POLK COUNTY, Fla. — As 35-year-old Stanley Mossburg was transported from the Polk County Sheriff's Office to be booked into the jail for murder, he admitted to killing at least three people because God "needs them for the war."
The bizarre exchange between reporters and the man accused of killing at least three people lasted about a minute and a half.
In that brief moment, Mossburg, with a bloody bandage on his forehead, shook his head smiling, at times seemed slightly confused and stared down journalists working to uncover any clue as to a motive behind two gruesome murders in Winter Haven, Florida.
"I'm a prophet, not a serial killer," Mossburg said. "I'm doing what God tells me to do. Y'all will see God, and there's gonna be an angels and demons fight from God. There's a war, everybody will see."
People who live next to the two innocent victims disagree. They are still in shock, trying to understand the evil that entered their community, upending their lives, they said.
"It's a hard thing to go through cause I had just talked to Peggy that morning and it happened later in the day," Bob Strouse said. Strouse said the two people killed inside his neighbor's home were friends of his, named Peggy and Ken.
Strouse said they lived with the only person to survive the murder spree.
"He was frantic. We didn't believe what he was telling us right off because it sounded so far fetched you don't want to believe it, but we did," Strouse said.
Strouse said his neighbor of nearly two decades, who he identified as Tom Kohl, escaped sometime around 6 p.m. Monday, banging on Strouse's door for help.
"It's scary, really scary to know it could've happened to anyone here," Strouse said. "You know, that evening I was getting a glass of water and I saw the light on over in the office and found out later that a lot was going on at that time. But, you look, see a light on and curtains drawn and you don't think anything about it."
Sheriff Grady Judd said Mossburg is pure evil and deserves the death penalty.
Judd said the man and woman were tied up, then stabbed to death. Judd said because the man fought back, Mossburg made him suffer before killing him.
On Tuesday, less than 24 hours after the search for Mossburg was over, neighbors want the focus and attention to be on Kohl, the lone survivor. A man in his mid-to-late 60s who has not only survived cancer, but now also a double murder.
"He seemed to be in decent spirits for what he went through," Strouse said. "You know I don't know how you are supposed to act when you go through something like that. He has no money. He has no car. He has no support, only his neighbors, who are very supportive. Donate to the GoFundMe . Please help."
Neighbors are now feeding Kohl's animals and trying to clean up the crime scene.
This story was originally published by Michael Paluska on WFTS.