NewsHillsborough County


Death penalty sought against Riverview man accused of brutally killing girlfriend, daughter

Posted at 6:18 PM, May 24, 2018
and last updated 2018-05-24 23:21:46-04

TAMPA, Fla. — State prosecutors announced that they plan to seek the death penalty against a Riverview man accused of violently killing his girlfriend and their 9-year-old daughter and trying to kill their 8-year-old son.

Ronnie Oneal III, 29, has pleaded not guilty to the murders of Kenyatta Barron, 33, and 9-year-old Ron’Niveya Oneal. He also pleaded not guilty to the attempted murder of his 8-year-old son and arson charges related to the attacks.

The Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office says that the night of the March 19 attacks, a woman called 911 pleading for help after being shot. In the background of the call, they say a man was yelling, "Allah Akbar!"

Deputies: Riverview man yelled ‘Allah Akbar’ as he carried out attacks on his children, girlfriend

When deputies arrived at the home, they found Barron and Ron’Niveya brutally murdered. They say Oneal killed them before setting fire to their home. 

The 8-year-old boy, Ronnie Oneal IV, survived the attack. Sheriff's officials say the boy emerged from the fire, severely burned with multiple stab wounds. He allegedly told authorities, "My father shot my mother."

When deputies arrested Oneal, they say he shouted "Allah Akbar" as he was placed in the back of a deputy cruiser. The phrase means "God is greatest" in Arabic.

Oneal's next court hearing is set for May 31.