Six people, including a 15-year-old girl and three other teens, are accused of killing a 15-year-old Belleview boy, burning his body in a fire pit and putting his remains into paint cans, according to the Marion County Sheriff's Office. They were arrested Tuesday night.
Detectives said Seath Tyler Jackson was attacked and shot multiple times Sunday after being lured to a home on 53rd Avenue in Summerfield, which is south of Ocala.
Jackson was reported missing Monday.
On Tuesday, a woman told deputies her 16-year-old son had witnessed Jackson's killing. The teen, who has been charged with murder, told detectives how the group plotted and carried out the crime, deputies said.
According to deputies, Jackson was hit on the head with a wooden object and shot multiple times by 18-year-old Michael Bargo, who is charged with first-degree murder. Bargo was arrested late Tuesday night in Bradford County, where he fled to stay with friends, deputies said. They said he was found in the back yard of a home near Starke holding a large fishing knife.
Investigators said Jackson's body was burned in an effort to hide evidence.
The others arrested were:
- Charlie Kay Ely, 18, of Summerfield, who is charged with first-degree murder.
- Amber E. Wright, 15, of Summerfield, who is charged with first-degree murder.
- Justin Soto, 20, of Summerfield, who is charged with first-degree murder.
- James Havens, 37, of Summerfield, who is charged with accessory after the fact to first-degree murder.
- Kyle Hooper, 16, of Summerfield, who is charged with first-degree murder.
Deputies said Hooper, Wright, Ely, Soto and Bargo were involved in the planning and luring of Jackson to the home.
After being shot, Jackson tried to leave the house but was tackled and held by Soto and again shot by Bargo several times, deputies said.
Then, according to deputies, Bargo broke the teen's knees, and others hog-tied him and put his body in a sleeping bag, which was placed in a fire pit in the back yard and burned. At that point, according to the Sheriff's Office, the group used bleach to clean the house and shoveled Jackson's remains into 5-gallon paint cans.
According to the Sheriff's Office, some of the suspects told investigators that Bargo shot Jackson. The Sheriff's Office said it was later discovered that Havens was aware of the plan to kill Jackson and assisted with the disposal of the remains. Also, Havens gave Bargo a ride to Starke in an effort to avoid capture, deputies said.
Investigators said they were still searching for a .22-caliber revolver used in the slaying. The Sheriff's Office said a dive team found three 5-gallon paint buckets Wednesday afternoon in a lime rock pit off State Road 40, and the contents were being tested to determine if they contained Jackson's remains.
Authorities did not immediately release a motive for the killing, but said there was an ongoing feud between Bargo and the victim, who had had a relationship with the 15-year-old girl. Deputies said the teen who told them about the crime said the leader of the group that killed Jackson was jealous of him.
All six were being held in the Marion County Jail.