LAKELAND, Fla. (WFLA) – The Polk County Sheriff’s Office has arrested two men in connection with the “vicious” slaying of 29-year-old Preston Burnett, whose body was found at an old golf course in Lakeland earlier this month.
Christopher Clardy, 39, of Auburndale and Jamie “Jamo” Garst, 30, of Winter Haven are now in custody, facing first-degree murder charges.
In a press conference on Friday, Sheriff Grady Judd said one of the suspects recorded part of the brutal murder on his cell phone.
Judd shared the disturbing video with the media, in which Clardy and Burnett are seen behind a car. Once they move off screen, you can hear four shots fired.
“This is a hugely violent event, it all surrounds a bunch of people who use street drugs and sell street drugs. And it all started with a young man who was abandoned by his mother at seven, left on the streets at 17.”
The sheriff said the incident started when the victim was dropped off at his ex-girlfriend’s house, a drug-filled environment, hours before Preston was murdered.
We learned the victim was killed because he was told not to come to the home anymore.
Clardy was also charged with conspiracy to commit first-degree murder and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.
Garst faces the same charges along with a charge for tampering with evidence.
Clardy is due in court for his first appearance hearing on Friday at 1 pm.
Garst will have his first appearance hearing on Saturday at 8 am.