Murder suspects flee vehicle to escape capture

St Johns County deputies responding to the sounds of gunfire shortly before 2:00 a.m. this morning have discovered the body of a man, believed to have been shot and killed outside his home near Usina Road and Cowan Road.

Historic City News learned that as deputies were approaching the Cowan Road residence of neighbors who heard and reported the gunfire, a late model white SUV sped past them as it fled the area.  According to the latest report from the department, deputies turned around to pursue the SUV which they found abandoned at the end of Old Tyme Avenue. 

A canvas of residents where the vehicle was located uncovered a surveillance video showing four subjects fleeing from the car into the woods at the dead end of Old Tyme Avenue with a deputy in pursuit only moments behind.

Aided with K-9 units as well as aviation support, law enforcement began a manhunt in the woods surrounding the scene.

What we know so far is that before 6:00 a.m., one of the fleeing occupants was located in the woods along Usina Road.  He is being detained while the search continues for the three remaining males believed to still be in the area.

Anyone who may see individuals in the area who are wandering in the community or in the SR-16 and I-95 area, or who may observe vehicles driving around looking to pick these subjects up, please use caution and call 911 immediately.

The investigation is still in the preliminary stages and the search for the suspects is ongoing.

The vehicle has been processed and taken to the sheriff’s vehicle processing facility.