Cemetery Shooting: Stolen motorcycle is fired deputy's | News
Pinellas Park, Florida - The bizarre details keep coming out in the headline-making shooting from a local cemetery early Monday morning.
A 13-year veteran Florida State trooper shot the owner of the cemetery, 48-year-old Clifford Work, after the lawman claims he feared for his life.
The circumstances started out oddly enough: a shoot-out at a Pinellas graveyard. It began when the trooper got a LoJack hit on a stolen motorcycle and followed the signal to the Royal Palm cemetery.
The motorcycle that Trooper Daniel Cole was looking for was a unique, custom job that some experts say is worth more than $60,000.
Even though the trooper shot the cemetery owner, it turns out that the stolen motorcycle didn't have anything to do with him.
Sgt. Steve Gaskins said, "Officers don't like to be involved in shooting instances. It's difficult for officers involved and for those who take that step."
Still, there was the question of the stolen bike.
10 News began following a paper trail as to who owned the expensive motorcycle, and it led us to the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office.
We found out that the owner of the bike is a former sheriff's deputy, 39-year-old Thomas Singleton, who according to records, was fired in 2006 for having sex in a cemetery where he was supposed to be on patrol.
We caught up with Singleton at the industrial park where he had the custom work done on his bike at a shop called Enhanced Concepts. We asked him if he would talk about these bizarre circumstances.
"No comment. We'll let the police take care of it," Singleton said as he got into his convertible Mercedes Wednesday afternoon.
Then, he drove away smiling.
Even the owner of the custom says this whole situation reads like a bizarre mystery novel. People are asking, what are the odds that a motorcycle stolen from his shop ends up dumped in a cemetery where a trooper shoots the cemetery owner?
Truly odd, indeed.
Former Pinellas Deputy Tom Singleton worked for the agency from 1998 until 2006. He has since moved on and is running a business with his family.
As for the stolen bike, it was recovered. But, the mystery remains, as to why the trooper shot the cemetery owner in the first place.
The trooper has been on paid administrative leave for three days. Meanwhile, the cemetery owner is still recovering at Bayfront Medical Center. He is listed in good condition.