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January 02, 2010 USMS Headquarters Public Affairs (202) 307-9065
U.S. Marshals Capture Alleged Thanksgiving Day Killer

Paul Michael Merhige (Caotured)WASHINGTON The U.S. Marshals Service, along with local law enforcement officers, captured accused homicide suspect Paul Michael Merhige at a motel in the Florida Keys. Merhige was arrested without incident when authorities received a tip after the story was profiled on "America's Most Wanted."

Merhige was added to the “15 Most Wanted” list of fugitives on December 07, 2009 after he was suspected of killing four relatives Thanksgiving Day in Jupiter, FL.  Merhige allegedly opened fire on his family, killing four people, including his twin sisters, one of whom was pregnant, a 79-year-old aunt and a six-year-old cousin, and wounding a brother-in-law and another man. 

Merhige checked into the motel on December 2nd under the name John Baca, and provided a fake address.  The 2007 Toyota Camry that he used to flee the scene was still in his possession, but was hidden at the motel.

The capture brings an end to a month-long manhunt that spanned across the country. "I'm elated that the monster is in the cage," Jim Sitton, the father of the 6-year-old victim Makayla Sitton, told The Palm Beach Post. "We don't have to worry about him killing my wife or coming back for my father-in-law. It doesn't bring my daughter back, but at least this chapter is over."

Merhige is currently being held without bond on four (4) counts of murder.

    Original News Release

The U.S. Marshals Service is the nation’s oldest federal law enforcement agency. For more information on U.S. Marshals 15 Most Wanted fugitives and Major Cases, go to