A manager at a popular Daytona Beach restaurant has been beaten to death by a man he met on a dating app, the Volusia County Sheriff’s Office said on Sunday.
Bobby Scott, 63, was reported missing by her husband on January 18 after leaving their home the day before and never returned, the Daytona Beach News Journal reported. Two days later, MPs found Scott’s vehicle in the possession of 20-year-old Michael Harris Jr, who said Scott had loaned it to him for a week.
The investigation eventually revealed that Scott had met Harris on January 17 and had no more news. On Saturday, lawmakers arrested Harris and charged him with second degree murder. Later that day, they found Scott’s body in a wooded area not far from the St Johns River in DeLand.
Scott was the general manager of Caribbean Jack’s, a popular restaurant and bar on the Halifax River named after an infamous ‘rum runner’ of the 1920s.
According to the News Journal, Scott went to the gym on Jan. 17, texting her husband that he “can also stop by a guy’s house” just after noon. It was the last time he heard of him.
Volusia County MPs said he met Harris on the dating app that morning and agreed to meet him in the afternoon. Scott and her husband, they said, had an open relationship and both saw other people. Sheriff Mike Chitwood said investigators believed Harris likely killed Scott the day he met him.
Investigators say Harris beat Scott to death with a 2 by 4 and a bottle of beer, according to Chitwood, who said Harris was a known internet predator.
“Michael Harris has a habit of posing as a gay prostitute, blackmailing and stealing victims, and in this case killing the victim,” the sheriff said.
Scott’s husband told investigators OnStar was tracking his vehicle and MPs found Harris driving. Harris told them Scott gave it to him to drive for a week, but Scott’s husband said that wouldn’t have happened. Upon further questioning, Harris said he met Scott to have sex with him and then drove him to Orlando, where he met another man and let him drive the car. But GPS data showed Scott’s car had never left Volusia County.
Detectives confiscated the car from Harris and obtained a search warrant. They found blood on the outside and inside – and bloody fingerprints that were identified as Harris’.
Chitwood said more charges could be laid and investigators were working on a motive.
âThe only explanation is the car,â he said. âThe victim was not carrying cash.
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[Featured image: Bobby Scott and Michael Harris Jr/Volusia County Sheriffâs Office]