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Killer angered over small amount he got from UT student

TAMPA — The man who robbed and fatally shot a University of Tampa student early Wednesday was angered by the small amount of cash he got, police said.

Before he pulled the trigger, police spokeswoman Laura McElroy said, "The suspect continued to demand more money and was irate that they didn't have more."

That was when 21-year-old Michael Harahan, who was visiting his friend from out of town, ran for help and heard a gunshot.

His friend, UT student and cross country runner Ryan McCall, 21, died.

The robber fled with whatever the two had in their pockets. Police would not say how much money he got.

"Why he would pull the trigger and commit such a senseless crime is a question we don't have an answer to," McElroy said.

Police are still searching for the suspect, described as a black male in his 30s, about 5 feet 10 and 180 pounds with a husky build and a goatee. He wore a white T-shirt.

The fatal encounter occurred at about 3 a.m. as McCall, a senior and aspiring track coach, was walking home with Harahan after leaving the Retreat Lounge when police say a stranger approached them on North Boulevard's Eugene Holtsinger Bridge, demanding money.

McCall and Harahan, who was visiting from Philadelphia, had been out celebrating a friend's 21st birthday. They got a ride to the Retreat and decided to walk back.

An exercise science major and member of the UT cross country track team, McCall coached 40 students on the Tampa Prep varsity team last spring in between classes and working part time at Publix.

Detectives are investigating other recent robberies in the area to see if there is a connection to this man.

Police ask anyone with information to call (813) 276-3200.

Ryan McCall Memorial Fund

A fund has been set up to collect donations to help with Ryan McCall's funeral expenses. The family wants to bring his body back to Pennsylvania, where other relatives are buried, but the transportation and funeral costs are expected to reach $13,000. McCall's father is a plumber who is out of work because of the economy; his mother works as a hostess at a Cracker Barrel.

Donohue Funeral Home is handling the service in Pennsylvania, which is slated for Thursday. A time has not been set. The Web site is www.donohuefuneralhome.com and number is (610) 269-3080 or toll-free 1-800-366-6483.

There will also be a memorial service at the University of Tampa. McCall's aunt, Bernadette McCall, said the date is not yet set, though it will likely be during the first week of September.

To make a donation to help with funeral expenses: Go to any Wachovia bank branch and write a check to the Ryan P. Memorial Fund, or visit ryanmccallmemorialfund.com. Or go to paypal.com and click on "send money." When prompted, say it is to be sent to ryanpmccall@yahoo.com and that it is a gift. Bernadette McCall said that account is linked directly to the memorial fund with Wachovia.



Fast facts

Ryan McCall Memorial Fund

A fund has been set up to collect donations to help with Ryan McCall's funeral expenses. The family wants to bring his body back to Pennsylvania, where other relatives are buried, but the transportation and funeral costs are expected to reach $13,000. McCall's father is a plumber who is out of work because of the economy; his mother works as a hostess at a Cracker Barrel.

Donohue Funeral Home is handling the service in Pennsylvania, which is slated for Thursday. A time has not been set. The Web site is www.donohuefuneralhome.com and number is (610) 269-3080 or toll-free 1-800-366-6483.

There will also be a memorial service at the University of Tampa. McCall's aunt, Bernadette McCall, said the date is not yet set, though it will likely be during the first week of September.

To make a donation to help with funeral expenses: Go to any Wachovia bank branch and write a check to the Ryan P. McCall Memorial Fund, or visit ryanmccallmemorialfund.com. Or go to paypal.com and click on "send money." When prompted, say it is to be sent to ryanpmccall@yahoo.com and that it is a gift. Bernadette McCall said that account is linked directly to the memorial fund with Wachovia.

Killer angered over small amount he got from UT student 08/21/09 [Last modified: Friday, August 21, 2009 11:50pm]
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