Police investigate homicide after body found along Ocala road

Man ID’d as 26-year-old Stephen Edward Woods II

OCALA, Fla. – Police are investigating a homicide after finding a man’s body along an Ocala road Thursday, according to the department.

The death was reported around 8:23 a.m. Thursday near North Magnolia Avenue and Northwest 14th Street, causing road closures in the area for part of Thursday, police said.

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Capt. Sandra Duryea with the Ocala Police Department said police found the individual, later identified as 26-year-old Stephen Edward Woods II, on the side of the road with no vital signs.

“At this time, it is a death investigation,” Duryea said.

Ocala resident, Stacey Labrecque, was taking her son to practice Thursday morning when she saw the investigation taking place near her home.

“I was nervous because I wanted to know why the road was blocked off and what happened,” Labrecque said.

Another resident, Jaquelina Fox, said the neighborhood is usually a quiet area.

“I mean it’s pretty scary I have... 7 children actually,” Fox said.

Police said this is not a threat to the public, but parents like Fox are concerned for their children’s safety.

“My children are always outside, they’re always playing,” Fox said. “So now we’re kind of cautious about letting them outside because I don’t know what happened. Like I don’t know if it was a dispute... domestic issue, or did someone just decide to do something to someone? That’s very scary.”

Police are looking to speak with anyone who saw unusual activity in the area Wednesday night, the post states. Those with information were urged to call (352) 369-7000, or Crimeline to remain anonymous by calling 1-800-423-TIPS (8477) or texting **8477.

No other information was shared.

Note: Due to the information provided, this map depicts the general area of the investigation and not necessarily its exact location.

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About the Authors:

Brandon, a UCF grad, joined the ClickOrlando team in November 2021. Before joining News 6, Brandon worked at WDBO.

Emily joined WKMG-TV in November 2022.