April 19, 2002
Lawrence W. Crow, Jr.
or 502-8262 pager
Suspect Arrested In Angel Food Store Robbery/Murder
At approximately 10
a.m. this morning, Polk County Sheriff's Office detectives arrested Willie
Scaife, DOB 8/30/74, of 603 Maggie Circle in Winter Haven, for the murder
of Chiman Patel and the attempted murder of his wife, Hansa Patel, during
a robbery of the Angel Food Store in Auburndale, on March 22, 2002.
On Friday, March 22, 2002, at 10:40 a.m., Scaife entered the Angel Food
Store, took a beverage from the cooler, and approached the counter.
After placing the drink on the counter, Scaife removed a handgun from the
pocket of his cargo pants and demanded money. Although the Patels
complied with his demands, Scaife began shooting. Hansa Patel was
shot twice, but suffered non life threatening injuries. Chimanbahiai Patel
was shot multiple times and was pronounced dead on the scene. The suspect
then walked behind the counter, grabbed approximately $300 in cash and
fled from the scene on foot.
During the investigation Polk County Sheriff's detectives learned that
Scaife had shopped at the store on several previous occasions. In
fact, Hansa Patel informed detectives that the suspect had previously
cashed paychecks at the store. Based on this information, detectives
began the time consuming task of going through hundreds of checks that had
been cashed by the Patels since February.
After 3 weeks of looking through numerous photographs of possible
suspects, Hansa Patel positively identified Scaife as the suspect
responsible for the robbery and shooting. Early this morning,
detectives learned that Scaife was working in a orange grove near Bradbury
Rd. in Haines City. At approximately 10 a.m., Scaife was arrested by
detectives as he drove a tractor in the orange grove.
Scaife is charged with First Degree Murder, Attempted First Degree Murder,
and Armed Robbery. He was booked into the Polk County Jail late this