PALM CITY, Fla. — A Fort Lauderdale man is charged with attempted murder and carjacking after going on a crime spree in Martin County Wednesday morning, officials said.
Tavis White, 23, is accused of stabbing a housemate and carjacking a man who was on his way to work, investigators said.
According to the Martin County Sheriff's Office, White was rooming with the stabbing victim at a local shared housing facility for men near Port Salerno.
The victim told deputies he was sleeping when he was attacked and stabbed multiple times in the head and neck area.
“He’s sitting in the chair covered in blood, he won’t tell me what happened,” a 911 caller said, calling from Garden Street in Stuart where the stabbing happened.
Deputies said, following the attack, White reportedly ran to a neighboring home on SE Iris Street and carjacked a man. The man called 911, saying “I see him running, he come at me, and tell my wife get out of there, get out of there,” the man said. The caller said the suspect pushed his wife out of the passenger seat before stealing his car.
Deputies pursued White in the stolen vehicle, performed a VIT maneuver and were able to disable it along Martin Highway, near the Cobblestone, Stuart West entrance.
“He spun out and then regained control and then he himself, the suspect, crashed into an innocent civilian driving in the area,” said Chief Deputy John Budensiek.
Budensiek said White got out of the first stolen car and tried to steal the car he hit, but that driver’s door was locked and the driver was able to get away.
Deputies were able to capture White just before 6 a.m. in a wooded area in Palm City.
The sheriff's office said the stabbing victim is expected to survive.
The carjacking victim was treated at the scene and released.
Detectives are now searching for the attempted carjacking victim who was able to disengage from White and drive off. The person was driving a dark-color SUV.
Detectives said White has a history of violence that includes past carjacking charges, grand theft auto, and aggravated battery on law enforcement.
White is now charged with attempted murder, carjacking and fleeing and eluding.
People who live on Garden Street said they feel safe and hope the stabbing incident is a one-time problem at the shared-housing facility they say also operates as a home for rehabilitation.
"I hope everybody is okay and they generally don’t bring that type of person back around,” said neighbor Dory, who did not want to give her last name.
“He came into the county to get help, unfortunately, the help didn’t work for him, and he reverted back to the lifestyle he was living previous to trying to get help,” Budensiek said.
White is being held at the Martin County Jail.