McKay Bay murder investigation: What we know about arrest of Robert Kessler

Local News

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – Tampa police say they’ve made an arrest in a gruesome murder case.

Police have been investigating the case since human remains were discovered in Tampa’s McKay Bay two weeks ago. Interim Police Chief Ruben Delgado announced the arrest of 69-year-old Robert Kessler, of Lutz, on Wednesday.

A tattoo on one of the body parts helped police identify the victim as Stephanie Crone-Overholts.

“We believe it’s extremely important that we let the Tampa community know that the person responsible for this heinous crime is off the streets tonight,” said Delgado.

Monday, Kessler spoke with WFLA and admitted he had met Overholts.

I met her on Fletcher at McDonalds. Me and my little girl met her and she had a Pennsylvania plate and was in her car and it was obvious to see that she was homeless and stayed in her car and she explained to me that her ankles swell up because she slept in her car,” Kessler said.

However, he claimed he had nothing to do with her murder.

“They got a search warrant and they took my van and they’re not going to find anything. There is no evidence in there. There is evidence that she had been in here probably but that’s it,” Kessler said.

Tampa police say they discovered enough evidence to show Kessler murdered Overholts.

“In fact, we located some of Stephanie’s blood in her car and we did a search warrant on Mr. Kessler’s house where we found more blood and a pair of shoes,” Delgado said.

Sean Overholts praised the Tampa Police Department for making the arrest and keeping his family informed.

“My mother, she was a loving person. She may not have made the best decisions in life, but she was my mother, she loved us very much. It’s a relief to me and my family that before Thanksgiving we were able to figure out precisely who did this and without question who did this and they will hopefully spend the rest of their life behind bars, which is by far more than they deserve,” Sean Overholts said.

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