Details of Disappearance
Galehouse went with his roommate to the gay nightclub 2606 in the 2600 block of Armenia Avenue in Tampa, Florida, in the early morning hours of December 20, 2003. Galehouse was a regular at the club. At approximately 2:45 to 3:00 a.m., he told his roommate he was leaving with with two white males he had just met. He has never been heard from again. Galehouse's roommate did not actually see the individuals he left with.
Galehouse's disappearance and presumed murder is known to be connected to the murder of Michael Wayne Wachholtz and may be connected to the disappearances of David Rhodes
, Barry Block
, Mark Jackson
, Mark Thompson
, James Shumaker
, and Bradley Williams
. All of the men are gay, all were within roughly the same age group, and they all disappeared from the same area. Jackson, Rhodes and Block actually lived in and disappeared from the same apartment building in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, although Jackson disappeared seventeen years later than the other two men.
Rhodes and Block, who lived together, disappeared first, in 1988. Shumaker disappeared from Tampa in 1995. Thompson disappeared in 2001 from Clearwater, Florida, and his truck was later found abandoned in Tampa. Williams disappeared in from Tampa in 2001.
Walchholtz disappeared on the day after Galehouse, and he was last seen at his Tampa apartment, which is not far from the 2606 nightclub where Galehouse was last seen. The two men did not know each other, but both were members of the same online dating and chat service, and both frequented gay bars and clubs in the Tampa area. Wachholtz's body was found in mid-January 2004, wrapped in a sheet and stuffed in the back of his 1992 Jeep Cherokee SUV, which was in the parking lot of a Town 'N Country restaurant in Tampa. The other men remain missing.
One of two prime suspects in Wachholtz's and Galehouse's cases is Steven Lorenzo. He lived across the street from Drake Towers, the apartment building Rhodes, Block and Jackson disappeared from. In May 2004, an affadavit was filed in the United States District Court of Tampa which accused Lorenzo of drugging Galehouse and Wachholtz, sexually abusing them, and causing their deaths. Scott Paul Schweikert was named as an accessory after the fact.
Lorenzo was convicted of ten GHB-related charges in 2006 and was sentenced to 200 years in federal prison, and Schweikert was sentenced to 40 years in prison for his role in the crimes. Photos of both Schweikert and Lorenzo are posted with this case summary.
In September 2012, Schweickert was charged with two counts of first-degree murder in the deaths of Wachholtz and Galehouse. The indictment states he "did unlawfully and feloniously aid, abet, assist, cause, incite, advise or encourage" the men's homicides. In June 2016, Schweickert pleaded guilty in Galehouse and Wachholtz's cases and was sentenced to life in prison. This is on top of the 40 years he is already serving for the GHB-related charges. He admitted he and Lorenzo conspired to meet single gay men and turn them into "sex slaves", then either kill them or sell them once they became tired of them.
Schweickert stated he and Lorenzo met Galehouse at 2606 and convinced him to go back to Lorenzo's home for sex, then killed him together, dismembered his remains with an electric saw and dumped the parts in trash bins all over the city. Police found Galehouse's blood on Lorenzo's garage floor, which supports Schweickert's story about the dismemberment. Schweickert and Lorenzo met Wachholtz at the same club the next night, spiked his drink with GHB and killed him.
As part of his plea agreement, Schweickert agreed to testify against Lorenzo. Lorenzo has not actually been charged in any deaths and remains in prison for the GHB charges.
Galehouse moved from Sarasota to Tampa four months before his disappearance. He is a graduate of Sarasota High School. He had been studying interior design at Hillsborough Community College and was employed as a flower arranger at a florist shop. Foul play is suspected in his case due to the circumstances involved.