Police release video of South Howard Ave. robbery, kidnapping

Posted at 8:47 AM, Dec 04, 2016
and last updated 2016-12-05 17:25:04-05

Tampa police are investigating a robbery and kidnapping that occurred in Tampa's SoHo entertainment district early Saturday morning, authorities said. 

The police said the offense occurred in the Green Lemon parking lot, located in the 900 block of South Howard Avenue shortly after 2 a.m. Saturday.

A woman told police officers she had been been with friends in the SoHo district and was returning to her vehicle, a Tampa Police Department news release states.

An unidentified man approached the woman from behind and struck her in the head. 

The man pushed the victim into her car and drove away with her inside. The victim was robbed and left in her vehicle. She drove herself home but was unable to tell police where she and the car were left.

She reported the incident later on Saturday afternoon. The victim, who received minor injuries, is safe. Police say they have no reason not to believe her story.

Tampa police have released video of a man suspected in the incident.

The person believed responsible for the incident was described as a heavy set black man with short hair and a beard. He was last seen wearing a hooded sweatshirt and dark athletic shoes.

Anyone with information about the incident is asked to contact the Tampa Police Department Major Crimes Bureau at (813) 276-3200.

Crime Stoppers of Tampa Bay is offering a reward of up to $3,000 for information that leads to the arrest of a suspect. Those with information are asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-873-TIPS (8477), to report anonymously online at

This is the fourth attack/robbery we've covered in the SOHO area this year. In May, there were two separate robberies where valet workers were held at gunpoint outside of Bern's Steakhouse. That same month, a woman was attacked while out for a jog in the area. She was hit in the head with a wrench, but was able to fight off the attacker.

All of the suspect descriptions are different and police have not made an arrest in any of the crimes.