Grandfather murdered on way to work in Clearwater

2:39 AM, Oct 30, 2010   |    comments
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James Michael Siebert
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Tampa, Florida - Five years after the murder of his father, Scott Siebert still wipes away tears.

He would give anything to have his father back. Or, at least know who murdered him.

Scott breaks down as he describes the pain. "You just try and stay strong as hard as it is and you just hope that in your lifetime you will see who did this and justice will be done."

It's been nearly five years since someone brutally beat and murdered James Michael Siebert. The 52-year-old left his apartment at Salley Lane Apartments in Clearwater and was headed to work at the Lowe's on U.S. 19.

It was 3:40 a.m.

Siebert would only make it as far as the parking lot before being attacked.

"He had his lunch, he had his coffee, he was walking out to his truck," according to Clearwater Detective Joseph Ruhlin.

Investigators aren't quite sure what happened, but Siebert "met up with somebody right near his vehicle."

"One witness said that he saw someone swinging what looked like hedge clippers hitting the ground. He thought he was killing a rat or a small animal," said Ruhlin.

Witnesses all agree the man had on dark clothing, dark pants, a dark jacket about waist length and some sort of hat, possibly a ski cap.

Scott just wants to find the person who did this and tore their family apart. "He was a great guy, would give the shirt off his back to anyone," said Scott.

Detective Ruhlin believes this crime seemed personal.

"It did seem like someone who knew him, just for the fact he was just walking out the door and knew his routine and he was beat pretty good about the face and head, and usually that means it's personal," said Ruhlin.

Scott is now working toward his Bachelor's Degree in Criminal Justice.

A result of his father's murder? Yes, in part.

Not only will his father's memory be etched in his memory forever, he's also inked on his neck. Scott proudly displays a tattoo of a cross that says "In Memory of My Father."

As for moving forward, Scott said, "You just try and stay strong as hard as it is and you just hope that in your lifetime you will see who did this and justice will be done."

If you have any information about this case, Clearwater Police and Crime Stoppers want to hear from you! Call 1-800-873-TIPS, or 1-800-873-8477. You may be eligible to recieve a reward. You can also submit tips online by clicking here.

Melanie Michael, 10 News

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