DAVENPORT, Fla. (WFLA) — Three people are dead after deputies say a man temporarily living in Polk County for work went on a rampage early Saturday morning.
According to Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd, the suspect, 39-year-old Shaun Runyon, was in the county with a Pennsylvania electric company, called J & B Electric, Inc., doing work for Publix Supermarkets’ corporate office.
Judd said around 2 a.m. Friday, Runyon got mad as a result of a problem with his supervisor and punched him before fleeing the area. He had not been seen or heard from since that time.
Just before 9:45 a.m. Saturday, the sheriff said deputies received a 911 call regarding a murder in unincorporated Davenport.
According to Judd, Runyon had returned to a home the electric company was renting for its employees with a baseball bat and knife. He said the 39-year-old went inside of the home and stabbed and beat people. In total, seven people were at the home at the time of the incident.
The first victim was beaten to death while they were sleeping in their bed, Judd said. The second victim was beaten significantly and died Saturday evening. Earlier in the day, Judd said the victim was not expected to survive due to the “horrible nature of his injuries.”
A third victim was found dead on the front porch of the home, according to the sheriff. The fourth victim was chased into the street and was hit by Runyon with the baseball bat in the shoulder and back area, but is doing well.
Judd said three other victims, a man, his wife, and their 7-year-old daughter, escaped the home without being harmed.
“It’s a horrific scene. The entire scene is horrific,” the sheriff said.
Neighbors said this never should have happened.
“Brutal. Pretty brutal. That is beyond me,” said Mark Lower, who lives in the neighborhood.
According to Sheriff Judd, Runyon then fled the area, spurring an “intensive manhunt,” which consisted of dozens of units and K-9, aviation, and drone teams.
Roughly two hours after searching for the 39-year-old, Judd said Runyon had managed to get to a home in Lake Wales where he knocked on the door, covered in blood, telling the homeowners he had just been raped. He then proceeded to take off his bloody clothes and went to Lake Wales Hospital just before 11:40 a.m. following a suggestion from the homeowners.
Runyon was taken into custody by deputies at the hospital.
Judd said Runyon confessed to detectives and said he knew all of the victims.
“We had no idea what outraged him so bad that more than 24 hours later that he would come back and make an attempt to kill every one of them,” the sheriff told members of the media.
Judd did mention Runyon had a previous criminal history in Pennsylvania, including a “violent arrest” dealing with strangulation. He’s also been charged with endangering the welfare of a child, terroristic threats, assault, theft of lost property, receiving stolen property, DUI, and careless driving.
He’s now being charged with three counts of first-degree murder and one count of aggravated battery.
No other details have been released at this time. Information is subject to change as the investigation continues, according to the sheriff.