Suspicion of Tampa serial killer Howell Donaldson III charged in the Seminole Heights murders, prosecutors say
Thursday, December 07, 2017
ABC News Radio
(TAMPA, Fla.) – A Florida grand jury has charged Tampa's alleged serial murder with four counts of premeditated murder with a firearm, according to state prosecutors.
The Tampa Police Department previously indicted Howard Donaldson III on four counts of murder in connection with the four shooting deaths that occurred between October 9 and November 1
The grand jury has filed the indictment formally accusing Donaldson, state prosecutor Andrew Warren told a news conference on Thursday.
"The indictment means that the grand jury has found probable cause, that the defendant committed each of these four murders," he said.
Warren promised the Hillsborough County District Attorney The office will be "as transparent as possible every step of the way during the indictment." The prosecutor's office contacted the families of the victims to inform them that the charges had been filed, he said.
"My office continues to work to prosecute this case to the fullest extent of the law," he said. "I would like to remind everyone, keep your thoughts and prayers for the victims and their families at this time."
Donaldson was arrested on November 28 after his manager at a McDonald's in Ybor City alerted police about a McDonald's bag containing a firearm, which authorities later They matched the weapon used to kill the four victims.
On Thursday, a Hillsborough County judge ordered his parents, Rosita Donaldson and Howell Donaldson Jr., to show the cause why they should not be detained. The contempt for refusing to provide testimony to state prosecutors on Tuesday, despite being notified with a subpoena ordering them to do so, according to court documents. They would not answer questions about the background, developmental history, mode of transport, possession of weapons or the mood of your child, the motion indicates.
The Donaldsons received "full advice" on their actions and are "ready to take the consequence," "their attorney, Ralph Fernandez, told ABC News on Wednesday.
Currently, Donaldson is being held without bail in a Hillsborough County Jail – His indictment has been scheduled for December 12 and he has not yet filed a guilty plea.
It is unclear if Donaldson obtained a defense attorney.
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