MANATEE -- The week surrounding Christmas is thought by many to be the best chance during the year for peace and goodwill among men.
But for Manatee and Sarasota counties this year, those eight days brought an excess of violence.
In all, there were four deaths from seven violent incidents between Dec. 19-27, including five shootings and a vehicular homicide.
The week of violent incidents began Friday, Dec. 19, with an argument and a stabbing in the parking lot of a Bradenton convenience store according to the Manatee County Sheriff's Office.
The victim became involved in an altercation with two men about 9:56 p.m. in the parking lot of a 14th Street West convenience store.
When the argument turned physical, one of the suspects reportedly stabbed the victim several times in the abdomen. He was taken to Blake Medical Center with non-life threatening injuries. No arrests have been made.
Hours later, at 5:55 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 20, 25-year-old Samuel Conde was discovered shot to death near a backyard bar on Ninth Street East.
Conde was found lying in a driveway. He was taken to Manatee Memorial Hospital where he was pronounced dead, according to the Manatee County Sheriff's Office.
A second gunshot victim, a 29-year-old man, presented himself at a local hospital with non-life threatening injuries. He was treated and released, according to the sheriff's office.
Gang activity may have contributed to the shooting, according to the Manatee County Sheriff's Office. No arrests have been made.
About 20 hours later, at 1:20 a.m. Sunday, Dec. 21, Todd Thompson, 24, of Bradenton, and Vincent DiPina, 26, of Sarasota, were shot and killed when gunfire was exchanged in Kay's Lounge in north Sarasota.
Two other gunshot victims drove themselves to Sarasota Memorial Hospital, where they were treated for non-life threatening injuries and were released.
No arrests have been made, according to the Sarasota County Sheriff's website.
At about 1:08 a.m. Tuesday, Dec. 23, deputies from the Manatee County Sheriff's Office received reports that people in two cars traveling north in the 4000 block of Ninth Street East were shooting at each other, the third shooting incident of the holiday week. No injuries were reported.
Detectives are trying to determine if the shooting was linked to Conde's death on Dec. 20.
At 8:32 a.m,. Tuesday, Dec. 23, Trever Keith Johnson, 23, was charged with aggravated assault with a firearm for an incident that occurred in the 300 block of First Avenue East, when he allegedly fired two shots at a woman who had been picking through his garbage. The woman was not injured in the fourth shooting incident of the week.
At about 5 p.m. Christmas Day, Thursday, Dec. 25., Palmetto High School student and football player Kyle O'Halloran, 18, was killed when he held onto a car as it tried to speed away from his home in the 1800 block of 14th Street West during an apparent drug transaction gone awry, according to the Palmetto Police Department.
Witnesses told police that O'Halloran was hanging out of the driver's-side window of the Lincoln Town Car until he fell out, hit his head and died.
Roberto Betancourt, 20, has been arrested and is charged with vehicular homicide, leaving the scene of a crash involving a death, reckless driving and driving without a valid license, according to a police report. He was being held without bond in the Manatee County jail.
The fifth shooting incident of the Christmas week occurred at 12:50 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 27, when a woman was shot while inside a vehicle in the 1400 block of 24th Street East, Palmetto, according to a Manatee County Sheriff's Office report.
The woman was among a group of people drinking beer outside a residence when she told deputies she heard shots being fired and then realized she had been shot.
She was was taken to Manatee Memorial Hospital with non-life threatening injuries, an additional report by the Bradenton police said. No arrests have been made in the case.
Anyone with information about any of theese cases is asked to call the sheriff's office at 941-747-3011 or Crime Stoppers at 866-634-TIPS.
Richard Dymond, Herald reporter, can be reached at 941-745-7072 or contact him via Twitter@RichardDymond.