Family: Victim Shot In Head While Holding 2-Year-Old
ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. – Family members say a man was holding his baby girl when thieves broke into his Orange County house, tried to rob him, and then murdered him.
The Orange County Sheriff’s Office told WFTV they received a 911 call regarding a robbery at a home on Victoria Circle (see map) around 10:40am.
According to investigators, an ADT salesman was going door-to-door in the neighborhood. He knocked on the door of a home on Victoria Circle and a girl, believed to be in her teens, answered the door with blood on her and asked him to please call the police.
“My coworker was knocking on the door. A little girl came to the door. She was, like, ‘Call the police.’ She had blood all over her leg,” eyewitness Bernard Campbell told WFTV (watch full interview). “She seems alright, but I know she’s gonna be traumatized for life.”
Deputies arriving on the scene found a man dead from an apparent gunshot wound. He was identified Wednesday afternoon as 43-year-old Winston Rawlings.
According to the victim’s brother, three suspects entered the home and demanded money; the victim apparently knew at least one and called him by name. The victim’s brother told WFTV two teen girls were upstairs, apparently the victim’s daughters; he also said Rawlings had his 2-year-old daughter with him downstairs.
The victim’s brother said the suspects searched the house for money, but found none. When the suspects asked the victim for money, the brother said, he told them he didn’t have anything. According to the brother, one of the suspects then shot him in the head while he was holding his 2-year-old child.
The sheriff’s office has not confirmed the family’s information, but investigators did say no one else was injured.
Wednesday afternoon, deputies took a tracking dog out of the neighborhood and down the block to Old Winter Garden Road. Investigators say whoever shot Rawlings had a getaway car.
The sheriff’s office won’t say whether Rawlings was targeted, but either way a killer is on the loose.
“I would say someone who’s willing to do this would be a fairly dangerous. I would absolutely agree to that,” said Jeff Williamson, Orange County Sheriff’s Office.
Rawlings was released from state prison six years ago. He has drug, grand theft and weapons charges in his history. His brother told WFTV he runs a kiosk at the Jaymart on West Colonial Drive.
Investigators say they have an idea who they’re looking for, but they won’t release a name.