Jermaine Bennett Wiki – Jermaine Bennett Bio
A Tampa man was arrested Saturday in connection with the violent killing of a bicyclist in Clearwater, Florida early Friday morning.
During a press conference Saturday, Clearwater Deputy Chief Michael Walek announced that Jermaine Bennett is charged with first-degree murder in the “heinous and violent” attack on Jeffrey Chapman, 49, who was riding a bicycle on Mandalay Avenue. shortly after midnight when he was killed.
Jermaine Bennett is 26 years old.
Case of Murder
Bennett reportedly admitted to attacking Chapman more than 10 times with an iron bar because “the ills of society had affected him,” Walek said.
Clearwater police said the incident was “totally random” and that Chapman was not attacked.
“It was a chance encounter that turned fatal while the victim was simply trying to ride her bike home,” Walek said.
Detectives were able to link Bennett and his vehicle, a black four-door sedan, to the crime through surveillance footage and community tips.
Bennett reportedly “showed no remorse for his actions” and went to work at Insight Family Eye Care in Wesley Chapel after allegedly killing Chapman.
Clearwater police are also looking for a second suspect in the attack described as a thin man between 6 feet tall and 6 feet 2 inches.
“It’s only a matter of time until we catch him,” Walek said as he encouraged the second suspect to come forward.
Police said it’s unclear why Bennett and the second suspect were in the Clearwater area.
Clearwater Deputy Police Chief Michael Walek announces the arrest of Jermaine Bennett, who is charged with the murder of a cyclist killed with a crowbar. (Clearwater Police/Twitter)
Bennet was booked into the Pasco County Jail on Saturday morning, where he awaits extradition to Pinellas County.
While investigating Chapman’s death, Clearwater detectives were made aware of a similar attack that took place an hour earlier in the St. Petersburg area, FOX 13 Tampa Bay reported.
The victim of that attack was not killed, but police are working to determine if there is a connection between the two incidents.
Anyone with information about the identity of the second suspect or the attack is asked to call the Clearwater Police Department at 727-562-4242.