[UPDATE] A Domestic Dispute Leads to Manhunt in Gadsden County

By: Eyewitness News Email
By: Eyewitness News Email

UPDATE 1-14-2011

Major Shawn Wood says, "This whole thing started over domestic violence, you should take domestic violence very seriously."

The body of 35-year-old Erick Daniels was found just after noon in a wooded area in Gadsden county.
Deputies say a manhunt for Erick Daniels had been underway since early January, after he brutally beat his ex-wife in the face and head with a gun, causing bleeding on her brain.
He had been on the run until authorities say a family member found his body behind an abandoned church.

"We received a call from a family member saying that they thought they had found Erick Daniels out here behind the old Mt. Pleasant church on highway 90," said Wood.

Laura Smith, a childhood friend of Daniels says, what happened was out of character.
"I grew up with Eric and he was a very nice person. I'm sad to hear that something like that happened to him, you know, my heart goes out to the family and I will continue to pray for them and hope that they will get through this, take it one day at a time."

Family members and friends lined the street and looked on as deputies combed the scene.
The body had been transported to the medical examiner for an autopsy. Crime scene investigators are not releasing any details on the condition of his body or if they were able to determine a cause of death .. but Authorities say they are *not* looking for suspects in this case.

UPDATE 1-14-2011

The search is over for a local man charged with brutally attacking his ex-wife. It's been a little more than a week since Police issued a manhunt for 35 year old Erick Daniels, but today the manhunt came to a close when his body was discovered in Mt. Pleasant, Florida.

Gadsden County Sheriff investigators say a family member found his body near an abandoned church just after noon today. Daniels' death comes on the heels of an all out manhunt that's been on for about two weeks.

Authorities say he shot at his ex-wife three times, missed and then beat her in the head and face with a gun, causing bleeding on her brain.
The attack happened in Gretna. Investigators say after the incident, he fled into the woods and they've been searching for him ever since.
Deputies on scene today say do say they are not searching for a suspect in connection with Daniels' death.


[UPDATE] 1-14 2:20PM

The FDLE Crime Lab is now on scene. Twenty cars carrying family members were lined up along the road near the abandoned Old Mt. Pleasant Church.

Pictures of the scene have been added above.

Stay with WCTV for updates


[UPDATE] 1-14 2:00PM

A body, believed to be Erick Daniels, was found near Old Mt. Pleasant Church in Gadsden County., which is abandoned, and was found by a family member, according to Maj. Shawn Wood, Gadsden County Sheriff’s Office.

Eyewitness News has a reporter on the scene. We will bring you details as we get them.


Updated by La'Tasha Givens 1/12 at 6:30 pm

Authorities say Daniels has ties in Jacksonville, Florida and believe he may have gone there.

If you see him, call authorities at 850-856-9460

Updated by La'Tasha Givens 1/5 at 6:30 pm

Law enforcement agents say it is imperative to find Erick Daniels who's charged with brutally beating beating up his ex-wife causing bleeding on her brain. Investigators say this is his most violent attack on record, but it's definitely not his first.

WCTV obtained a portion of Erick Daniels' criminal history and it shows he has been convicted of aggravated assault and battery of three other women starting in 1997. Gretna Police has requested help with the search from federal marshals.

Erick Daniels is considered armed and dangerous and authorities say don't not approach him but, if you see him call the

Gretna Police Department at 850-856-9460

Gretna Public Safety Department Release:

The Gretna Public Safety Department (GPS) is searching for Erick Daniels, 34.
Daniels, is a suspect in the beating of a women during a domestic dispute on January 3rd 2011. According to authorities, the victim was sent to Tallahassee Memorial Hospital with severe head injuries, cuts and abrasions. A Gretna police reports states, that the victim went to Daniel’s residence in Gretna to pick up their child who spent the weekend with Daniels. While placing items in the trunk, the report stated Daniels became aggravated and belligerent for no apparent reason. Daniels then pulled out a gun and began firing. The victim was not hit by any of the bullets, but was struck violently in the face with the gun multiple times. The victim then ran from Daniels who caught her inside the house and struck her a “couple of times,” more. The report states that Daniel’s father interceded and told him to leave. Daniels then left on foot and 911 was called by his father. The victim was taken to Gadsden Community Campus and then to TMH because of the severity of her injuries. A manhunt ensued after authorities were on the scene and Apalachee Correctional Institute’s K-9 Unit was called in to track Daniels. The manhunt was called off later Monday afternoon. Also assisting GPD were the Gadsden County Sheriff’s Office and the Greensboro Police Department. Daniels is described by authorities as a black male, bald head, between 5’ 10", and was wearing a dark hoodie jacket and dark pants at the time of the incident. Daniels was last seen on Brown Street in Gretna. GPS Chief Brian Bess warned that Daniels is considered armed and dangerous. He is being sought in reference to the above crime and is a convicted felon, Bess added. Anyone with information is asked to call GPD at 850-856-9460 and to not approach Daniels.


