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Man accused of killing Tampa rapper to remain in jail

Demond Speed is accused of shooting and killing Ari Williams, also known by his rapper name Rollie Bands in July.

TAMPA, Fla. — A convicted criminal who was released from jail in June is back behind bars.

"Are you a danger to the community or society and I have to say yes," a Hillsborough County judge said Friday afternoon during a court hearing for Demon Speed.

Speed is accused of shooting and killing Ari Williams. Some in the Tampa Bay area may know Williams as "Rollie Bands."

On July 22, Hillsborough investigators said Speed was in the passenger seat armed with a gun when Darren Day drove him to IQ Apartments

That's where Williams was with his girlfriend. Detectives said Williams was outside walking his dog when Day pulled up in a BMW and Speed started shooting from the passenger seat.

There were 13 shell casings found at the scene.

A prosecutor said there is also video of the shooting. Investigators determined Day wasn't the shooter because in the video the shooter had tattoos covering his arms. Phone evidence also led investigators to believe Speed was the shooter.

Speed's defense lawyer argued that a witness had previously identified someone else as the shooter.

"There was a direct witness that misidentified the shooter as someone who was not my client," the defense stated.

A detective who testified said the video and phone evidence led them to believe Speed was the passenger in the car who shot and killed Williams. 

The video revealed Williams put his hands up and was trying to run away as Speed shot him multiple times. 

Prosecutors said Williams was shot in the back of the head.

"The victim has his hands up. He shoots the victim from the car, gets out of the car while the victim is running away,"  the state prosecutor said in court. "He chases the victim down, shoots him multiple times and ends up shooting him in the back of the head and through the body. Just multiple gunshot wounds to this victim."

So what links these three men? According to investigators, they all appear to be involved in tax fraud. A Hillsborough detective said in an interview with Day, "DJ (Speed) was upset with Ari Williams in the filing of the taxes." 

Investigators explained Williams was filing his sister's tax return and claimed it would be a lot of money. Investigators said those who helped Williams with the tax return were going to be compensated. 

A witness told investigators Williams had been arguing with Speed earlier in the day. Williams sent a text saying, "I'm five minutes away. If you're like that, pull up," according to Hillsborough detectives. That's when Williams went outside and was soon after, shot and killed. 

Hillsborough County Judge, Catherine Catlin, determined that Speed will stay in jail without bond.

"There is nothing to protect society except to keep you locked up," Catlin stated. 

Speed has a lengthy criminal history in Lee County. He was released from jail in June and on probation at the time of Williams' homicide.

"I don’t have confidence that you wouldn’t get possession of another gun or that you would honor house arrest because clearly, you don’t think the laws apply to you," Catlin added.

Speed will appear back in court on August 23.

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