regional Medical Center for treatment for his injuries and Massaline was treated and later released.

During the investigation, police learned that the suspects were driving north on Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard in a dark colored, newer model, four-door Chevrolet car. As the car approached the front of Olds’ Grocery Store, the occupants of the vehicle began shooting at a crowd of people who were near the front of the building. The vehicle may possibly have been followed by a dark colored unknown make or model SUV.

Though the motive of the shooting has not been determined at this time, investigators believe it may have been in retaliation to a shooting that occurred Sunday morning in Avon Park.

Anyone with information pertaining to this shooting is asked to contact Detective Sergeant Thomas Gilliard at (863) 471-5108. Additionally, information relating to this incident may be reported to Heartland Crime Stoppers.