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Sunday, March 3, 2024

Marion deputies ID victim killed near Dollar General

The Marion County Sheriff’s Office has released the name of the 19-year-old man who was fatally shot near a Dollar General store in Marion Oaks on Saturday afternoon.

According to MCSO, the victim in this case has been identified as Griffin Chase Smith.

Deputies identify 19 year old victim in fatal Marion Oaks shooting
Griffin Chase Smith, 19, was fatally shot in Marion Oaks on December 2, 2023

On Saturday, December 2, at around 3:15 p.m., MCSO deputies responded to the 200 block of Marion Oaks Lane in Ocala in reference to a possible vehicle accident that had occurred in the area behind the Marion Oaks Community Center, according to the sheriff’s office.

Upon arrival, deputies located Smith inside a white four-door 2020 Dodge Ram pickup truck, and he had sustained gunshot wounds. He was transported to a local hospital, where he later succumbed to his injuries.

MCSO Major Crimes detectives launched a homicide investigation, which revealed that Smith was shot multiple times near the Dollar General located at 198 Marion Oaks Boulevard.

MCSO 19 year old man fatally shot in Marion Oaks on December 2, 2023 location of shooting
MCSO detectives state that the shooting occurred near the Dollar General store at 198 Marion Oaks Boulevard

After being shot, Smith drove away in his pickup truck, and his vehicle eventually came to a  stop in the wood line behind the Marion Oaks Community Center, approximately one mile away from the scene of the shooting, according to MCSO.

MCSO 19 year old man fatally shot in Marion Oaks on December 2, 2023 map of area
The victim was found in his pickup truck approximately one mile from where the shooting had occurred

In a press release on Monday afternoon, the sheriff’s office stated that detectives believe this shooting is an isolated incident.

Detectives are seeking information from individuals who may have witnessed the shooting at Dollar General, including any patrons or employees of the numerous businesses in the area of the Dollar General store.

If anyone has information about this incident, the Marion County Sheriff’s Office asks that you call Major Crimes Detective Daniel Pinder at 352-368-3508 or the MCSO non-emergency number of 352-732-9111.

Anyone wishing to remain anonymous can call the Crime Stoppers of Marion County at 352-368-STOP(7867), and reference 23-65 in your tip.