Anthony, AKA James Firefox, was age 20. As a furry fan, he shared fandom creativity through music. As a person, media reports say he was autistic, but reaching for independence. Public buses in his neighborhood in Tampa, Florida took him to his job where he was packaging hurricane relief supplies. A light glance at his online profiles shows that he expressed frustration about social difficulties, but seemed to find a lot of happiness with music, cartoons and furry art. Sometimes it was edgy but other parts showed self awareness like criticizing memes about the las vegas shooting out of sensitivity for others.
On October 19, he got on an unfamiliar bus line when his usual one was shut down. He ended up in the proverbial wrong place at the wrong time and became an unlucky statistic. He was the third victim of a series of shootings in Tampa’s Seminole Heights neighborhood that appear to be done by a serial killer.
Ever since that time, his family has been actively speaking out for justice. His father said he had been assaulted and robbed earlier in 2017 in a different neighborhood and that his son’s special needs made him an easy target. Media says his father and stepmother have “remained heavily involved in the community since his death” and been “walking the streets, talking to people, desperately looking for answers.”
A puzzling part of the story is lack of motive, spreading fear in the community that has affected businesses and led Tampa’s mayor to be unusually outspoken about stopping the crimes. There’s currently a $41,000 reward for helping to close the case.
On November 14th, a fourth victim was reported. This time there’s a witness description resembling an earlier person of interest seen on security video.
Anyone who knew him is encouraged to help fill in the story. It gives me a feeling that you may never realize what’s going on behind someone’s fursona you see online, when they’re around or after they’re not.