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Man arrested in Plant City killing after standoff with deputies

PLANT CITY — The closest neighbor Harold Lafever had was the one who took his life, according to the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office.

A friend discovered 62-year-old Lafever's body, apparently shot and stabbed, in his Turkey Creek Road home Monday afternoon, authorities said. Investigators believe he had been dead for several days.

The search for Dennis Carr, 55, the man who lived in a camper behind Lafever's home, ended in an hourlong standoff Tuesday at a Riverview mobile home park.

Detective Larry McKinnon, a spokesman for the Sheriff's Office, said it was unclear what precipitated Lafever's slaying.

Carr was arrested and charged with second-degree murder and failure of a sex offender to report an address change.

The SWAT team caught up to Carr in the Country Villa Estates mobile home park about 1:30 p.m. The team had tried several other residences previously associated with Carr.

When they arrived, he had barricaded himself in the mobile home of someone he knew and refused to surrender, the Sheriff's Office reported.

Negotiators made contact with him and got him to come out. Then, deputies shot him with a bean bag and took him into custody, McKinnon said. Carr was not armed when arrested and deputies were still waiting on warrants to search for the murder weapons late Tuesday, McKinnon said.

It's unclear whether Carr was renting from Lafever, who owned the property. A neighbor said the camper behind the home had been there for a long time.

Both men had extensive arrest records.

Lafever, the victim, had served a year in state prison on drug charges. When released in 2004, he came home to 4112 Turkey Creek Road.

In 1986, Carr was sentenced to prison for attempted sexual battery on a victim younger than 12. He was released in 1993 but was jailed again for violating probation, state records show.

He also appears on the Tennessee sex offenders registry, which lists him as an absconder.

Tuesday's standoff, however peacefully it may have ended, caused a stir in the mobile home community.

Selena Welch, 15, said both streets into the neighborhood were blocked off as SWAT and crisis negotiator teams arrived.

"It was so crazy," Welch said. "This stuff normally never happens here."

Staff writers Danny Valentine and Biz Carson and news researcher John Martin contributed to this report.

Man arrested in Plant City killing after standoff with deputies 07/19/11 [Last modified: Wednesday, July 20, 2011 1:13am]
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