Family pleas for tips in 2007 murder - FOX 13 News

Family pleas for tips in 2007 murder

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ST. PETERSBURG (FOX 13) -

It's the six year anniversary of Leon Dash's homicide, and his killer hasn't been caught. Dash's family and Clearwater police are pleading for someone to come forward with information. Crimestoppers is offering a reward of up to $1,000.

"He was just trying to talk teenagers down from a situation that was getting out of hand," said Dash's sister Ladwayna Dash Gilghrest.

Dash was working security at the Atrium Martini Bar downtown July 30, 2007. It was teen night. After the club closed, hundreds of people spilled outside and an altercation started. Dash tried to break it up. He was attacked and died from what police only describe as blunt force trauma.

Detectives have a person of interest, but they won't say who. Now, they need solid tips.

"It's somewhat of a 'no snitch' mentality," said Detective Michael Hasty. "That prohibits investigations that would've otherwise been closed much sooner."

Dash's other sister Elaine Dash Wade is urging anyone who may know anything about her brother's death to put themselves in the family's shoes.

"What if this was your brother? What if this was your mom? What if this was your sister, cousin?" she said.

Dash was 48, a father of two, and expecting a granddaughter. His death is especially hard on his father, Leon Dash, Sr.

"We do pray. That's what has gotten us through it as a family," said Dash Gilghrest. "And my dad needs closure."

This family has had enough heartbreak already. Leon's Dash's mother Margaret Dash disappeared in 1974. A banner of unsolved crimes in Clearwater picturing both Leon and Margaret Dash hangs at the police department. After 39 years, she still hasn't been found.

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