Rodney "Roscoe" Roman, accused of gunning down a Vanderbilt University running back, will remain in Hillsborough County jail without bail while facing a charge of first-degree murder.
Tampa police say the Dec. 26 shooting of Kwane Doster, a 21-year-old Tampa native, stemmed from "trash talk" over cars.
Doster was sitting with two friends in an Oldsmobile Cutlass in the parking lot of a nightclub at Whiting and Jefferson streets when an argument began with occupants of an orange Infiniti J30, police say. They say Roman, the Infiniti's driver, followed the Cutlass to an Ybor City gyro shop, where he shot at Doster and his friends, fatally wounding Doster. Police said Doster's two friends, who were not hit, identified Roman as the shooter.
Roman, 28, is charged with one count of first-degree murder and two counts of attempted murder. Tuesday morning he appeared via video before Hillsborough Judge Walter Heinrich, who denied bail.
Roman's attorney, Daniel Castillo, stood outside the courthouse Tuesday denouncing the arrest as a case of mistaken identity.
"He wasn't there," he said. "He was home." The lawyer noted that Roman chose to turn himself in, rather than flee, when he knew police were looking for him. "That is not the action of a guilty man," he said.
Eldrena Jenkins, Roman's girlfriend and the mother of his child, told reporters the man she knew would not have committed the crime. "He's not that type of person," she said through tears. "He would never shoot anybody. He's not even violent like that."
Roman, who was unemployed, has a lengthy criminal record stemming from drug offenses, including a two-year prison stint in the late 1990s on cocaine charges.
Christopher Goffard can be reached at (813) 226-3337 or goffardsptimes.com