HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, Fla. – The Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office has made a significant breakthrough in a 2021 homicide investigation in Thonotosassa.
On Saturday, June 12, 2021, at approximately 6:30 a.m., deputies were dispatched to the report of a body on the side of the road. The case was ruled a homicide, and detectives continued to follow up on leads over the last two years.
Through investigative efforts, detectives determined Phillip Stapleton, 32, was a possible suspect in two active homicide investigations. Stapleton was taken into custody earlier this week for his involvement in another murder in Seffner on July 20, 2023.
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“Our dedicated detectives have displayed tireless determination in both of these investigations,” said Sheriff Chad Chronister. “This shameless killer thought he could get away with murder on multiple occasions. His cold-blooded crimes end now. While nothing can fully heal the damage he has caused, I pray these victims’ loved ones find comfort in knowing Stapleton will now have to answer for his actions.”
Stapleton was taken into custody without incident in Pasco County on August 14, 2023.
He is now facing additional charges, including First Degree Murder and Tampering with Evidence.
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