Tampa Police Arrest Murder Suspect

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Date of Incident: March 6, 2011, 6:31 p.m.
Location: 3700 North Florida Avenue (Kentucky Avenue/Florida Avenue)

Victim: Michael Smith Ayuso, H/M, DOB: 5/25/1971, 5654 Louis XIV Court, Tampa

Suspect: Jason Smith H/M, DOB: 11/10/80, 1111 West Union Street, Tampa
Charges: First Degree Murder
Date of Arrest: 3/7/11

Details: On 3/6/2011, the suspect pulled into the parking lot of a business at the intersection of Kentucky Avenue and Florida Avenue and waited 21 minutes for the victim's vehicle to arrive in the area. The suspect then exited the passenger side of a Honda Accord and walked a short distance to the victim's vehicle on Florida Avenue. When the victim saw the suspect, he pulled over to the side of Florida Avenue so they could talk. The suspect spoke to the victim through the passenger window and then shot him several times in the upper body. The suspect then fled back to the waiting Honda Accord. The surveillance camera of a nearby business captured photographs of the suspect exiting the suspect vehicle before the crime and then re-entering the car after the shooting. The suspect identified himself as the person in the video. Witnesses also positively identified the suspect and placed him at the crime scene.

Just after 12:00 p.m. today, officers were searching for the suspect, when they spotted his vehicle on North Boulevard. They followed the suspect vehicle a short distance then pulled him over at Florida Avenue and Virginia Avenue. The suspect and two witnesses were detained for questioning. All three were cooperative with detectives. The suspect is en route to Orient Road Jail on a First Degree Murder charge.

Laura McElroy