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GBI: Man wanted for Tampa homicide caught in Georgia after home invasion, chase and shootout with officers

He's now in the hospital.
Credit: The Associated Press

TAMPA, Fla. — A man wanted in connection with a homicide on Tuesday in Tampa was arrested Wednesday in Georgia.

Investigators say 37-year-old William Welland was driving the victim's black Audi in Georgia and went on a crime spree that included everything from an armed home invasion to the attempted murder of a law enforcement officer.

The Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI) said Welland shot a homeowner and unsuccessfully tried to steal the man's car in Lanier County. He then drove to another home and stole a minivan, investigators said.

A law enforcement officer tried to stop the minivan, but the GBI says Welland led officers on a short chase before pulling behind a home on Highway 122 East. Investigators say he tried to run and exchanged gunfire with officers.

One officer was grazed by a bullet, treated and released from the hospital. Welland was shot more than once and taken to South Georgia Medical Center in Valdosta, where the victim in the first home invasion is also being treated.

Tampa police detectives are headed to Georgia because they suspect Welland was involved in the death of a 29-year-old man whose body was found in the garage bay of a local auto body shop on Tuesday. Detectives don't believe the killing was random. The deceased man has not been publicly identified.

Anyone with information about the Tampa homicide should call Crime Stoppers of Tampa Bay at 800-873-TIPS.

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