As friends and family mourned the loss of a store manager who was shot to death Sunday morning during a robbery at a Family Dollar in Tampa, police made progress in the case by finding a car that was stolen from the scene.
Police are still searching for a suspect but a tip from a citizen led them to the abandoned car at 2503 38th Ave. on Sunday night, said Janelle McGregor, spokeswoman for the Tampa Police Department.
Horsley Shorter Jr., 49, a 26-year Army veteran, died Sunday at Tampa General Hospital.
He was working at the Family Dollar, 4900 North 40th St., when the suspect entered the store and demanded money from an employee behind the counter, police said.
Shorter came out of an office to help his coworker and the suspect shot him, police said.
The suspect then took the cashier at gunpoint to the employee's vehicle where he tried to force the employee into the trunk. After the victim pleaded, the suspect closed the trunk and stole the car, police said.
Shorter, whom everyone called "Junior" always looked out for those in the neighborhood, especially kids, said neighbor Hortense Lampkins, 75, of 3023 N. 38th St., who knew him since he was in elementary school.
"It was just a neighborhood that loved and watched out for each other, including him," Lampkins said.
When Shorter was in the army, Lampkins said she used to ask him when he was going to settle down but Shorter told her he had to take care of his mom.
Shorter, she said, was one of the good ones.
"All I can say is they kill good people and leave the scum bags," she said.
Miriam Mitchell, 53, a retired Chief Master Sergeant, worked with Shorter at MacDill Air Force Base and was his friend for 14 years.
She described him as the life of a party and a man who always asked what he could do for others.
"If we could have 10 more of Horsley, our world would be filled with love," Mitchell said.
Information about services for Horsley was not available.
Police are searching for a thin black man in his 20s, about 5 feet 10 inches tall. He was last seen wearing a black beanie, long-sleeve thermal shirt, long shorts, dark blue boxers and low white socks, police said.
Crime Stoppers of Tampa Bay has offered a $1,000 reward to anyone who provides information that leads to an arrest of the shooter. Tipsters can call (800) 873-TIPS (8477), visit www.crimestopperstb.com, text CSTB plus the tip information to 274637 or use the free app Tipsubmit.