A community is mourning tonight after the worst shooting Brooksville has seen in recent memory.
Three people were killed; another wounded.
It happened near the corner of Peach Street and Martin Luther King Boulevard in Brooksville.
But police are thankful after a strange twist of fate landed their suspect behind bars.
“He didn’t have to kill them people like that, he didn’t have to kill that lady, he didn’t have to kill none of them. They’re all family,” said Linda Stanley who lives two houses down from where Brooksville Police say George Mason III shot and killed three people.
It’s a shooting unlike Brooksville Police have ever seen.
Sam Taylor, who lives around the block said his grandmother, 81-year-old Jannie Taylor was one of the three people shot and killed, along with 29-year-old Ralph Peyton and 37-year-old Tarasha Yata Townsend. After killing the three, police said Mason went after his half brother Gabriel, gun in hand.
Neighbors told 10 News Mason even chased Gabriel Taylor down a path in front of the crime scene, shooting him along the way. Investigators later found Taylor shot multiple times, lying in the roadway.
But Brooksville Police Chief George Turner says that’s when fate stepped in.
“We didn’t have to worry about this guy going and shooting anyone else, we didn’t have this big manhunt,” he said.
He said an unsuspecting man accidentally slammed his truck into Mason as he was running on Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard.
“And luckily for us, it ends the threat,” Chief Turner said. “You know, (the driver) probably saved a lot of lives.”
Turner says Mason is recovering in the hospital from two broken legs, a broken back, and a broken neck and that he could barely speak from the pain, but a motive for the shooting is still unclear.
“You know, I don’t know if we’ll ever really know what happened. Only thing we can say for sure is all these folks knew each other.”
Mason is charged with three counts of murder and one attempted murder.