STUART, Fla. — Police have arrested a neighbor on charges of murder after an elderly couple was found killed in their Florida home.
The Martin County Sheriff’s Office announced the arrest of Hugh Hootman, 75, and said he was charged with first-degree murder in the shooting deaths of his neighbors, Ginger and Henry Wallace. The couple was found killed in their home on Saturday at the Cedar Pointe Condominium Complex.
“We actually had units very close by,” Martin County Sheriff William Snyder told WPBF. “We arrived within a minute or two and did see two people on the ground floor of this condominium. They did appear to be deceased.”
Detectives said that Hootman lived above the victims’ apartment and had an ongoing dispute with them.
“Ginger was the president of that HOA of that building,” Snyder told TCPalm. “And it does appear to us from witness statements that the shooter and Ginger had some disagreement over HOA issues. I don’t know what those were, though.” Snyder added that witnesses said the couple had an argument with Hootman days before the shooting.
“It’s just unbelievable,” Glenna Tingle-DeRose, a neighbor, told WPBF. “I mean, this is a great community and quiet and you don’t have to worry about anything.”
Less than 20 minutes after deputies arrived, Hootman walked out of his apartment and surrendered, Snyder told TCPalm.
Hootman faces two charges of first-degree murder.
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