Driver Shot in Orlando a Case of Mistaken Identity; Police Make Arrest

Tuesday, 02 Jul 2013 01:39 PM

By Clyde Hughes

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Police say a driver shot in Orlando on a highway may have been a case of mistaken identity after they made an arrest in the case Tuesday.

Fred Turner Jr. was shot and killed Saturday on Interstate 4 while he was on the phone with 911 to report being followed. The shooting was originally suspected to be a road rage incident.

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Hillsborough County deputies told WOFL-TV they believe Jerome Edward Hayes, 48, thought Turner was a man he got into a fight with at a strip club, Gold Club Gentlemen's Club in Tampa. Hayes and another friend had reportedly been kicked out of the club.

"The victim was mistaken for an individual who was involved in an altercation with the suspect's friend inside the Gold Club," Hillsborough Sheriff's Col. Donna Lusczynski said to WOFL-TV during a news conference.

Turner was killed while he was on the phone with emergency dispatchers about 90 miles away from his home Saturday, reported the Orlando Sentinel. The newspaper noted that Hayes turned himself in Monday morning at the Hillsborough County jail, where he was booked on a charge of first-degree murder.

Authorities said at the press conference that Hayes called 911 operators Saturday telling them he was being chased in what was believed to at the time a case of road rage. Turner told dispatchers at the time that he did not know the person chasing or for what reason, wrote WOFL-TV.

"While on the phone the caller stated that the vehicle following him had earlier pulled up next to his vehicle and someone displayed what appeared to be a semi-automatic weapon to him," the Orlando Sentinel said a report of the incident stated. "The caller stayed on the phone with 911 operators and the dispatchers heard multiple gunshots."

Authorities said at the news conference they believe the mix-up came when Turner walked out of the Tres Equis adult book store and video arcade at the same time Hayes and his friend were booted from the Gold Club, the Orlando Sentinel said. The book store and the club share the same parking lot and once outside Hayes thought Turner was the man he was fighting with inside the strip club, authorities told the Sentinel.

Hayes was denied bail and remained in the Hillborough County Jail Tuesday.

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Related stories:

New Jersey Police Officer Charged in Road Rage Murder

Funeral Held for Victim in Ex-Patriots Murder Case

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