TAMPA — Deputies making a welfare check found the body of a 40-year-old woman dead from an apparent head wound in a vehicle outside a Lake Magdalene area home.
Twelve hours later, after negotiations failed, law enforcement teams entered the house and found the body of a 52-year-old man suspected in her slaying, apparently dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound, Hillsborough Sheriff Chad Chronister said.
Deputies were called about 7 p.m. Monday to a home at 14027 Cherry Lake Dr. by a friend of the two who was worried the woman hadn’t been seen for more than 24 hours, Chronister said. She had been the victim of domestic violence before at the hands of the man now suspected in her death, Charles Siminski.
The two were in a relationship. Siminski owned and lived in the house. The woman — her identity withheld because of Marsy’s Law, an amendment to the state Constitution — did not live there, the sheriff said.
Detectives who were called to the scene noticed a Jeep Compass backed up against the front door of the home. Inside the vehicle, they saw what they believed to be a body in a trash bag. A search warrant was obtained and the body was confirmed to be that of the woman. It was her Jeep and she had been at the house of her own free will before her death, Chronister said.
From 11 p.m. Monday to about 11 a.m. Tuesday, the Sheriff’s Office’s SWAT, bomb squad and crisis negotiation teams worked to get the man out of the house. He refused. After hearing nothing from him for an hour, teams placed a chemical irritant in the room where they believed he was holed up. Still, they got no response.
They broke the back window of a bedroom and found the man dead on a bed.
Their history of domestic violence includes Siminski’s arrest in September on a battery charge, a first-degree misdemeanor, and an incident on Dec. 4 in which the woman jumped from a limousine on North Dale Mabry Highway and cut her head. Siminski also was arrested on Nov. 13 on a charge of driving under the influence.
The woman died Monday of apparent head trauma, Chronister said. The investigation into her death continues.
“I am urging anyone,” Chronister said, “who believes they are a victim of domestic violence or who knows someone who could be a victim to reach out for assistance through one of the many organizations in our community, including the Spring of Tampa Bay.”
How to get help
If you are in immediate danger, call 911. The Florida Coalition of Domestic Violence can be reached at 800-500-1119. There are local agencies in the Tampa Bay area to reach out to for help.
In Hillsborough County you can call or text The Spring of Tampa Bay’s 24-hour crisis line at 813-247-7233 or visit online at thespring.org.
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In Pasco County, you can contact Sunrise of Pasco County at its 24-hour hotline at 1-888-668-7273 or 352-521-3120, or go online at www.sunrisepasco.org.