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Anyone with information is asked to call FMPD at 321-7700, Crime Stoppers at 1-800-780-TIPS or text message C-R-I-M-E-S (274637) Keyword FMPD. Tipsters can remain anonymous. No further information available. Updates will be issued via e-mail.

Location where body was found


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Fort Myers police are working to identify a man whose body was found lying on the Tarpon Street fishing pier early Sunday, the 20th homicide for the city this year.

Police responded to the scene at 2:50 a.m. after a couple walking in the area made the discovery.

Police are calling the man’s death a homicide, the 20th for the city this year. That matches the number of homicides for Fort Myers in 2011 and is the highest number of such deaths since at least 2000.

Sunday night police were still investigating the circumstances surrounding the death as well as trying to identify the victim.

The Tarpon Street fishing pier off Palm Beach Boulevard in east Fort Myers was built in 1951. In the mid-2000s the city spent $297,000 on a project to revamp the the 850-foot pier.

Workers installed new decking made of synthetic materials and included a fish-cleaning station, new railing and bulletproof lighting.

The city had been trying to save the pier on the Caloosahatchee River, which was constructed in 1951, from the drug dealing and prostitution that had plagued the area for years.

The pier had been closed at night after a 1990 homicide and re-opened to night fishermen in 1995 under 24-hour police surveillance, according to The News-Press archives.

Jim LaConte, a property manager in Fort Myers, had biked to the pier Sunday night to watch a storm roll in.

“I heard about the body,” he said. “During the day here it’s beautiful, it’s awesome. Everyone is friendly.”

He said people come to the pier to fish for tarpon, redfish, mullet and catfish “like you wouldn’t believe.”

However, he said, at night the drugs do come out.

“There is a lot of drug activity. I have told the police,” he said.

Connect with this reporter: MichaelBraunNP (Facebook) @MichaelBraunNP (Twitter)

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