WINTER HAVEN, Fla. (WATE/WSPA) – The suspect in the killing of a man in a Greeneville, Tennessee, on Oct. 2 is now the suspect of two more murders following his arrest Tuesday in Winter Haven, Florida.
Stanley “Woo Woo” Eric Mossburg, 35, had evaded law enforcement for 12 days before he was finally apprehended at about 5: 10 a.m. after a “spree” of killings, according to the Polk County Sheriff’s Office.
“This is an absolutely evil person,” Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd said during a press conference Tuesday. “He needs the death penalty.”
Christopher Scott Short was found dead outside the Celebrity Coin Laundry at 2055 East Andrew Johnson Highway on Oct. 2.
Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd said during news conference Mossburg “viciously murdered” Christopher Scott Short and left him outside the Celebrity Coin Laundry at 2055 East Andrew Johnson Highway on Oct. 2.
According to law enforcement, Mossburg fled Greeneville to his hometown of Spartanburg, South Carolina, in Short’s stolen vehicle. Mossburg was seen in Spartanburg Oct. 4 in the stolen car. The car was later found in a scrapyard the next day.
Between Oct. 4 and Oct. 9 Mossburg made his way to Seffner, Florida, outside Tampa after his sister bought him a bus ticket from Atlanta to Orlando. On Oct. 9 in Seffner, Mossburg stole a black Ford F250 pickup truck. Two days later, he pawned property belonging to Short in Auburndale.
At approximately 10:30 p.m. on Oct. 13, Mossburg entered a home, killed a man and tied up a woman. Another man later returned to the home and was bound by Mossburg with computer cords in a separate room from the woman. Mossburg demanded valuables and access to a safe, according to Sheriff Judd.
Mossburg later admitted to killing the woman, according to the surviving victim.
Mossburg attempted to clean up the crime scene with bleach and a mop before untying the man, according to the PCSO.
“He told our live victim that the two that he had murdered in the house were number 7 and 8,” Sheriff Judd said. “We have no way to verify that – only that Stanley Mossburg said the two he murdered in the Winter Haven area were number 7 and 8.”
At noon on Oct. 14, Mossburg told the third victim that he was leaving, but that he would be coming back and threatened to kill the man if he called the police. Mossburg left in the woman’s car.
“This man said to our live victim, ‘I’m not gonna kill you because God told me not to.’ But he held him captive all night long last night until today,” Sheriff Judd said, gesturing to Mossburg’s photo.
The man stayed at the residence for an hour before running to a neighbor’s home to call 911.
“For whatever reason, we expected him to take [the female’s] stolen vehicle and flee to South Carolina, but he didn’t,” Judd said. “He came back and then said he wanted to engage [with police.]”
Law enforcement set up a perimeter. A captain making passes in the neighborhood found the female’s stolen vehicle less than a block-and-a-half from the home. The stolen pickup truck was near the stolen female’s car and had been spray painted white.
Officers tracked Mossburg to a residence and were shot at in a standoff. They eventually used a battering ram on an armored vehicle to punch holes in the home and put tear gas inside. A punch through a garage door revealed Mossburg pinned under a broken pool table.
SWAT officers were finally able to take Mossburg into custody around 5 a.m. Tuesday.
“As we talked to our live victim he said, ‘oh by the way, this guy said he wants to be a serial killer’,” Sheriff Judd said.
Mossburg told PCSO officers that the two victims in Florida were “7 and 8 but his goal was to kill 11.” The other victims have not been confirmed.
He faces charges of first-degree felony murder, especially aggravated robbery and especially aggravated kidnapping in Greeneville. He faces two counts of first-degree murder and one count of attempted murder against deputies in Polk County, Florida.
Mossburg has no known connections to Florida and the investigation is ongoing.