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Polk County man accused of killing girlfriend of more than 20 years arrested, sheriff's office says

Larry Smith edit.png
Posted at 4:38 PM, Jul 27, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-28 12:31:09-04

POLK COUNTY, Fla — The Polk County Sheriff's Office says a man wanted for killing his girlfriend of more than 20 years is in custody after he was located by the Marion County Sheriff's Office.

Authorities said on Tuesday that 40-year old Tashia Smith, of Auburndale, was found dead in her home on Monday. She was shot multiple times, according to detectives.

Deputies said they were searching for 57-year old Larry Smith after homicide detectives determined that he was the person who shot Tashia.

Polk County Sheriff Grad Judd referred to Larry Smith as a "dangerous man" that needed to be locked up. Judd said there was a history of domestic violence perpetrated by Larry Smith against Tashia.

Tashia Smith was reported missing to the Lakeland Police Department on July 26. She was last seen by her sister on Sunday, July 25 at around 9:36 a.m. at the Wing-Stop restaurant in Lakeland where Tashia worked.

Tashia was supposed to return to work later that day at 5 p.m. but she never showed up.

"Larry Smith’s prior criminal history consists of 21 felony charges and 18 misdemeanors," Judd said. "He has been to prison four times. Among his prior charges are: burglary, armed robbery, false imprisonment, aggravated assaults, numerous batteries, grand theft, retail thefts, resisting, destroying evidence, and drug possessions."

Authorities have not released any additional information on when or where Larry Smith was found. Polk County authorities say Smith will be on his way to the county jail soon.