Answers sought in deadly attack on Lakeland man - WFLA News Channel 8

Answers sought in deadly attack on Lakeland man

Posted: Updated:
John Papay and his nephew John Brown in 2011. John Papay and his nephew John Brown in 2011.
Alley in Lakeland where attack happened Alley in Lakeland where attack happened
LAKELAND, FL (WFLA) -

The nephew of a Lakeland man who died from injuries he sustained in an October attack says he’s devastated by how his uncle had to live his final days.

John Papay, 83, was attacked during his early morning walk October 10th and was hospitalized for two months before he died.

“Here’s a guy that had so much life in him, a senior citizen, someone who was easy prey, and what did they get out of the whole thing?” John Brown said by phone Wednesday. “Taking away his life and all possibilities of his future, all for 10 dollars and doing it in an incredibly vicious act.”

Lakeland Police are asking the community to step in and help provide any leads they may have about the attack that happened in the alley of West Belmar Street in Lakeland on October 10th around 6:20 a.m.

“He was knocked down to the ground,” Sgt. Gary Gross with Lakeland Police Department said. “He saw a silhouette of somebody running away and then he realized his wallet had been taken.”

The biggest reason police say they need outside tips is because before detectives were notified on January 29th of Papay’s December 18th death, he was cremated.

“The body is a piece of evidence,” Gross said. “We would have liked to have had the medical examiner look and examine. It’s just another piece of the puzzle. We’ve lost time. Time between his death and when we were notified that he had passed away, now we have to do the best we can, relook at the evidence and basically start over.”

Lakeland Regional Medical Center will not offer comment on why they did not notify authorities of Papay’s death. A spokesperson referenced a policy of not commenting on open investigations.

Anyone with information on what happened outside Papay’s home October 10th, is asked to call Heartland Crimestoppers at 800-226-8477 and could be eligible for a cash reward.


  • 8 On Your SideMore>>

  • Magic diet pill promoter found running new business in Tampa

    Magic diet pill promoter found running new business in Tampa

    Tuesday, September 2 2014 5:02 PM EDT2014-09-02 21:02:23 GMT
    File Photo: Nick CongletonFile Photo: Nick Congleton
    Nick Congleton is in hot water with the FTC for selling "magic diet pills," and under investigation by Florida's Attorney General for a defunct travel club that owes hundreds of consumers for vacations they never received.Now, he's keeping a low profile and running a new business out of an unmarkedwarehouse in the Channelside District, where he didn't have much to say to Eight On Your Side this morning.
    Nick Congleton is in hot water with the FTC for selling "magic diet pills," and under investigation by Florida's Attorney General for a defunct travel club that owes hundreds of consumers for vacations they never received.Now, he's keeping a low profile and running a new business out of an unmarkedwarehouse in the Channelside District, where he didn't have much to say to Eight On Your Side this morning.
  • Home Depot probing 'Unusual Activity' after reports of data breach

    Home Depot probing 'Unusual Activity' after reports of data breach

    Tuesday, September 2 2014 1:55 PM EDT2014-09-02 17:55:41 GMT
    Home Depot may be the latest retailer to suffer a massive credit card breachHome Depot may be the latest retailer to suffer a massive credit card breach
    Home Depot may be the latest retailer to have suffered a massive credit card breach, the company confirmed on Tuesday, after Krebs on Security reported that a large cache of stolen data had appeared on black market sites.
    Home Depot may be the latest retailer to have suffered a massive credit card breach, the company confirmed on Tuesday, after Krebs on Security reported that a large cache of stolen data had appeared on black market sites.
  • Community reaches out to Spring Hill family after theft of lawn equipment

    Community reaches out to Spring Hill family after theft of lawn equipment

    Tuesday, September 2 2014 8:45 AM EDT2014-09-02 12:45:21 GMT
    Michael Depace wants to say "thank you" and give a huge hug to everyone that reached out after a thief stole $3,500 worth of lawn equipment from him.
    Michael Depace wants to say "thank you" and give a huge hug to everyone that reached out after a thief stole $3,500 worth of lawn equipment from him.
  • NewsMore>>

  • Suspect who ran over Palm Harbor security guard to turn himself in says attorney

    Suspect who ran over Palm Harbor security guard to turn himself in says attorney

    Tuesday, September 2 2014 9:59 PM EDT2014-09-03 01:59:51 GMT
    The suspect was involved in an altercation inside the establishment just before 3 am Friday.The suspect was involved in an altercation inside the establishment just before 3 am Friday.
    The man who investigators say intentionally ran over a security guard at a Palm Harbor nightclub early Friday morning will turn himself in on Wednesday according to his attorney, Barry Cohen.
    The man who investigators say intentionally ran over a security guard at a Palm Harbor nightclub early Friday morning will turn himself in on Wednesday according to his attorney, Barry Cohen.
  • Online business complaint lands Sarasota woman and BBB in lawsuit

    Online business complaint lands Sarasota woman and BBB in lawsuit

    Tuesday, September 2 2014 7:46 PM EDT2014-09-02 23:46:44 GMT
    Can you be sued over your online complaint about a company? That's what happened to Sarah Kessler, of Sarasota.
    Can you be sued over your online complaint about a company? That's what happened to Sarah Kessler, of Sarasota.
  • Is your data safe in Apple’s iCloud?

    Is your data safe in Apple’s iCloud?

    Tuesday, September 2 2014 6:04 PM EDT2014-09-02 22:04:56 GMT
    Hackers gained access to celebrities private pictures including nude photos of actress Jennifer Lawrence. Apple says it has fixed a security flaw but cybersecurity experts say anyone can become a victim.“Anybody can get hacked.
    Hackers gained access to celebrities private pictures including nude photos of actress Jennifer Lawrence. Apple says it has fixed a security flaw but cybersecurity experts say anyone can become a victim.“Anybody can get hacked.
  • Sign up for WFLA News Channel 8 Email Alerts

    * denotes required fields






    Thank you for signing up! You will receive a confirmation email shortly.
Powered by WorldNow

200 South Parker Street, Tampa, FL 33606

Telephone: 813.228.8888
Fax: 813.225.2770
Email: news@wfla.com

Can’t find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.