Frustrating. Angering. Maddening.
It is 16 days since Renee Langfritz found out her only child Jason Paul was stabbed to death. She just wants to catch the culprit.
“The daily tears heartache and sadness of not being able to see his face or hear his laugh are unbearable, but most of all, frustrating,” Langfritz said during a press conference at Clearwater Police headquarters Tuesday. “The frustration and anger caused from lack of answers as to why this has happened and who can carry out such a violent attack on another human being, not to mention on our son, is maddening.”
In an effort to generate credible information and leads in the city's first homicide of the year, Paul's family is offering a $10,000 reward, in addition to the $1,000 Crime Stoppers already offered.
Langfritz calmly read from a prepared statement with a framed picture of Jason holding his boxer-mix Marley on a table nearby:
“We are pleading with the public that anyone who has any information, saw anything unusual at the park or on Glenwood Avenue the night of the attack please come forward. It may be the one piece that completes the puzzle...
"This monster needs to be caught and taken off the streets and brought to justice. We, as Jason’s family, want closure.”
Clearwater Mayor George N. Cretekos stood somber and silent as Langfritz spoke. He was there to show solidarity.
“We (the Clearwater community) grieve with them and we encourage the public who may know something to come forward,” Cretekos said. “You may not think it’s important but the police can be the determining factor. A missing piece, two of them put together could be the answer.”
Detectives say Paul, 22, a 2008 Dunedin High grad, was riding his bike home from work at Sunset Point Road and U.S. 19. He stopped at Walmart and bought some cleaning supplies. They were found still strapped to his bike when his body was discovered a block from his house at 12:40 a.m. on Glenwood Avenue.
Det. William Hodgson is lead investigator on the case, which is more than two weeks without a suspect. The hope is the reward might generate new, credible leads.
“It’s critical to identify suspects as soon as possible. We are still actively following up leads but nothing really has panned out for us right now,” Hodgson said. “We have had leads but nothing definitive. Nothing that points us in a positive direction.”