UPDATE: Victim of fatal Weirsdale shooting was a former Citrus County sheriff’s deputy
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MARION COUNTY, Fla. (WCJB) - The Weirsdale man killed in a fatal shooting on Tuesday morning was a retired Citrus County deputy sheriff who had served for 25 years.
This is according to the latest Marion County Sheriff’s Office report. Deputies say the victim, 52-year-old Steven Smolensky, went to the location to deliver propane for his employer, Suburban Propane.
Inside the home, Smolensky was confronted by the accused shooter, 38-year-old Steven Swearingen, who was armed with a pistol and asked the victim about his presence in the residence.
Smolensky replied that he was there to fill the propane tank. According to the report, the victim then attempted to flee to his vehicle, but Swearing held the victim at gunpoint.
Consequently, Swearing admitted to shooting the victim multiple times. The suspect is a convicted felon with an extensive criminal history, including violent crimes towards law enforcement.
Swearingen is under arrest and has been transported to the Marion County Jail, where he is held without bond.
When Ms. Nandini Sankara, Spokesperson for Suburban Propane, was reached out to for comment, she replied:
It is with great sadness that we acknowledge the passing of our colleague, Steve Smolensky on 11/30/21. Steve was a dedicated public servant with the state of Florida for 25 years, and a valued employee of Suburban Propane since September 2018. He will be deeply missed by the customers he served, the team he worked alongside, and the entire Suburban Propane family. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends. At Suburban Propane, the health, safety, and security of our employees, customers, and local communities is our utmost priority. We continue to work with the authorities on this matter, and are unable to comment further at this time due to the ongoing investigation.
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