TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- The Seminole Heights community has been on high alert for the last 51 days.

Howell Emanuel Donaldson III, 24, was arrested and charged with four counts of first-degree murder in the killings of Benjamin Edward Mitchell, Monica Caridad Hoffa, Anthony Naiboa and Ronald Felton in Southeast Seminole Heights.

The arrest of a suspect believed to be involved in the murders of four innocent bystanders certainly came as a huge sigh of relief.

Timeline of the string of murders in Seminole Heights

Florida Governor Rick Scott was quick to respond to the arrest, applauding the law enforcement agencies for their hard work. Scott visited the community a week prior to the arrest.

Gov. Rick Scott added, “I applaud the relentless effort of Tampa Police Chief Brian Dugan, Mayor Bob Buckhorn, and every law enforcement officer who has worked around the clock and over the Thanksgiving holiday. Our state is home to the world’s best law enforcement community, and on behalf of all Floridians, we appreciate their bravery and service.

He continued with the summary of his visit, “Last week, I visited Seminole Heights and saw firsthand the pain that these crimes have caused across the community. As a father and a grandfather, it is unimaginable what the families of these victims are going through. Our thoughts and prayers remain with them, and we will work to ensure that they receive the justice they deserve. In Florida, we have absolutely zero tolerance for this type of evil behavior and anyone responsible will be held to the fullest extent of the law.”

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