Three friends on their way to go fishing were beaten and shot to death in a grisly scene in the backwoods of Florida that the Polk County sheriff is calling a "massacre." “This is a horrific scene," Grady Judd tells the Lakeland Ledger. "I’ve been to a lot of murder scenes in my life, and this ranks among the worst." The victims—Damion Tillman, 23, Keven Springfield, 30, and Brandon Rollins, 27—had met up at a remote lake on Friday night to go fishing, with Tillman arriving first and being attacked by an unknown assailant or assailants who then beat and shot Rollins and Springfield when they arrived.
Rollins was able to call his father for help at a little after 10pm, and was able to communicate when he arrived on the scene, though the Sheriff's Office won't disclose what he said. But “in Brandon’s father’s excitement to run to help his son, he forgot his cellphone at home," Judd says, and had to run for help at a nearby convenience store. By the time help arrived, Rollins had died. “These folks appear to be beaten and shot. ... We are seeking leads, we need help so we can solve this crime sooner rather than later,” Judd says. He believes there was more than one assailant, notes the Tampa Bay Times. (More murder stories.)