2 workers shot dead at Ocala motel
Updated On: Mar 13 2013 12:47:39 PM EDT
Marion County deputies arrested a man on murder charges Tuesday night after deputies say he shot and killed two employees on the balcony of an Ocala motel.
Kelvin Lee Coleman, 37, faces two counts of first-degree murder, one count of possession of a firearm by a convicted felon and one count of attempted murder.
Deputies say Coleman murdered Lester Carter, 42, and a 54-year-old woman whose name has not been released at the Vacation Host Inn on South Pine Street.
According to deputies, Coleman was involved in an argument at the motel earlier in the day. Detectives said Coleman became upset when a worker told him to control his children.
Deputies said in an arrest report an employee reprimanded Coleman's children for riding their bikes in an unsafe area. Neighbors say Coleman became enraged and argued with another employee at the motel's front desk.
The shooting victims were not involved in the dispute, according to witnesses.
Coleman later returned about 9 p.m. and shot Carter and the woman, who were standing on the second-floor balcony.
Coleman fled the motel after the shooting but was arrested a short time later in Silver Springs Shores. Deputies recovered a gun at the house where they picked up Coleman.
Officials said Carter had worked at the motel for about a year, and the woman, who lived at the motel, had been an employee since 2004.
Neighbors and co-workers called both victims hard workers and good friends.
"They were really cool people. It's a shame that they're dead. People who don't deserve to live are living and the good people are dead now," said a neigbhor, who didn't want to be identified.
A woman identified as Carter's wife collapsed in grief after arriving at the motel.
Some neighbors are upset officials weren't able to arrest Coleman during the initial dispute, but a sheriff's office spokesman said a deputy saw no evidence a crime was committed.
Coleman is being held on no bond at the Marion County Jail after a judge said Wednesday morning that Coleman poses a threat to the community.
His criminal record indicates he was previously convicted of attempted murder and was released from prison in 2009.
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