Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Mystery for Largo family ends in fatal shooting of Oldsmar man

LARGO — The harassment at Renee Salazar's house went on for months.

BBs cracked the windows on her minivan. One hit the window of her house.

Two tires on her van were slashed. She kept receiving anonymous calls from someone making sexual noises or not saying anything at all.

It was terrifying for the 40-year-old mother of three and on Friday morning, police say the nerve-wracking mystery came to an end when an officer fatally shot a man near Salazar's house.

Here's how events unfolded, according to Largo police Lt. Mike Loux:

At 4:21 a.m., a neighbor called police to report someone shooting near Salazar's house on 14th Avenue SW. The caller said the shooter fled on foot.

Four minutes later, on Ridge Road SW, Sgt. Frank Parr came across the suspect, Vincent J. Esposito, 41, of Oldsmar.

Esposito was carrying a pellet gun that was a replica of a 1911 .45-caliber, semi-automatic handgun, according to Loux.

A confrontation took place and Parr shot Esposito, who died soon after at a local hospital.

Parr, the on-duty patrol supervisor, was put on a routine, paid administrative leave while the shooting is investigated. A 12-year veteran of the police department, Parr has not been involved in any other shootings, Loux said.

Loux said that the ongoing investigation prevented him from giving out details about the roots of the trouble that led to the shooting.

The incident left Salazar shaken. Sitting in front of her house Friday, Salazar said she met Esposito a year ago at a bar. Salazar said Esposito worked as a general contractor. They got to know each other and Esposito started dating one of Salazar's friends. The relationship lasted less than three months, Salazar said. Her friend found Esposito too controlling and broke it off, she said.

She said Esposito started harassing her because he blamed her for the relationship's end.

"I was happy when they caught him but now to sit back and think about it, it's scary," Salazar said.

She and her three children were inside the house and could have been hurt.

"I'm glad they got him, but I don't think he should have died that way," Salazar said. "I wish he chose a different path."

Jonathan Abel can be reached at or (727) 445-4157.

Mystery for Largo family ends in fatal shooting of Oldsmar man 10/03/08 [Last modified: Monday, October 13, 2008 11:44am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Gov. candidate Chris King: Climate change is biggest threat to Florida's economy


    Democratic gubernatorial candidate Chris King today made his case for how economic growth and fighting climate change go hand in hand. His rivals for the Democratic nomination, Gwen Graham and …

    Winter Park businessman Chris King and his family
  2. Editorial: Buckhorn's proposed tax increase is too high for Tampa


    Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn's proposed city budget for 2018 confronts some hard realities of the times. With debt payments looming and another fire station opening in fast-growing north Tampa, the City Council needs to consider raising property taxes, especially with the prospect of another homestead exemption around the …

    Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn’s proposed city budget for 2018 confronts some hard realities of the times. But it seems overly ambitious, and the City Council should be cautious about raising taxes too much in a single swoop.
  3. The next step in a sex abuse survivor's recovery: Erasing her tattoo


    Times Staff Writer

    TAMPA — Even after 20 years, Sufiyah can't escape the memories of being sexually exploited by gang members as a teenager.

    The tattoo makes it impossible.

    Sufiyah, an aAbuse survivor, prepares to have a tattoo removed  at Tampa Tattoo Vanish  on Thursday. During her teen years, she was sexually exploited by a gang. The tattoo is a mark of her exploiters. 

Tampa Tattoo Vanish is a new tattoo removal business run by Brian Morrison, where survivors of human trafficking get free tattoo removal.  [CHARLIE KAIJO   |   Times
  4. Cridlin: Linkin Park's Chester Bennington had a wail that stood apart

    Music & Concerts

    For all the old-timers' talk about how they don't make singers like they used to, about how rock vocalists of the 21st century can't hold a candle to the frontmen of yesteryear, here's a fact no hater could deny:

    Chester Bennington could flat-out wail.

    Chester Bennington of Linkin Park  performs at Steinbrenner Field in Tampa for the 2014 Carnivores Tour. [Photo Luis Santana | Times]
  5. Police investigating shooting in north Tampa

    Public Safety

    TAMPA — Police were investigating a shooting in north Tampa Thursday that left one person seriously injured.