Suspect charged in death of Tampa Bay muralist Matt Callahan

Keith Mauga, 34, was already serving time for a separate aggravated battery.

click to enlarge Matt Callahan, who was killed in April 2018. - c/o Merge Culture
c/o Merge Culture
Matt Callahan, who was killed in April 2018.

A Tampa man has been charged with manslaughter five months after an altercation that ended with the death of locally loved Bay area muralist Matt Callahan.

BN9 said that the suspect, Keith Mauga, is already serving five years for aggravated battery for an attack on another St. Petersburg man. Mauga, 34, was arrested in prison on the manslaughter charge.

Bay area muralist Matt Callahan dies after altercation

Just after 3 a.m. on April 11, police found Callahan — owner of Man Made Murals (est. 2001) — on a median on Gandy Boulevard. Callahan, 40, was taken to Tampa General Hospital where he was listed in critical condition with bleeding to his brain before being confirmed dead that night. He left behind a wife and 5-year-old son.

In the weeks afterwards, Callahan’s father, Michael, an attorney, sought to hold the man who punched his son accountable. 

“I think it’s very, very important for any family member of a child whose been murdered to see that justice is done, and it takes a load off your brain and your mind," Michael Callahan explained. "At the same time, it’s important to the public that people like him are not on the street."

See more of Callahan’s work here, and stay tuned for details on an art show remembering Callahan, which is supposed to happen on December 1 at Coppertail Brewing Company in Ybor City.

About The Author

Ray Roa

Read his 2016 intro letter and disclosures from 2022 and 2021. Ray Roa started freelancing for Creative Loafing Tampa in January 2011 and was hired as music editor in August 2016. He became Editor-In-Chief in August 2019. Past work can be seen at Suburban Apologist, Tampa Bay Times, Consequence of Sound and The...
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