News-Press from Fort Myers, Florida on October 28, 1992 · Page 25
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News-Press from Fort Myers, Florida · Page 25

Fort Myers, Florida
Issue Date:
Wednesday, October 28, 1992
Page 25
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First reports shed little light on student slayings, suspect By The Associated Press Gatorwood apartment. "Some days it was sunny and some days it was stormy was identified as the gunman who held up a First Unior By The Associated Press GAINESVILLE The first 116 investigative reports into the gruesome 1990 Gainesville slayings were released Tuesday, but they gave little insight into the five murders or suspect Danny Harold Rolling. Only one report, on an interview with Theresa Ann Garren, adoptive mother of murder victim Christa Hoyt, had any details about the stabbing deaths, which included the further mutilations of Hoyt and two of the others. During the interview on Sept 15, 1990, police asked Garren about her daughter's personal habits, her friends and the location of items in her apartment. "When questioned concerning the placement of the bookshelf on which Hoyt's decapitated head was found, Garren advised that she had observed this bookshelf to be positioned under the air-conditioning unit in the living room of the apartment," the report states. Hoyt's body was found Aug. 27, 1990, in her duplex, just hours after the bodies of the first two victims, Sonya Larson and Christina Powell, were found in their Williamsburg Village apartments. The bodies of Manuel Taboada and Tracy Paules were found Aug. 28, in their The victims were all enrolled at the University of Florida or Santa Fe Community College, and were living in of f-campus housing. In the report, Garren said her daughter was extremely security-conscious and was concerned about the crime rate in her neighborhood. She said Hoyt had planned on moving from the apartment after the first of the year. She said Hoyt "would have fought back upon discovering an intruder in her apartment." Garren has spent the night with her daughter on Aug. 24 after having a fight with her husband. Hoyt, she said, attended a party at Gatorwood that evening, she told investigators. The first reference to Danny Harold Rolling, the Louisiana drifter charged in the killings, was in a January 1991 report filed at about the same time the media became aware of him as a police suspect in the student slayings. In an interview with Rolling's grandparents, Homer and Cavis Rolling in Bibb City, Ga., Cavis characterized Rolling as "a good boy, that he was just like the clouds in the sky. "Some days it was sunny and some days it was stormy and raining. She stated that Danny changed just like the clouds and that nobody knew why." There are several reports on the burglaries and robberies Rolling committed in Tampa, Gainesville and Ocala in the days after the Gainesville slayings. Rolling, 38, is serving five life terms in prison for those crimes. He is being held at the Corrections Mental Health Institution at Chattahoochee. Many of the reports deal with employees at various Gainesville restaurants viewing photo lineups containing pictures of Rolling, secondary suspect Edward Lewis Humphrey, and Stephen Michael Bates, who was being in Polk County on assault and burglary charges. In most cases, none of the photographs were recognized. Another report deals with the lineup in which Rolling was identified as the gunman who held up a First Union bank in Gainesville on Aug. 27, 1990, just hours after" Hoyt's body was discovered about a half mile away. Rolling was convicted in the holdup and sentenced to life in prison. During the trial, an investigator said a pubic hair found at Rolling's wooded campsite probably came from Hoyt. Many of the files also deal with the investigation into Humphrey, who was identified in the files as a possible suspect on Aug. 28, the day the bodies of the last two victims were found. The grand jury which indicted Rolling for the murders refused to indict Humphrey. Circuit Judge Stan Morris ordered the release of the reports after requests from attorneys for the news media. Rolling's public defender, Rick Parker, had argued against the release, saying it could damage Rolling's chance for a fair and impartial jury. Survey SSIfS Tax us, let military help and carry ID if you have HIV ByJIMGREENHILL News-Press Staff Writer More Floridians favor tax In-creases, an overwhelming majority approve of the military being used to clean up after Hurricane Andrew, 68 percent still don't have plywood in their homes in case of another storm and most believe AIDS patients should carry identification. Those are some of the insights gleaned from the latest Florida International UniversityFlorida Poll, an annual survey that this year posed 196 questions to 1,217 people in 45-minute interviews. Topics ranged from what language respondents use at home (9 percent use Spanish or another language) to how life will be in Florida in the next five years (70 percent said the same as now or worse, only 29 percent said better). Interviews for the 1992 FIUFlo-rida Poll were conducted between Sept. 19 and Oct. 17 with state residents 18 or older. The statistical margin of error for the whole survey is less than plus or minus 3 percent. People who were not permanent residents of Florida or were unsure about their residency were excluded from the survey. The questions were put by paid interviewers in random telephone calls, which means that about 8 percent of the state's population wasn't represented because they don't have telephones. I "Unfortunately, those that don't have telephones are heavily concentrated in the poorest end of the population," said Doug McLaughen, assistant director of FIU's Institute for Public Opinion Research, which conducts the five-year-old survey. ', McLaughen said that means the poorest people in the state tend to be heard the least. ', But here's a sampling of what those of us with telephones think: Respondents were presented with eight alternatives to raise tnoney if state taxes had to be "substantially" increased; 31 percent mostly or strongly favored a state Income tax, up from 26 percent four years ago. I More people also favored increases in every single one of the categories than did the previous year. Only 17 percent mostly or strongly oppose using cigarette and liquor taxes to increase state revenues 83 percent favor using them. "These numbers have changed dramatically," McLaughen said, speculating that "a little bit of reality is setting in with the general public they're coming to the point where they're facing the fact that if they want certain things done and services to continue, they're going to have to pay more." ! Hurricane trivia: 63 percent said they'd personally experienced one; 66 percent have closely followed relief efforts in south Dade County after Andrew; 98 percent said the U.S. military has done a fair, good or excellent job of helping there and 97 percent said that's an appropriate role for the armed forces. T6 put those last two numbers in perspective, McLaughen said pollsters wouldn't expect that strong a response if they called offering people $1,000 with no strings attached, i "it's almost statistically impossible," he said. The high approval rating for the military came as a surprise to surveyors who felt "hawks" might oppose the armed forces' role on grounds such work is not what they were intended to do while "liberals" might oppose it as threatening freedom. McLaughen suggested the support stemmed from people seeing what the military actually did in south Dade County, and that the answer would have been different if the question was asked before the storm. ; 82 percent of those surveyed agreed "people with the AIDS virus should be required to wear or carry identification that indicates that they have the virus, so that medical and emergency personnel will be alerted to their condition." V V Pwm 81 ( ORGAN and PIANO ) SAVE 6S Eft By taking an additional 30 off the ENTIRE STOCK of redlined reduced Juniors' and Misses' Fashions, Accessories and Shoes! m wwsm cffl3Sflg(3lti)Q3?6 ENTIRE STOCK! FLEECE JACKETS Juniors & Misses EXCLUDES BONUS BUYS Fashion Knit CASUAL COORDINATES off Juniors & Misses a i 8MB 4a II SsKiw II a I V caisMft iity39:)M-- wfr )! WnrV' Wilt: .iwtfaft W$ 8P0 II II Wsm 4W I tuifrr) mttttt&E j Mm II 4w I W$ II 3W hm II twvto I tn j 80M 8WP 1 1 m M I JOIN THE CLUB! & GET AN EXTRA 10 OFF EVERY YOU SHOP, EVERY DAY OF THE WEEK! 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