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Friday, November 28, 2008

FL- Ocala shooting victim was homeless sex offender

11-28-2008 Florida:

OCALA -- The Ocala Police Department has released the name of the man shot to death after a confrontation late Tuesday night.

He was identified as 34-year-old William Anthony Surratt. Officials notified Surratt's family about his death sometime late Wednesday night to early Thursday morning.

Ocala police Capt. Lester Revels said Friday that family members said Surratt was originally from Atlanta and had moved to the Marion Oaks area roughly four years ago.

The Florida Department of Law Enforcement Web site indicates Surratt had been a registered sex offender. The sex offender information lists him as a 6-foot-tall, 280-pound homeless man, and describes his 1995 conviction in Interstate, Ga., as involving rape and child molestation.

Revels said there is no indication Surratt was slain because he was a sex offender.

Investigators were still searching for several people who detectives believe had a confrontation with Surratt in the 700 block of Northwest First Street beside a white brick home. The group had gathered by a bonfire because of the cold that night.

There were reports of about four shots fired shortly after 11:30 p.m. Tuesday. Afterward, officials say, Surratt ran and then collapsed about 150 to 200 yards away from the original crime scene.

When officers arrived on scene, in the 600 block of Northwest Second Street, Surratt was lying on the side of the roadway by an open lot. Authorities say the victim was in shock and was cared for by Ocala Fire Rescue personnel.

He was taken by ambulance to Munroe Regional Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead.

Surratt’s wallet was in his left back pocket. In his right pants pocket was a box of Marlboro cigarettes filled with coins instead of cigarettes, authorities said.

Officials on Wednesday say they could not rule out any motive, including robbery or attempted robbery.

Surratt was known to frequent the area, and detectives were still trying to figure out what caused the confrontation. ..News Source.. by Austin L. Miller, Star-Banner

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