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Police ID City's First Homicide Victim in 2 Years

Jason Stone, 35, was well known in Sarasota as a DJ and singer several years ago.

A 35-year-old man was shot to death in his home Thursday in the city's first homicide in two years, according to a report from the Bradenton Police Department.

Jason Matthew Stone, the general manager for in Bradenton, was killed by a single shot to his head. His wife came home around 11:30 p.m. and saw him laying on the floor of their house in the 2900 block of 29th Avenue West, according to a report from the Bradenton Police Department. She ran to a neighbor's, where she called police.

Officers confirmed that Stone was killed by a single gunshot.

The couple's young son was at his grandparents' home.

In the basic information about himself on his Facebook page, Stone wrote: "If Jesus Christ can save my life....what do you think he can do for you? Only one way to find out!! Go ALL IN BABY!!

"I guess this is a new chapter in my life. The best and final chapter. I gave my life to God on Sept 30th, 2010. And it's been a wild ride ever since. Many, if not all, of you know the life I left behind. If you are one of the many many people that I hurt by my destructive behaviors, I am sorry and I hope that you can find forgiveness. I love all of you. My friends and family from my former life and into this new one. And I will spend the rest of my time here on this earth making things right."

A friend who worked with Stone on the Sarasota music scene said he was a tremendous talent with an amazing singing voice.

"I tried to get him to go on American Idol," he was that good, said Tobi Morgan. 

Morgan said Stone was a popular karaoke DJ in Sarasota from 2005 through 2008. He was voted the top karaoke DJ two years running in SRQ magazine.

He joined a rock and roll band while he had some dark days, Morgan said, before meeting his wife, "who saved his life."

"She helped him turn his life around," Morgan said. "She completely changed his life, straightened it out and did wonders for him."

Captain Warren T. Merriman III, commander of the department's patrol division, said that no one called in reports of gunshots overnight, "which is weird, because last time we got numerous calls when there was a gun shot in that neighborhood."

Detectives were out canvassing the neighborhood last night, looking for witnesses or clues in the shooting. Merriman said most of the neighbors were sleeping last night. Police were back in the area Friday morning knocking on doors.

The medical examiner was performing an autopsy Friday, and crime scene investigators are out at the house where the body was discovered, Merriman said.

Merriman said it does not appear that the shooting is related to any recent crimes, including home invasions, that the Manatee County Sheriff's Office has been investigating.

Officers do not have a suspect at this time. 

It is the city's first homicide since 2009. Crime rates in Bradenton have been on a steady decline since 2004.

Anyone with information about the case may call Bradenton police at 941-932-9300, ext. 311. To remain anonymous and be eligible for a cash reward of up to $1,000, call Crime Stoppers toll free at 866-634-8477 (TIPS) or send an anonymous E-Tip at manateecrimestoppers.com.

FAMILY of Jason Stone August 20, 2011 at 10:59 AM
To "friends" of Jason that left the above comment-I am his CLOSE FAMILY and know more then you ever will. I know he talked very highly of his wife S. But he Loved her so much that he never could let her go-Always giving her another chance. She did DESTROY him and now she has DESTROYED L. life. I do not mean to come across so angry and I cannot give my name At this time for certain reasons. There is SO much pain in our family right now and I will not let a journalist who did not do their research before posting this Untrue info. go on without printing the truth. You will see the truth come out soon. This is first murder in 2 years...so Hopefully it will be solved quickly.
FAMILY of Jason Stone August 20, 2011 at 11:02 AM
PLEASE do not print our Families names on here....L. That is very disrespectful
Toni Whitt (Editor) August 20, 2011 at 12:43 PM
I just want to let you know I reached out to both family and friends and to the police. I am open to any phone calls or information you have that can shed more light on this story. Please give me a call at 941-348-0668 if you can give me information that I can find or confirm if you don't want to be quoted.
mary August 22, 2011 at 02:24 AM
its just so sad
Shannon S. April 17, 2013 at 08:53 AM
It's now April of 2013. Not a second goes by without me thinking of what could possibly have happened in that home that August the 18th evening. I don't know who posted the first comment here, but could not agree more. One thing I do know for certain, Jason is missed. We have a daughter, and a history of friendship that extends back.......at least 13 years. Jason was my family. I venture to say that I was his as well. Why hasn't this case been solved?? Bitter family members, journalists, and even police detectives may have given up...but this tragedy haunts my life daily.. Love you Jason. -Shannon

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