TAMPA — A man and a woman were killed in an apparent murder-suicide Monday night as they violently argued while driving in the busy West Shore area.
Investigators say they do not yet know the motive for the double shooting but said the two were in a "dating relationship."
The shooting occurred about 7:47 p.m. near the intersection of Cypress and Occident streets, west of West Shore Boulevard and near hotels and restaurants catering to airport travelers.
Police have not released the names of the victims, who are both in their 20s.
A witness, Raymond Guebara, 25, was staying at Marriott's SpringHill Suites when he said he saw a gold-colored sedan going west on Cypress Street.
"It looked like an argument in the car," he said.
As the car passed him, the passenger door was open — and it looked as though the woman was trying to jump out and the man was trying to pull her back in.
She did manage to jump out, and then the car struck an office building, Guebara said. Witnesses started to run toward it.
But the man got out of the car and fired a shot into the air, he said. The woman was shot in the street, Guebara said, and the man got back in the car and drove away.
"The female was shot first and then the male traveled in his car and came back to the scene," said Tampa police Lt. Steve Lee, "and we found him with a gunshot wound."
Police investigators said the man had struck the woman with his fists, then shot her several times, police said. The man shot himself in the head.
They died after one was taken to Tampa General Hospital and the other to St. Joseph's Hospital.
Police diverted traffic near the intersection while homicide detectives investigated.
The scene late Monday was dotted with evidence markers. The empty sedan, with the passenger door open, remained in a turn lane on Cypress Street.
Officers also cordoned off another possible scene near the air pump and vacuum cleaner station at a nearby Shell gas station. An employee there said a car had careered onto the property, struck a trash can, and continued down Cypress Street.
Late Monday, a fire truck was called in to wash blood off the street.