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Police release more details in FSU law professor's slaying

By Javier de Diego, CNN
updated 11:27 AM EDT, Sat July 26, 2014
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Daniel Markel was found fatally wounded in his home's garage
  • There were no signs of robbery or burglary
  • White or silver car believed to be near the scene
  • Professor was published in Yale Law Review, Slate, others

Tallahassee, Florida (CNN) -- For the past week, the mystery surrounding the killing of a nationally renowned law professor has baffled family and friends from Florida to Canada.

Florida State University Professor Daniel Markel was shot in the head at his home on July 18 and died a day later at a local hospital.

On Friday, a day after Markel was laid to rest in Toronto, a few new details emerged in a heavily redacted police report.

The report shows Markel, 41, was shot in the garage of his home, some time between 10:45 a.m. and 11:02 a.m. The keys were inside Markel's car, with the doors unlocked.

The report also states there was no sign of forced entry, which Tallahassee police spokesman David Northway tells CNN could mean Markel knew the shooter. The report does not state whether the garage door was open.

Police on Wednesday released via social media a picture of a silver car they term a "vehicle of interest." Police on Facebook cautioned it may have been a resident, passerby or delivery driver.

A neighbor told police a white or silver vehicle left the home, describing it as a Toyota Prius, or a Prius "type" of vehicle.

Northway told CNN investigators used a nearby business' surveillance camera to capture an image of what appears to be a Prius.

Police say there were no signs of a robbery and have yet to disclose a possible motive. They have been following up on more than 50 leads and offered a $3,000 reward for information leading to an arrest.

In a press release Friday, Tallahassee Police Chief Michael J. DeLeo said, "Our investigators are using all resources available to them and are continuing to explore all of the tips that we have received."

Police have been in contact with Markel's former wife, Wendi Adelson, also an FSU law professor, said her attorney, Jimmy Judkins.

She is "scared to death" that the killer may be targeting her entire family, said Allen Grossman, a close family friend, who has known the couple for several years. The couple have two young sons.

Judkins earlier this week told CNN his client has no idea why this happened.

Markel began working at FSU in 2005 after receiving his bachelor's at Harvard College, a master's from the University of Cambridge and a law degree from Harvard. During his FSU tenure, the Toronto native taught several classes and wrote extensively about criminal law, including articles published in the Yale Law Review, among others.

Markel also founded PrawfsBlawg, a blog focused on law and life, and his writing appeared in publications such as The New York Times, Slate, The Jerusalem Post and The Atlantic Monthly. On PrawfsBlawg, 10 fellow law professors posted about the respect they had for Markel and the mutual love he shared with his friends and family.

"His boundless energy was at the center of this community; it made it run, it gave it life. We are stunned and bereaved by his loss, and our thoughts go to his two little boys, who were precious to him, and to his family."

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