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Doctor's body found in Tarpon Springs mansion | News

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Doctor's body found in Tarpon Springs mansion

Update: Tarpon Springs Police have identified the body found inside a mansion as its homeowner, 74-year-old Dr. Steven Schwartz. Police would not say a cause of death, other than to say Schwartz suffered from "upper body trauma."

Detectives say it does not appear to be a random act, and that anyone with information concerning this case is asked to call Tarpon Springs Police at 727-938-2849.

Click here to read the letter Tarpon Springs PD sent to resident regarding this incident.

Earlier Report:

Tarpon Springs, FL - Officers who went into a $1.6 million waterfront mansion looking for a burglar instead found a man's body inside.

Investigators are still gathered outside the huge home on Belcher Drive right now. Neighbors say the woman who lives here, Becky Schwartz, told them she came home at around 9 last night and found her bedroom closet ransacked.

Police say the family had dealt with break-ins and burglaries in the past, so she backed out of the house and called police.

Officers and a dog came out to search the 7,400 square feet inside. They were looking for a burglar, but instead they found a man dead inside the house near the garage.


Police say it looks like someone killed him, but they won't yet say whether the victim is someone who lives in the home or someone from the outside. Property records and neighbors say Becky lives with her husband, Dr. Steven Schwartz.

Dr. Jose Torres, a colleague and friend of Dr. Schwartz for 27 years, came to the scene and talked with police Thursday morning. He told me the detectives confirmed to him the worst: that Dr. Schwartz is dead.

I asked Tarpon Springs Police spokesman Sgt. Ed Miller about whether Dr. Schwartz is the victim. Miller said police are waiting on autopsy results before they'll share anything publicly about the man's identity and how he died.

A couple who told me they were relatives of the Schwartz family came to the house early Thursday morning. They then left after a short talk with police and told me they learned nothing new.

At a Thursday morning press conference, Sgt. Miller said the body found inside appears to be a man in his mid-50's.

That doesn't match the age of Dr. Schwartz, who is in his 70's. However, Torres tells 10 News that the doctor looked young, so a victim description of a man in his mid-50's could still match.


Among the features of the high-end home: a waterfront tennis court, a boat dock, a movie theater room, and a 2,000 square foot porch. Neighbors also told me the house is "loaded" with security cameras that could offer clues to investigators.

I learned from talking with Tarpon Springs police that they do not believe the general public is in danger and there is no need for people in this neighborhood along the Anclote River to be on alert.

We're going to keep asking for answers -- police say they expect to share more details once the Pinellas County Medical Examiner's Office determines the cause of death and confirms the man's identity.


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