Man arrested after video captures 3 carrying body of homicide victim out of Polk County home

Justin Jenkins, 29, faces 1st-degree murder charge

Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd says one arrest has been made in homicide, but others are still sought.

POLK COUNTY, Fla. – One of three men captured on video carrying the body a man who had been shot to death out of a Davenport home has been arrested, according to the Polk County Sheriff’s Office.

The sheriff’s office said Justin Jenkins, 29, was arrested over the weekend in Volusia County in connection with the shooting death of Xavier Antonio Johnson, 29.

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Deputies said Johnson was killed during a drug deal inside a home he was renting through Airbnb. The sheriff’s office said it was learned during the investigation that Johnson was selling marijuana from the house.

Deputies said three suspects, one of them armed with a gun, entered the house around 8:30 p.m. on April 13 and fatally shot Johnson.

Justin Jenkins (Volusia County Sheriff's Office)

Video shared on the Polk County Sheriff’s Office’s Facebook page Saturday showed three men carrying Johnson’s body out of the house. The men took Johnson to the hospital, where he later died, officials said.

Sheriff Grady Judd said deputies are working to identify a second suspect who was seen in the surveillance video. The new video was released Monday and can be seen below.

Second video from homicide released - April 18, 2022

Polk County Sheriff's Office Homicide detectives are seeking the identity of a suspect seen on video surveillance in the homicide of 29-year-old Xavier Antonio Johnson of St. Petersburg. As previously released: On April 13, 2022, Johnson was fatally shot during a drug transaction inside a home on Acorn Drive in Davenport that he and his associates were renting via Air BNB. According to the investigation, Johnson and his associates had been selling trafficking amounts of marijuana from the house since April 8, 2022, when they took occupancy. Around 8:30 p.m. on April 13th, unknown suspects went inside the house, and shot the victim. Video was released showing three unknown males carrying the victim out of the house, and thanks to tips received from the community, those three men were positively identified. The men drove Xavier Johnson to the Heart of Florida hospital and left him there. He succumbed to his injuries and died. Also identified over the Easter weekend was 29-year-old Justin Jenkins (DOB 7/5/92) of Volusia County, and he has been taken into custody and booked into the Volusia Jail on a Polk County warrant for first degree murder. His criminal history includes 35 previous felonies and 20 previous misdemeanors. He will be transferred to the Polk County Jail at a later date. We are releasing additional video today that shows Jenkins and an unknown white or Hispanic male - we are seeking the public's help to identify the unknown male. If anyone has information about this investigation they are urged to contact the Polk County Sheriff's Office at 863-298-6200. If you have information and wish to remain anonymous, and be eligible for a $5,000 CASH REWARD, contact Heartland Crime Stoppers in one of four ways: CALL 1-800-226 TIPS (8477) DIAL **TIPS from your cell phone VISIT DOWNLOAD the free "P3tips" app on your smartphone or tablet. Sheriff Judd discussed this update on our Facebook page earlier today: This release is also posted on our website:

Posted by Polk County Sheriff's Office on Monday, April 18, 2022

Jenkins faces a first-degree murder charge and will be transferred to the Polk County Jail.

Anyone with information is asked to call the sheriff’s office at 863-298-6200, or Heartland Crime Stoppers at 800-226 TIPS to remain anonymous and potentially be eligible for a $5,000 cash reward

About the Author:

Brenda Argueta is a digital journalist who joined in March 2021. She graduated from UCF and returned to Central Florida after working in Colorado.