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Deputies investigating burglary find body in Valrico home

VALRICO — Deputies discovered a dead man in the bedroom of a home while investigating an apparent burglary Tuesday.

At about 4:20 p.m., deputies were called to 1915 Erin Brooke Drive to investigate what appeared to be a burglary, officials said. Upon searching the home, investigators found Samuel Lee Partin, 61, dead in a bedroom.

It was not clear how Partin died. Officials said there was trauma to the body. They needed to use fingerprints to confirm his identity.

The Hillsborough County Medical Examiner's Office will perform an autopsy to determine how Partin died.

Linda Partin, Samuel's wife, saw broken glass on the floor of their two-story beige home when she arrived home with one of her adult sons Wednesday evening. She thought the house had been burglarized and called 911, officials said.

It does not appear a burglary actually took place. Detectives do not believe the crime was random, and said the victim was likely known to his attackers.

The couple lived in the Brentwood Hills house with at least one of their sons, said Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office spokeswoman Debbie Carter.

No suspects have been named.

Partin has an arrest record dating back to 1971 that includes several charges of cocaine and paraphernalia possession, according to Florida Department of Law Enforcement records.

He was most recently charged with violating the terms of his probation in August.

Neighbor Rosa Diaz, 67, said she didn't see or hear anything unusual until deputies arrived.

"A neighbor told me that they found someone dead inside," she said. "I couldn't believe it."

She said her neighbors were friendly, always saying hello.

David Caldwell, 27, who lives across the street from the Partins, said nothing like this has ever happened in the area.

"It's a quiet, peaceful neighborhood," he said.

Marissa Lang can be reached at mlang@tampabay.com or (813) 226-3386.

Deputies investigating burglary find body in Valrico home 03/28/12 [Last modified: Wednesday, March 28, 2012 7:37pm]
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