SEMINOLE HEIGHTS, Fla. - It only took 60 seconds for Tampa police to respond to the murder of Ronald Felton. They set up a perimeter, searched with K-9s, went door to door with SWAT teams, the FBI assisting, and had their helicopter searching in the air.
But, for all of their hard work and swift response the man believed to be behind 4 murders in Seminole Heights got away.
ABC Action News reporter Michael Paluska asked the father of Anthony Naiboa, the third person murdered in Seminole Heights, how he felt knowing police weren’t able to catch the killer.
“I feel like saying it they blew it again he got away,” Casimar Naiboa said. “Another family is suffering. It’s heartbreaking this guy is getting away.”
At a regularly schedule neighborhood watch meeting for Sector E, Tampa Police Chief Brian Dugan talked to a crowd of concerned citizens, who normally wouldn’t fill the Ragan Park Community Center.
“We are not happy. This is not the way we protect our neighborhoods…we are not ready to give up,” Dugan said.
Naiboa asked the chief if detectives are using polygraph tests during their investigation.
“The few people we have interviewed, we have checked out, their alibi’s checked out their stories. And unfortunately, it’s not leading us to there becoming solid suspects,” Dugan said.
Naiboa said he knows police are working hard around the clock to catch his son’s killer. Since the 20-year-old Naiboa was shot and killed, his father says he’s had little hope the nightmare for his family and the community was close to coming to an end.
“Pain, pain inside like you are reliving everything again,” Naiboa said. “It’s so frustrating. I want justice for my son...he was a good kid. I want to fight for him even if I go to the street and they kill me too,” Naiboa said.
Police are still urging people to remain in doors at night and to not go out alone. The chief said the killer is stalking people who are distracted and murdering them in cold blood.
Police have not used the word serial killer to describe the Seminole Heights murders. But, according to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, these slayings meet their definition:
Serial Murder: The unlawful killing of two or more victims by the same offender(s), in separate events.