HOMOSASSA, Fla. (FOX 13) - The Citrus County Sheriff's Office has made an arrest in a murder case involving a Homosassa man whose remains were found in a trash can in wooded area in Citrus County last year.
26-year-old Emery Whitt of Virginia is facing one count of second-degree murder in connection with the death of his roommate 33-year-old Ryan McClellan.
Sheriff Mike Prendergast along with detectives announced Whitt's arrest at a news conference Thursday after several months of investigating. McClellan was first reported missing in September 2017. A month later, his remains were discovered in a trash can in a wooded area in Homosassa roughly 3 miles from his home.
"We're horrified that someone could take not only another person's life," the Sheriff said. "But just discard them in the woods just about 7 miles south of here like it's trash."
According to documents from the Sheriff's Office, roughly 2 weeks after McClellan went missing investigators discovered multiple withdraws from his bank account made by Whitt, who had only been roommates with McClellan for just a couple weeks. They also discovered several of McClellan's firearms in Whitt's possession and arrested him on unrelated fraud charges.
"The suspect we tried to interview him on occasions in Virginia," Citrus County Sheriff's Office Detective Jonathan Richey said. "We feel like we evaded us a little bit there."
"After all these months of hard work by our detectives, by gathering all the forensic evidence by the state attorney's office," Prendergast said. "The judge was able to sign a homicide warrant for Emery Whitt."
Whitt is now being held at the Citrus County Detention Facility charged with one count of second-degree murder.
"We want to get the family the best closure that we can and if you have any information that could help us ensure that we have all the evidence in this case we would sincerly appreciate it," Prendergast said. "So we can get before the judge when this case goes to trial."
Anyone with information is asked to call the Citrus County Sheriff's Office at 352-726-1121.