A woman and a 41-year-old Ponte Vedra Beach man wanted for murder in the death of his 70-year-old father were found dead in a double suicide Thursday morning in a Daytona Beach hotel room, authorities said.
The St. Johns County Sheriff's Office was searching for Joseph Carmichael Reddock Jr., who was considered armed and dangerous.
The man's father, Joe Carmichael Reddock Sr., died of blunt force trauma and his body was found Wednesday inside his Palm Valley home, the Sheriff's Office said.
Early Thursday morning, Daytona Beach police were investigating a narcotics case at the Regency Inn on North Ridgewood Avenue when officers discovered the car that the younger Reddock was believed to be driving, which belonged to his father, in a nearby parking lot. A SWAT team and a robot from the Volusia County Sheriff's Office were called to surround the room they suspected he was in -- the room next door to Room 164, where SWAT officers had just arrested a drug suspect.
Daytona Beach Police Department Deputy Chief Craig Capri said they saw movement in the hotel room and then evacuated other rooms.
“When you go to a situation sometimes and there’s a barricaded subject and they’re not coming out, they usually don’t open the blinds. Or they open them slightly, take a peek and they close them. They did that first and then they opened the blinds halfway, for about a good two or three minutes. That’s not normal. I mean, why would you open the blinds halfway and look at us? And then close the blinds," Capri said.
After several unsuccessful attempts to make contact with the occupants inside, police fired two cans of CS gas into the room and the robot entered the room about 10 a.m., police said.
Reddock and a woman, believed to be his wife, Samantha, were found dead in the hotel room, along with an arsenal of weapons, including four assault rifles, four handguns and ammunition, investigators said. She has not yet been positively identified.
"It was basically an armory," Capri said. "By the grace of God, we dodged a bullet today."
Capri said it appears they each took their own life.
"I had no clue that guy was that dangerous of a person. No clue," said Robert Lee, who was staying at the Regency Inn with his girlfriend when police were called to the hotel.
Welfare check leads to murder case
After obtaining a search warrant and collecting evidence, authorities issued an arrest warrant for Reddock on charges of second-degree murder and possession of ammunition by a convicted felon in connection to the death of his father.
About 5 p.m. Wednesday, deputies were sent to the father's home on Lake Stone Circle in the Sawmill Lakes subdivision, just off Nocatee Parkway, to do a welfare check after someone who knows the family expressed concerned.
Deputies were still at the home Thursday afternoon, and evidence tape could be seen on the front door, garage and a window of the home.
Reddock had recently been living at his father's home and had not been seen since early Wednesday morning.
According to the Sheriff's Office, the younger Reddock had talked about wanting to commit suicide by cop.
Son had history of violence
Reddock had a lengthy arrest history, according to Sheriff's Office records.
He had been arrested almost 20 times, including on charges of domestic violence against his parents and Samantha.
His father took out temporary injunctions against him in 2015, 2005 and 2001.
In 2002, Reddock was arrested for violating the 2001 injunction. According to the report, he grabbed his father’s wrist after his father called 911 on him for making threats. He had threatened his mother after she refused to give him money, the report said.
Reddock said, “I will kill you both and collect the insurance,” according to the report.
In 2010, Reddock was arrested on a battery charge after deputies said he assaulted his mother. She told the Sheriff's Office that her son was bipolar and suffered from depression and she didn't want him arrested, only for him to get psychiatric treatment, the report said.
Son's wife remembered as good friend
The woman believed to be Reddock's wife, Samantha, has not yet been positively identified by police.
Michelle Braun, CEO of United Way of Northeast Florida, said Samantha Reddock worked as an accountant at the company for 20 years.
"We have lost a dear friend and valued colleague ... She was an important part of our United Way family, and she will be greatly missed," Braun said in a statement.
News4Jax also learned Friday that Samantha Reddock performed in a Zumba segment on "The Morning Show" in 2012.
Investigators said they have yet to determine Reddock's wife's possible involvement.
Neighbors react to tragedy
Multiple neighbors said that they had seen arguments involving the younger Reddock in the driveway and outside the home on multiple occasions, but one neighbor said she hadn’t seen any of the family members recently.
Neighbors said the family kept to themselves, but there were incidents in the past that left them with questions.
“There was some yelling sometimes, and I thought there might have been the potential for violence, but I never saw anything like that,” Martha Harden said. “I’ve met the parents. They were both very nice. I have talked to them on several occasions. The son seems to have some issues.”
Max Bailen, whose uncle knew Reddock Sr. well, said he's shocked.
"He knows the guy, didn't know his son very well or his story. But it's just something we didn't expect," Bailen said. "The community is affected by it. This neighborhood, it's a small neighborhood. People know each other and they are all friends."
Other neighbors said they saw the family but didn't know much about them.
“We never talked or interacted,” Loretta Burnsed said.
Harden, who lives across the street, said she didn’t even know the mother had passed away.
“I Googled her and found her obituary -- that she had died on June 1,” Harden said. “It’s surprising that nobody in the neighborhood knew, but that’s how reserved they were.”
Neighbors said they were shocked to see a crime scene in their quiet neighborhood Wednesday.
“It’s sad,” Burnsed said. “It’s tragic no matter where it happens, and I think it makes you realize there is no safe place. This could happen anywhere.”