Florida Man Arrested for Husband’s Murder After Months of Suspicion

Florida Man Arrested for Husband’s Murder After Months of Suspicion

In a significant development in a Marion County homicide investigation, deputies have arrested Herbert Swilley, age 55, on charges of first-degree murder and tampering with evidence in connection with the death of his husband, Timothy Floyd Smith. The arrest, which took place on Friday, concluded months of speculation after Smith was found dead following a welfare check initiated when he did not appear for work on March 24.

Smith, 59, was discovered brutally murdered in an apartment he shared with Swilley. Although Swilley had been a figure of interest since August when deputies publicly identified him as a suspect, it was not until recently that sufficient evidence was accrued to facilitate his arrest. Reports indicate that Swilley had previously indicated a willingness to cooperate with the investigation, provided he was granted immunity – a condition that law enforcement officials did not accept.

The ongoing investigation has revealed that Smith may have been preparing to leave for a new job in a different county, potentially without Swilley, around the time of his death. Additionally, it emerged that Swilley was the beneficiary of life insurance policies totaling $333,000, which he stood to collect upon Smith’s death.

Forensic evidence suggests that Smith was administered a lethal dose of the antihistamine diphenhydramine before being strangled. Subsequent to the murder, authorities allege Swilley attempted to conceal the crime by staging a false crime scene and using household cleaners to obliterate evidence.

The investigation also uncovered that surveillance footage from the couple’s security system was missing for the night of Smith’s murder. Furthermore, Swilley’s initial statements to the authorities were found to be fraught with discrepancies that did not align with the evidence gathered.

The Marion County Sheriff’s Office has not released further details pending the ongoing investigation. Swilley remains incarcerated without bond, as the judicial process unfolds in what appears to be a deliberate and financially motivated crime.

Lou Nightingale
Author: Lou Nightingale

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