TAMPA, Fla. -- The state attorney's office released 1300 pages of documents along with 40 different audio files in the Seminole Heights serial killer case. In those recordings was a recorded interview with the accused killer himself.
- Recordings with accused Seminole Heights killer released
- Howell Donaldson talked to detectives about a number of topics
- Detectives asked Donaldson about killings, his involvement
During the four hour long recording with detectives, Howell Donaldson talked about everything from basketball, his plans to move back to New York for graduate school, and his parents who he described as hard working but hard to live with now that he's an adult.
At one point the detective asked Donaldson about what he thinks a possible motive could be in the case. "Would you be capable of doing something like that?" the detective asked. Donaldson can be heard saying "no."
In another portion of the interview the detective asked, "What makes a person do that? Is it something in their mind that just snaps?" Donaldson replies, "I don't know. Probably loss of loved one."
Investigators then showed Donaldson the highly publicized surveillance video of who they say is the serial killer.
Donaldson who was very talkative at the beginning of the interview started giving shorter responses. This was the exchange with Donaldson and detectives: "That doesn't look like anybody that you're aware of?" the detective asked. "You can't even tell who it is," answered Donaldson.
During the interview on the day that Donaldson was arrested, which was also recorded, he talked about why he handed over his gun to his manager at McDonald's that day.
"I was going back to St. Johns and I didn't want the firearm to be in my home with my little brother. Accidents happen and I know he likes to start searching for stuff," Donaldson said.
At the end of the conversation, once detectives got ballistics back, you can hear them telling Donaldson his gun was the murder weapon and the hoodie seen in this video was found in his car. They told him they knew he was the killer.
Investigators continued to ask Donaldson for answers to give the victim's families closure but Donaldson said he wanted to speak with his family. Shortly after that he asked to speak with an attorney.
The audio files and the hundreds of pages of documents also revealed Donaldson got the job at the Ybor McDonald's because his former high school basketball coach is the owner.
The McDonald's general manager, Delonda Walker, who Donaldson reportedly handed the gun to, can also be heard on those recordings. She describes what happened after Donaldson handed her the bag with the gun: "Before he left the store he was like I got something for you to hold for me. Promise and I'll contact you later and tell you what to do afterward," she said. "He said promise me you're not gonna look at it."
In the hundreds of pages of documents released, it also revealed how he reportedly visited an online adult themed website before and after each murder. That adult website allows customers to view other people's actions in sexually themed situations.
We will continue to dig into this case.