Man shoots himself in police raid

Published Nov. 4, 1994|Updated Oct. 8, 2005

Authorities went to a Sulphur Springs apartment looking for a bank robber Thursday, but by the time they left, they were handling a suicide.

Hillsborough sheriff's deputies had a tip that a man wanted for bank robbery was at 8403 N 10th St., said sheriff's spokesman Jack Espinosa.

When deputies went to the apartment about 3:15 p.m., a man answered the apartment door. As deputies searched him for weapons, they heard a gunshot coming from the back of the apartment, Espinosa said.

Another man, who was not identified, shot himself in the head with a small caliber handgun, Espinosa said. He was dead at the scene. Officials would not say whether he was the man wanted for the bank robberies.

"We had information that the man we were looking for was here," Espinosa said. "All of the sudden, they hear a boom coming from the bathroom as they secure the man answering the door."

Three people were in the apartment at the time of the shooting. One of the witnesses, a woman who was near hysteria after the shooting, said she didn't want her friend to be known as a criminal.

"He was a good man," she sobbed, "I don't care what they say about him, he was a real good man."

Espinosa couldn't recall the last time someone committed suicide as a warrant was being served.


Guavaween called a success

Maybe there was a year when you had a better time or came up with a more outlandish costume, but organizers saw Guavaween '94 _ the 10th edition of Ybor City's Halloween street party _ as one of their best yet.

Despite a brief downpour, about 60,000 people attended last Saturday's event, according to consultant Steve Michelini, who helped plan the festival.

This year's Guavaween included a couple of firsts: It was the first time organizers charged a $5 admission fee, and it was the first time they held daytime activities for families and small children.

"That went so well they ran out of candy for the kids," Michelini said.

Although a Canadian tourist was abducted several blocks from Guavaween's fenced-in area and raped, organizers said the festivities inside the fence this year appeared to attract a slightly older crowd and did not pose as many problems with rowdiness as in the past.

Neither Michelini nor Ybor City Chamber of Commerce President Scott Rolston would say how much the event took in. The chamber leased the rights to Guavaween's name to CC Event Productions for a flat fee and an undisclosed cut of the gate receipts.

Michelini said not all of the 60,000 attendees paid the $5 admission. Some arrived early enough that they didn't have to pay. Others used $2-off coupons. Still others had passes to get in free.

But without a doubt, the event made enough that organizers delivered a $45,000 check to the city this week to cover police and sanitation services. They paid another $11,000 for off-duty sheriff's deputies and Florida Highway Patrol troopers.

And unlike last year, when a near rain out stuck the chamber with a $41,000 loss, the chamber came out ahead of expenses.