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Suspect at large in Gulf County homicide

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Stephen Michael Smith

Stephen Michael Smith

PORT SAINT JOE, Fla (WMBB)– One man is dead after a homicide in Gulf County. The suspect is still at large.

Shortly after 10:00 am Monday, the Gulf County Sheriff’s Office responded to a shots fired call at 204 Sea Pines Lane, in the Gulf Aire Subdivision.

“Our officers responded out there and it was determined that a person had been shot. The subject had been transported by ems over to bay county hospital where he underwent surgery and passed away during surgery,” said Mike Harrison, Gulf County Sheriff.

The victim, 30-year-old Daniel Lee Upton of Lakeland, Florida died from a single gunshot wound.

Authorities have identified the shooter as 25-year-old Stephen Michael Smith of LaGrange, Georgia. Smith is still at large.

Smith is a white male, approximately 5’10″ tall and weighs approximately 170 lbs. He has brown hair and green eyes. He is currently wanted for absconding from a work release program out of the state of Georgia where he was serving his sentence for robbery.

The Sheriff’s Office also believes they know the motive, but cannot give details at this time.

The Florida Department of Law Enforcement is assisting in the investigation.

“They will be searching the house collecting any forensic evidence that’s available. We also have a vehicle that was potentially involved in this that we will be searching as well,” said Harrison.

Authorities say the two men knew each other prior to the shooting. They say the public is not at risk.

“It was an isolated incident amongst people that knew one another. The public is not at risk at this time,” said Harrison.

If you have any information on his location, contact the Gulf County Sheriff’s Office at 850-227-1115, or you may remain anonymous by calling Crime Stoppers at 785-TIPS.

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