Three homeless men barbequing steaks and drinking rum in the Sarasota County woods ended with one man decapitated, one man in jail, and one man serving as the police eyewitness.
According to a probable cause affidavit by Sarasota Police, a man called 911 on Tuesday at 1:30 a.m. to report that he had just witnessed a man killing another man by chopping off his head.
The witness, Donald Mann, said he, suspect Ricky L. Leer, and the unidentified victim were having a rum-soaked cookout in the woods where they lived.
Over the course of the night, Leer and the victim began to argue. Mann reports that their fight finally escalated when the victim accidently knocked over the grill. According to the affidavit, Leer then knocked the victim to the ground and used a machete-like knife to decapitate him.
Mann told police he tried to kick Leer off the victim, but when he was unsuccessful, he fled and called 911. Mann led deputies to the woods where they found the body of the deceased 53-year-old victim.
After canvasing the woods, deputies eventually found Leer, still drinking rum and leaning against a tree. He was charged with second-degree murder.