Walmart Shooting Suspect Arrested
Deputies say he shot a man in the face several times with a pellet gun outside the Lutz Walmart in what is being classified as a hate crime.
A Pasco County man is now in custody following a Wednesday morning shooting outside Walmart in Lutz.
Pasco County deputies say the man harassed a couple outside the Land O’ Lakes Boulevard store around 3 a.m. Jan. 2. The incident, which is being classified as a hate crime by the sheriff’s office, unfolded as a man and his girlfriend were walking through the store’s parking lot.
The suspect began harassing the couple because he believed the man was from the Middle East, a sheriff’s office report said.
As the man and his girlfriend approached their car, the suspect came up to them and made racial slurs about the man being with a white woman, then shot the man in the face with a pellet gun in the cheek area at least twice, Pasco Sheriff's Office Spokesman Doug Tobin said.
The victim was treated at the scene.
A video of the suspect was released by the sheriff’s office yesterday. Following that release, several tips were called into officials, including one that said the suspect was staying at a hotel in Wesley Chapel. Pasco detectives were able to arrest Daniel P. Quinnell there early this morning.
Quinnell was also arrested in August 2011 after being accused of assaulting an elderly man. In that case, the man came to Quinnell’s apartment to notify him of an eviction. Quinnell, deputies said, then struck the man on the back of the head. Quinnell was convicted of felony battery on a person over 65 in that case, court records state.
Quinnell's arrest record in Pasco County includes incidents that date back to 2006, according to jail records.
The racial nature of the Walmart attack struck a chord with law enforcement and also captured the attention of the Tampa chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations Florida. That organization posted a $1,000 reward for the capture and conviction of a suspect.
Quinnell of 2239 Tioga Drive is currently being held on $20,000 bond, according to jail records. The deputy in the case “requested high bond,” notes in the booking record say.