Tampa Police Chief Brian Dugan told the city that the intense six-week hunt for the Seminole Heights serial killer was over after the arrest of former St. John’s walk-on basketball player Howell Emanuel Donaldson III on Tuesday.
He was arrested on four counts of first-degree murder for his alleged involvement in four murders over the last two months, according to the Tampa Bay Times. Over a period of 51 days, four people were randomly shot and killed, putting the whole city on edge.
Donaldson, a recent St. John’s graduate, was a walk-on for the Red Storm in the 2011-2012 season.
Donaldson admitted that he owned the gun but did not admit to the killings, Dugan said at a news conference. Dugan said there was “no apparent motive” to explain the murder spree.
“He was cooperative, but did not tell us why he was doing this,” he said.
Tampa police have made an arrest in a case that raised fears of a serial killer. They say Howell Emanuel Donaldson III admitted to owning the gun used to kill four people in the Seminole Heights neighborhood. Former FBI profiler and criminology professor at the University of South Florida Dr. Bryanna Fox joined CBSN to discuss the case.
Donaldson is suspected of murdering 22-year-old Benjamin Mitchell, 32-year-old Monica Hoffa, 20-year-old Anthony Naiboa and 60-year-old Ronald Felton in Tampa’s Seminole Heights neighborhood. He was caught Tuesday after he arrived at the McDonald’s where he worked and asked his manager to hold a loaded, semiautomatic pistol for him while he went to get a payday loan.
The manager didn’t know what to do with the gun and alerted authorities. When Donaldson arrived back at the McDonald’s, he was taken into custody.
According to the New York Daily News, he studied sports management and in 2016 he allegedly worked as a guest experience host for the Mets, according to his LinkedIn page. He was arrested at least once during his time in New York stint, but the 2014 case in Manhattan is sealed, a police source said.
Donaldsons profile on a website for the St. Johns Red Storm mens team was removed shortly after midnight.
Stay tuned for more on this bizarre story.