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Cops say co-worker killed Lotto winner

Florida LotteryFlorida Lottery: Cops say co-worker killed Lotto winner

A burly Orange County, Florida, tree trimmer won $10,000 last month and some are saying it may have cost him his life.

Employees found their crew boss dead on the floor with empty pockets Monday morning at Gator Tree Experts near West Fairbanks Avenue.

Suspicions quickly focused on Dwayne Ricardo Smith, a missing co-worker with a history of violent crimes, according to Orange County sheriff's reports.

Within hours, Smith's best friend began telling detectives about a night that began with murder and ended with strippers, drinks and lap dances.

"Drive. Drive. Drive," friend Darwin Rhule quoted Smith as saying after he ran, gun in hand, from the Gator office late Sunday, according to a sheriff's affidavit. "I had to kill the Cracker."

Investigators arrested Smith, 23, early Tuesday on a charge of first-degree murder with a firearm. The Winter Park man was being held without bail at the county jail.

Flowers, cards and other memorials for Stockford, 48, were left Monday and Tuesday outside the tree service on Minnesota Avenue.

"He was a devout Christian who straightened out his life years ago and joined Calvary Assembly," Joe McLaughlin, the owner of Gator Tree Experts said of Stockford. "It's real crazy. Dwayne passed drug tests and everything. He was a good worker on and off."

First arrested at 14 on burglary and cocaine charges, the Jamaican-born Smith spent his teenage years in a series of state juvenile-justice facilities, state attorney records show.

Convicted at least three times of attacking juvenile-justice workers, Smith was ordered held in secure detention for five years or until he turned 21 in 2005, records show.

Smith's adult record began in 2004 when a co-worker at Gator Tree accused Smith of stomping him and threatening to slash his throat over a $100 debt, court records show.

"Quit crying and die like a man," the accuser quoted Smith as saying, according to the arrest report. "You're going to die."

Aggravated-assault and aggravated-battery charges against Smith were dropped when the man disappeared and did not testify, court records show.

The same thing almost happened again in 2005, when Smith was charged with ramming his stepsister headfirst through a window and cutting her with a butcher knife.

His stepsister refused to cooperate with deputies, but a neighbor slashed during the fight testified, court records show. Smith was convicted of battery and sentenced to 121 days in the county jail.

After Stockford's death about 8 p.m. Sunday, Smith went home and changed clothes except for his black high-top sneakers, the latest arrest affidavit states. Then the buddies went to Crystal Cabaret Gentlemen's Club in Lockhart, where Smith spent about $400 cash on $10 lap dances and drinks, the affidavit said.

"He was ordering three at a time, drinking two and taking one into the back," said an employee Tuesday of Smith ordering $5.75 beers at the adult establishment. "I don't know how long he was here."

Sheriff's homicide detectives went to the nightclub Tuesday afternoon to review videotape of Smith going back and forth from the bar to where he was paying for a string of 3-minute lap dances.

Investigators have recovered some money and are trying to construct a timeline of where Smith went before and after the killing, including a Wal-Mart store in Casselberry to buy a box of bullets, Detective Mark Hussey said.

As of late Tuesday, the trail had led to a pond near Lee Road, where Smith is accused of tossing a silver pistol with black grips and the box of bullets from Wal-Mart, Hussey said. The sheriff's dive team will try to find the pistol today.

Before his arrest, Smith threw away a pair of black high-top sneakers, according to the arrest affidavit. When his best friend asked why, the report said, Smith mentioned a popular TV-crime show and responded, "Don't you watch CSI?"

Sun-Sentinel

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15 comments. Last comment 9 years ago by Litebets27.
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Litebets27's avatar - power
Maryland
United States
Member #10465
January 14, 2005
6065 Posts
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Posted: July 11, 2007, 8:45 pm - IP Logged

What a 'freakin' nut. What is wrong with people these days? Life means nothing any more. God help us.

Feeling,  PRICELESS!!!Banana

Come on Jackpot!!!

    Avatar

    United States
    Member #1826
    July 11, 2003
    2645 Posts
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    Posted: July 11, 2007, 8:54 pm - IP Logged

    What a 'freakin' nut. What is wrong with people these days? Life means nothing any more. God help us.

    Well if you read what the guy said, you can tell the guy is clearly a racist. He's not just a nut, he's an ignoramus too.

    (insert signature here)

      Ladee's avatar - Lottery-008.jpg
      North Carolina
      United States
      Member #52091
      May 10, 2007
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      Posted: July 11, 2007, 10:00 pm - IP Logged

      Totally agree...........!!!!!!!!!!!!! Ladee NC

        lottoqueen29's avatar - Lottery-044.jpg
        New Member
        tExAs
        United States
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        April 6, 2007
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        Posted: July 11, 2007, 10:36 pm - IP Logged

        Some people are so cruel.  I hope they throw the book at him!

          Litebets27's avatar - power
          Maryland
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          January 14, 2005
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          Posted: July 11, 2007, 11:08 pm - IP Logged

          Some people are so cruel.  I hope they throw the book at him!

