Florida to seek death penalty in Tampa serial killings

Howell Emanuel Donaldson III accused of killing four people

Howell Emanuel Donaldson III, 24.

TAMPA, Fla. - Prosecutors will seek the death penalty against a 24-year-old man suspected of randomly killing four people and terrorizing a Florida neighborhood for several months.

Hillsborough State Attorney Andrew Warren made the announcement during a news conference on Tuesday morning, saying the death penalty is "for the worst of the worst."

Howell Emanuel Donaldson III was arrested Nov. 28 after police said he handed a bag containing a handgun to a co-worker at a McDonald's restaurant near the Tampa neighborhood where the four victims had apparently been randomly shot in October and November.

Warren said the victims were killed in a "cold and calculating manner." He thanked the victims' families for consulting with his office as the decision on the death penalty was made. He said some family members favored the death penalty, while others preferred a life sentence. But he said all were OK with his choice to pursue capital punishment.

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