Police sketch might hold clue to man's death
DEERFIELD BEACH, Fla. (WSVN) -- A Connecticut family is hoping a newly released police sketch of a potential person of interest will help solve the mystery behind the death of a South Florida visitor.
The body of 47-year-old Jay Harper was found on Oct. 17 in the water near some rocks behind the Deerfield Beach Embassy Suites. "My husband went on business like he always does, and he didn't come home," said Karen Harper, the victim's wife.
Just after midnight on Oct. 17, Harper, who was in town on business, had reportedly spoke with a local resident on a bench at the hotel after having a few drinks with friends. Around 4:15 a.m., a deputy patrolling the beach followed footprints in the sand and found his body.
Police don't think Harper's death was an accident. "Some of the injuries, I don't believe, were caused by the rocks," said BSO Sergeant John Berrena.
Authorities were able to put together a sketch of someone witnesses remember seeing in the area. According to Berrena, this man made Harper's friends uneasy. "This is going to be our best lead, this guy," Berrena said.
The Harpers would have been married for 25 years in April. "He loved doing yardwork, loved being with his kids, loved watching his Patriots, just an awesome guy," Karen said.
They are now hoping that someone will recognize the man in the sketch and come forward. "It's hard to think that someone could do this to such a loving person, and so I feel we need solid answers," Megan said.
If you recognize the person in the sketch, or if you have any other piece of information about this crime, call Broward County Crime Stoppers at 954-493-TIPS. Remember, you can always remain anonymous, and you may be eligible for a reward.
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