Florida man shot at homeless family of 5 in car, hit pregnant mother: police

A Florida man has been arrested after investigators say he opened fire on a homeless family of five sleeping in their car in a Tampa park last week.

Christopher Stamat Jr., 21, faces six charges after the shooting, which happened around 4:30 a.m. Wednesday on the 2200 block of N Oregon Avenue in a parking lot across from Martin Luther King Jr. Recreation Complex, the Tampa Police Department said Saturday.

“Our community as a whole can sleep easier tonight knowing that the suspect linked to this heinous, random act of violence is no longer free of innocent people,” Tampa Police Chief Mary O’Connor said in a written statement that thanked detectives for it. rapid identification of the suspect.

Stamat allegedly fired at a vehicle as a father in his 30s and a pregnant mother in her 20s slept inside with their three children, aged nine, four and three. The mother was hit in the head but suffered non-life threatening injuries and was recovering in a hospital. The father and children were unharmed.

Detectives identified Stamat after examining a black 2-door 300 series 2012 BMW that was seen on multiple surveillance videos near the area at the time of the shooting. Police found the vehicle in the garage of a Tampa home Thursday and determined Stamat was the owner.

A pregnant woman was struck in the head during the shooting and is recovering in a hospital with non-life threatening injuries.
A pregnant woman was struck in the head during the shooting and is recovering in a hospital with non-life threatening injuries.
Tampa Police Department

Stamat told police he was the only person who had driven the car around N Oregon Avenue on the morning of the shooting.

Detectives said they searched Stamat’s vehicle and found an empty gun case for a 9 mm handgun. Spent casings matching the casings found at the crime scene were discovered inside his apartment.

Investigators have not yet been told a motive for the shooting.

Stamat was charged with four counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, one count of attempted second-degree murder and one count of shooting into a vehicle.
Stamat was charged with four counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, one count of attempted second-degree murder and one count of shooting into a vehicle.
Tampa Police Department

Police said Stamat has not said why he opened fire, but claimed he felt people were “pursuing and following him” in cars, on bicycles and on foot.

Stamat faces four counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, one count of attempted second-degree murder and one count of shooting into a vehicle.

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