Police: Man confesses to killing woman in Lake City motel room

Columbia County deputies say 60-year-old had trauma on upper body

LAKE CITY, Fla. - Dwayne Arnaz Paige Jr., 36, was arrested Saturday in connection to the death of 60-year-old woman found dead near Lake City, according to the Columbia County Sheriff's Office.

Detectives said Paige confessed to killing Patricia Woods, whose body was found last Tuesday in a room at the Shands Motel on East Duval Street, just west of State Road 100.

Paige was arrested and booked into the Columbia County Detention Facility on one count of murder and was being held without bond.

“I’m extremely proud of the men and women of the Sheriff’s Office and especially the detectives that worked around the clock to bring closure to the victim’s family.” Sheriff Mark Hunter said in a statement Sunday morning. “This case involved a lot of old-fashioned investigative work with a combination of great community assistance.”

Authorities did not give a motive in Woods' death, but said Paige was identified as a suspect through interviews with her family and friends.

Deputies were performing a welfare check on Woods, who was staying at the motel. There was no answer at the door and neighbors said they had not seen her but that it was normal for days to go by without her being seen.

Deputies had the manager unlock the door and found Wood dead. The Sheriff's Office said there was trauma to her upper body and called detectives to begin a homicide investigation.

The Sheriff's Office said it has been in contact with Wood's family. According to neighbors, Wood's sister was the person who called for deputies to do a welfare check on Wood. 

"We were shocked because she never, hardly ever, came out of her room. She just stayed in her room all the time," said Diana Perry, Wood's neighbor of two years. "She was funny. She had a good sense of humor."

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