Clearwater police have solved a 5-year-old cold case, charging a man currently in Pasco County Jail in the slaying of a cab driver behind a Clearwater strip mall. Police on Friday say Tisen KaShawn Washington, 24, robbed and fatally shot Jack LaGrand on Sept. 17, 2008. LaGrand, 51, was found dead halfway out of the open driver's door of his cab behind a strip mall near U.S. 19 and Enterprise Road. Police had said LaGrand was killed between 1 and 2 a.m. and a plaza business owner found him about 7:30 a.m.
Surveillance video, released during the initial investigation showed a man fitting Washington's description leaving the scene of the homicide. With the help of the State Attorney's Office, Clearwater Police Chief Anthony Holloway formed a cold case unit in October 2011 to revisit homicides that had occurred years ago. "Our main job is to try to find some closure for the families," Holloway said. LaGrand's wife, Donna, thanked police in a written statement read during a news conference on Friday. "On behalf of Jack's family, we thank the Clearwater Police Department, especially Detective Tom Dawe and Detective Steve Bohling, for their continuing efforts to solve Jack's murder," the statement said. "After five long years, the man who committed this senseless act will be brought to justice. "The detectives working on this cold case never gave up after all these years. Finally, the family will have closure. To those families facing similar circumstances, never give up hope." According to jail records, Washington was booked into Pasco County Jail in March on charges including the sale of ecstacy and cocaine.