          Book, chair.... throw it all at him. he seems to be a habitual criminal who doesn't care who he hurts to obtain his pleasures. He even beat his stepsister. He doesn't care about what their relationship is to him or what their ethnicity is. He only cares about his needs or wants at the moment the thought enters his head, and doesn't stop to think about the consequence he'll suffer because of his actions.

          litebets

          Feeling,  PRICELESS!!!Banana

          Come on Jackpot!!!

            Avatar
            Coastal Georgia
            United States
            Member #2653
            October 30, 2003
            1866 Posts
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            Posted: July 11, 2007, 11:51 pm - IP Logged

            Career criminal. Should have already been in prison and this would never have happened.

             

            Throw him in the hole and throw away the key .

             

                                           

                          

             

             

              justxploring's avatar - villiarna
              Wandering Aimlessly
              United States
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              Posted: July 12, 2007, 12:28 am - IP Logged

              I Agree!

              What doesn't make sense is that a violent person like this gets 121 days in the county jail and someone who gets caught smoking a joint gets life in prison. 


                United States
                Member #53080
                June 23, 2007
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                Posted: July 12, 2007, 12:38 am - IP Logged

                It all makes perfect sense to me!

                The love of Money!

                It makes PERFECT sense! In fact get ready to see a whole lot more people you are living in some desperate EVIL times!

                DO NOT TRUST the GOVERNMENT they are even bigger crooks and killers!

                  jarasan's avatar - new patrick.gif
                  Harbinger
                  D.C./MD.
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                  July 30, 2006
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                  Online
                  Posted: July 12, 2007, 11:32 am - IP Logged

                  This murdering animal has way too much negative energy, needs to be dealt with swiftly and in a capital way. 

                    justxploring's avatar - villiarna
                    Wandering Aimlessly
                    United States
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                    November 5, 2005
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                    Posted: July 12, 2007, 12:08 pm - IP Logged

                    I'm not sure when I changed my opinion on Capital Punishment.  I think when I read what John Cooey did to little Jessica Lunsford.  Maybe it was sooner....like when I saw the firefighter holding the baby in his arms after the Oklahoma City bombing.

                    However, Edith Bunker has always expressed it better for me:

                    During a debate at the Bunker dinner table: 

                    Archie:  Go ahead, ask your mother. She believes in capital punishment.
                    Gloria:    Do you Ma?
                    Edith:    Well, sure.
                    Gloria:   MA?  !!!!
                    Edith:    Well, as long as it ain't too severe.

                      time*treat's avatar - radar

                      United States
                      Member #13130
                      March 30, 2005
                      2171 Posts
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                      Posted: July 12, 2007, 2:05 pm - IP Logged

                      I Agree!

                      What doesn't make sense is that a violent person like this gets 121 days in the county jail and someone who gets caught smoking a joint gets life in prison. 

                      I've had jury duty enough times to tell you; it depends on the type of judge & jury you get, and the info allowed into evidence.

                      The type of people who would have dealt with this "problem" a few crimes ago would have been dismissed by the defense lawyer during jury selection. Jurors who make the final cut may not be told about prior crimes. 

                      In neo-conned Amerika, bank robs you.
                      Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms should be the name of a convenience store, not a govnoment agency.

                        spy153's avatar - maren

                        United States
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                        December 15, 2005
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                        Posted: July 15, 2007, 9:21 pm - IP Logged

                        I Agree!

                        What doesn't make sense is that a violent person like this gets 121 days in the county jail and someone who gets caught smoking a joint gets life in prison. 

                        doesn't make sense at all does it? Don't you wish we could do something about that?

                        voir-vous dans mes reves!Cool

                          spy153's avatar - maren

                          United States
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                          December 15, 2005
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                          Posted: July 15, 2007, 9:25 pm - IP Logged

                          I've had jury duty enough times to tell you; it depends on the type of judge & jury you get, and the info allowed into evidence.

                          The type of people who would have dealt with this "problem" a few crimes ago would have been dismissed by the defense lawyer during jury selection. Jurors who make the final cut may not be told about prior crimes. 

                          even new jururs would know the punishment should fit the crime.

                          voir-vous dans mes reves!Cool

                            mylollipop's avatar - Trek STLOGO6.png

                            United States
                            Member #24380
                            October 21, 2005
                            623 Posts
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                            Posted: July 16, 2007, 11:11 pm - IP Logged

                            I'm not sure when I changed my opinion on Capital Punishment.  I think when I read what John Cooey did to little Jessica Lunsford.  Maybe it was sooner....like when I saw the firefighter holding the baby in his arms after the Oklahoma City bombing.

                            However, Edith Bunker has always expressed it better for me:

                            During a debate at the Bunker dinner table: 

                            Archie:  Go ahead, ask your mother. She believes in capital punishment.
                            Gloria:    Do you Ma?
                            Edith:    Well, sure.
                            Gloria:   MA?  !!!!
                            Edith:    Well, as long as it ain't too severe.

                            Edith, don't feel bad.  It SHOULD be as SEVERE as the crime the crook enacted.  If he/she tortured his/her victim, then he/she should go the VERY SAME WAY! 

                            What does the reference to CSI and the shoes mean?  Anybody out there that is a CSI fan know?