UPDATED: As of Friday May 9th, officials had collected enough information to rule this case a “Murder-Suicide” perpetrated by Darrin Campbell, according to the Hillsborough County Sheriffs Office. Mr. Campbell, the husband to Kim Campbell and family that was renting James Blake’s mansion in Avila. Mr. Campbell “systematically” shot his family before setting fire to the gasoline and fireworks ridden house, and then killing himself. The motive is still unknown, but they are looking into the family’s financial situation, as well as any other possibility.
On Wednesday May 7th, Tampa Fire Rescue responded to 911 calls around 5:45 a.m. from the exclusive Avila community in Tampa. After hours of battling the Tampa house fire, reports are now funnelling in that four people were found dead inside – two adults and two teens. The $1.75 million dollar mansion at, 6223 Sierra De Avila, is owned by Tennis star, James Blake and was being rented to a family for the past two years. Mr. Blake was at his home in Connecticut at the time of the fire.
According to officials, the circumstances at which the family died was “highly unusual” and not consistent with death caused by the fire. There were fireworks and an unknown accelerant found throughout the home. It will be days before crews can fully investigate the fire, but they are saying now that it appears to be Arson.
Tampa Fire Rescue and the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office remained on scene all day to extinguish hot spots and begin their investigation. We will update this story with more information as it becomes available.
By John Little