The Gretna Police Department along with other agencies are looking for Erick Daniels, who they say beat his girlfriend earlier this morning. Authorities say they received a call just before 9AM this morning. They've been searching for Daniels for the past two and a half hours. Deputies tell us the victim has been sent to TMH with severe head injured and bleeding on the brain.

Erick Daniels is described by authorities as a black male, bald head, between 5' 7" and 5' 8", wearing dark hoodie jacket and dark pants. Daniels was last seen on Brown Street in Gretna. He his considered armed and dangerous.

If you see him, police say do not approach him, but call authorities at 850-856-9460

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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by to sammy Location: g retna on Feb 2, 2011 at 08:02 PM
    god bless you still crying for erick and the victim
  • by .. Location: .. on Jan 28, 2011 at 06:21 AM
    TO:Posted by: to sammy Location: gretna on Jan 27, 2011 at 10:56 PM Do you need to go back and read the article. The title alone sums up the crime...DOMESTIC ABUSE is a crime! He intended to shoot his ex wife but then resulted in beating her in the face! If you find this acceptable then YOU NEED THERAPY! No doubt Erick is missed by others but if you think he was an innocent bystander in his life you are SADLY MISTAKEN! This wasn't the first time he abused her!
  • by to sammy Location: gretna on Jan 27, 2011 at 07:56 PM
    what did he do to you sammy.
  • by sammy Location: Grenta on Jan 27, 2011 at 12:26 PM
    Wow! I see Erick the dirt bag still has idiots crying for him. Too bad you dumb people can't see how low a dirt bag Erick was.
  • by .. Location: .. on Jan 25, 2011 at 10:27 AM
    To Sorry ex wife: Obviously you didn't know here. She wasn't a bad person. She is an amazing woman! She would never hurt Erick... She was the victim. I seriously doubt she asked him to do what he did! Sadly now he is gone, for WHAT! What made him do what he did? Why? We will never know...
  • by to slim u no me on Jan 24, 2011 at 03:23 PM
    slim i agree let erick rest in peace he's gone nobody perfect we all got to leave earth one day. we all need to pray and ask the lord to forgive our sins.
  • by SLIM on Jan 24, 2011 at 01:13 PM
    It has been a tragic lost but for the people who are on here posting these comments, leave it alone no one knew what was going through his mind neither episode so you can't judge him. Let the man rest, and let his family and kids live on without the drama and negative things over their heads.
  • by Get a life Location: Gretna on Jan 22, 2011 at 09:15 AM
    Everybody needs to get a life of there own and stop worrying about who have to suffer for what they do.Simply because no one is perfect and show some respect for everuone that was invovled in this situation and pray to god that you dont have to go through it or neither one of your love ones.Even though alot of you have so many bad things to say he was loved and loved by many and will be missed by many so it really dont matter what bad things that people have to say for all the good things he did in life out weigh all of the bad.So therefore I pray for everyone that are so quick to judge that you get your life in order when it's your time to leave here there is no time to waste get it together people.
  • by near u 2 Location: here on Jan 21, 2011 at 09:24 PM
    to near u . you need to close your mouth i heard some pretty ugly stuff about you also. i know who you are . do you know me
  • by sorry ex wife Location: near u on Jan 21, 2011 at 02:41 PM
    why are you ppl posting bad stuff about erick there are two sides to a story i'm not taking no sides i heard some bad stuff about his ex wife. for what i heard if it's true i think erick was the victim.
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