Arrest made in fatal 2017 hit-and-run crash

DNA evidence helps police ID suspect as Jeremy Wharton

Jeremy Wharton
Jeremy Wharton

NEW SMYRNA BEACH, Fla. – A man identified as a suspect in a fatal hit-and-run crash after DNA evidence taken from the crime scene in 2017 linked him to the crime has been arrested, according to the New Smyrna Beach Police Department.

An arrest warrant was issued Tuesday for Jeremy Wharton, 32, along with a plea to the public to come forward with information about his whereabouts. On Monday, police said Wharton was arrested in Daytona Beach.

Authorities said Wharton was driving a 2006 Chevrolet Tahoe on State Road 44 east around 2 a.m. on Oct. 29 when he was involved in a crash with another vehicle, driven by 21-year-old Kaelee Morrell.

Morrell died at the scene of the crash. 

Wharton was charged with leaving the scene of a crash involving a fatality and leaving the scene of a crash with serious injury. 

He is being held without bond.

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