A 57-year-old man has been arrested and charged with murdering a grandmother in front of her 3-year-old and 2-year-old grandchildren in 2018.
Bobby Lee Story, who spent the past several years in prison for a 2018 attempted murder charge in Tampa, will now face charges related to the murder of his then-girlfriend, 41-year-old Denise Hayes.
Hayes was found on August 24, 2018, after a neighbor found a 2-year-old and 3-year-old child wandering alone in the area of Indian Hills Road and North Pine Hills Road. Those children led the neighbor to a home at 3422 Pipe O’ the Glen Way, where Hayes’ body was found. Hayes was killed by a single gunshot wound to the head.
At the time, Orange County Sheriff’s Office detectives determined that Story was a suspect in her death because of a history of reported domestic violence. Shortly after the murder, Story fled Orange County.
Through interviews with Hayes’ daughters, detectives learned that Story had attacked Hayes on multiple occasions. During one such incident, Story stabbed a nephew of Hayes’ in the face after the man tried to intervene and stop Story from beating Hayes with a cane. At the time of that incident in July 2018, Hayes’ daughters say that Story made threats to have them in “black dresses” at their mother’s funeral.
Records show that at the time of the Hayes’ murder, Story had just completed approximately 28 years in state and federal prison for a variety of convictions, including burglary of an occupied structure, grand theft, robbery with a firearm, and armed robbery of a United States Post Office.
Two weeks before her death, Hayes’ daughter said she was giving a ride to her mother and Story when she discovered that Story was armed. The daughter asked Story to get out of the vehicle and, after doing so, recalled her mother stating “this man is going to kill me,” before asking the daughter to take care of her younger sibling in the event of Hayes’ death.
During their investigation, detectives were able to obtain clothing that Story discarded at a relative’s house the day after the murder. The clothing was forensically tested by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement and was found to contain a mixture of Hayes’ DNA and Story’s DNA.
Story was arrested in September 2018 by Tampa Police Department officers for a separate, unrelated murder charge. Multiple witnesses interviewed in that case stated that Story told them he was on the run in Tampa for murdering “his old lady” with a gunshot to the head. One witness told authorities that Story had seen Hayes with another man and killed her as a result.
When he was arrested in Tampa in 2018, Story was in possession of a diaper bag that matched the description of a diaper bag that belonged to Hayes. That bag was taken from the scene of her death, with its contents scattered in the home in which she was found.
As a result of the conviction from his 2018 arrest, Story was to spend five years in prison and was originally scheduled to be released on December 11, 2022.
On October 9, 2022, detectives who work for the Orange County Cold Case division obtained a warrant for Story for second degree murder with a firearm. Story was transferred from the Florida Department of Corrections into the Orange County Jail on November 15, 2022.