Escaped Georgia inmate named as suspect in Florida murder
An escaped Georgia prison inmate is now a suspect in the shooting death of a Florida man whose body was discovered Monday, investigators say.
Stephen Michael Smith, 34, failed to return from his work detail Aug.15 at the Clayton Transactional Center in Clayton County, where he was serving a 10-year sentence for robbery.
On Monday, the Gulf County Sheriff's Office identified Smith as the prime suspect in the murder of 30-year-old Daniel Lee Upton of Lakeland, Fla.
On Tuesday, the sheriff's office announced the arrest of Destiny Jene Terry, 44, on a charge of being a principal to second-degree murder. In a statement, the office said Upton was able to identify Smith as the person who shot him and added that Terry was present at the time.
The sheriff's office said that Terry "helped facilitate the contact between Smith and Upton," but did not elaborate further. The office's statement added that the killing is believed to be the result of a drug deal gone wrong.
Lee was found dead Monday at a home in Port St. Joe, a sparsely populated community in the Florida panhandle.
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The Georgia Department of Corrections issued a lookout for Smith on Tuesday and the U.S. Marshals Service offered a $10,000 reward for his capture.
He was described as 5 feet, 10 inches tall and 180 pounds, with tattoos on his arms and neck.