Ocala man accused in ‘Whitey’ Bugler beating death handed over to feds

Sean McKinnon, 36, released into custody of US Marshals

Sean McKinnon, 36 (Seminole County Sheriff's Office)

MARION COUNTY, Fla. – The Ocala man who is among three charged in the beating death of infamous mobster James “Whitey” Bulger has been turned over to federal investigators, according to the Marion County Sheriff’s Office.

Sean McKinnon, 36, was released Tuesday from the Marion County jail and taken into custody by the U.S. Marshals Service, according to the sheriff’s office.

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McKinnon had been held in Marion County since he was arrested in Ocala on Aug. 18 on a murder charge.

According to a federal indictment, investigators accused McKinnon and two others in beating Bulger, 89, to death at a West Virginia federal prison in 2018.

FILE - This June 23, 2011, file booking photo provided by the U.S. Marshals Service shows James "Whitey" Bulger. Three men, including a Mafia hitman, have been charged in the killing of Bulger in a West Virginia prison. The Justice Department announced the charges against Fotios "Freddy" Geas, Paul J. DeCologero and Sean McKinnon on Thursday, Aug. 18, 2022. (U.S. Marshals Service via AP, File)

McKinnon is charged with making false statements to a federal agent and conspiracy to commit first-degree murder.

According to court records, McKinnon will be transferred to West Virginia to face federal charges.

McKinnon was on a federal supervised release at the time of his arrest.

Bulger was serving a life sentence during his incarceration at USP Hazleton following a conviction in 2013 for a multitude of crimes, including 11 murders. He was one of the FBI’s most wanted fugitives for 16 years before his arrest in 2011.

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About the Author:

Thomas Mates is a digital storyteller for News 6 and ClickOrlando.com. He also produces the podcast Florida Foodie. Thomas is originally from Northeastern Pennsylvania and worked in Portland, Oregon before moving to Central Florida in August 2018. He graduated from Temple University with a degree in Journalism in 2010.