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Update: Death Investigation Underway in Tampa

For Immediate Release : Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office
Release Number: 24-138



Update: Death Investigation Underway in Tampa

The Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office has arrested a Tampa man following a fatal shooting near the 5800 block of North Cameron Avenue.

On Monday, July 8, 2024, at 5:43 p.m., HCSO received a 911 call reporting an individual with gunshot wounds. Deputies arrived to find Juan Rafols, 53, with a gunshot wound to the upper body. Rafols was pronounced deceased at the scene.

Through investigative means, detectives discovered prior to the shooting, there had been a verbal dispute between Rafols and his brother, Joe Ruiz, 38.

On July 9, 2024, Ruiz approached USFPD near Bruce B Downs and 131 Street, stating that he wanted to surrender himself for the killing of his brother.

HCSO immediately responded, and during an interview with detectives, Ruiz confessed to shooting his brother.

Ruiz was arrested without incident.

“It is heartbreaking that a family disagreement has led to a loss of life. My heart goes out to this family as they cope with this tragic and senseless violence,” said Sheriff Chad Chronsiter. “Violence is never the answer. Situations should never be allowed to escalate to this extent. The suspect will now have to face the consequences of his brutal actions.”

This investigation is ongoing; any updates will come from the Public Affairs Office.