Tag Archives: Santa Claus

“Santa Claus” Brutally Murdered in Polk County FL; Suspect at Large

Ronald Leggett, a Polk County businessman, was found brutally murdered inside his residence in June 2003.

Ronald Leggett, a Polk County businessman, was found brutally murdered inside his residence in June 2003.

 

Ronald Leggett, a 56 yo business owner in the Lakeland (Florida) area, was found murdered inside his residence on Timberidge Drive on June 16, 2003.  After Leggett had not been in contact with anyone for several days, his parents went to his home to check on his welfare and discovered his body upstairs near the couch.   He had been savagely attacked and his injury included both multiple blunt force trauma and stab wounds.
Leggett’s bearded appearance caused him to become known to many area residents and friends as “Santa Claus.”  He was well known in the area and operated a used appliance business as well as owning many rental properties, which would, of course, have placed him in regular contact with many different people.
The Polk County Sheriff’s Department is investigating the case and its detectives have pursued his many business contacts as well as social network contacts in hope of locating suspects.   Leggett had been married five times and police are still investigating a widespread group of contacts, family members, neighbors, and business associates, to gain leads that might lead to an arrest.

 

Police reported nothing was stolen and there was no forced entry.   Both of these things suggest that Leggett knew his killer and probably let him/her into his residence.

 

The viciousness of the attack might suggest that the killer had something personal to settle with Leggett, along with the fact that nothing was missing to suggest that burglary was the motive.

 

Anyone with information about this case is asked to contact the Polk County Sheriff’s Office Homicide Unit at (863) 298-6379, or send an email to coldcase@polksheriff.org