WUFT News

Chief investigator Spencer Mann retires, reflects on career

By on April 10th, 2013
Mann_Spencer-web-1

Office of the State Attorney

Spencer Mann, chief investigator for the State Attorney’s office 8th Judicial Circuit, is retiring after many years of law enforcement service.

His job included investigating a variety of subjects, Mann said, including everything from “a college football player to murder and everything in between.”

Perhaps the most notorious case Mann ever covered was the Danny Rolling murders.

Before the case files and the tragedy, Mann recalled that it was an exciting time in Gainesville. The University of Florida had a brand new university president, John Lombardi, and Steve Spurrier was heading the Florida Gators football team.

“Things were kind of on a high, and then all of a sudden the first discovery of the murders occurred,” Mann said. “Over a three-day period, a total of five kids were found murdered in their apartments.”

Mann said within days, the city was “gripped in fear.”

Residents and students were scared. Thousands of parents were worried.

“People were pretty glued to the situation at the time,” Mann said.

Mann reflected on better memories, including finding Alzheimer’s patients and missing children.

He said he still remembers one incident from about 20 years ago.

It was a cold, dark night and a young boy wandered off, following the family dog out into the woods. His parents lost sight of him. He wasn’t wearing a jacket.

Mann said he mobilized about 300 people for around two hours, scouring the forest for the child, and soon found him.

Recently, at a local bank, Mann said a man recognized him from that night and asked him if he remembered the incident.

“I said, ‘Yeah sure I do, were you one of the volunteers?’” Mann said. “He says, ‘No, that was my son. . . You helped me that night. . . I just want to thank you again for all that you did.’”

Mann said helping people feels good, even 20 years later. He said people sometimes stop him at grocery stores and around town, thanking him for his service.

“I’m very appreciative of all the comments that people have said over the years,” Mann said. “To me it’s been a great ride. I’ve enjoyed it fully.”

Mann will be leaving the State Attorney’s office within the next week. His position will be taken over by investigator Darry Lloyd.


This entry was posted in Local and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.
 

More Stories in Local

Teacher Conference Aims to Bring Global Perspective Into Classrooms

Gainesville Connected, a conference in Gainesville, aims to equip teachers to engage students on global issues such as poverty.


Anna Claire (left) and Katie Scarlett (right) are two capuchin monkeys that were once pets but now live in the Jungle Friends Primate Sanctuary. Scarlett is blind and Claire is diabetic.

Primate Sanctuaries Feel Stresses of Insufficient Funding

Sanctuaries are struggling to take in primates as researchers and pet owners forgo euthanasia for better homes.


Oct. 23, 2014: Afternoon News in 90

A video roundup of local, state and national stories for readers in North Central Florida.


The Ocala City Council voted not to renew Matthew Brower's contract as city manager on Tuesday. Brower's current contract will expire on Dec. 21.

Ocala City Manager’s Contract Not Renewed

The request to reappoint Matthew Brower as Ocala’s city manager was rejected on a three-to-two vote by the Ocala City Council. Brower was appointed city manager in February 2011, and his contract will now expire on Dec. 21.


Victoria Rusinov administers FluMist to a child at the Control Flu clinic at Littlewood Elementary School.

CDC Studies Effects of Nasal Spray Flu Vaccine Over Traditional Shot for Children

Recent studies suggests a nasal spray form of the flu vaccine is more effective than the flu shot in healthy children ages 2 to 8, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.


Thank you for your support

WUFT depends on the support of our community — people like you — to help us continue to provide quality programming to North Central Florida.
Become a Sustainer
I want to support FM 89.1/NPR
I want to support Florida's 5/PBS
Donate a Vehicle
Day Sponsorship Payments
Underwriting Payments