Detective: Surveillance videos key in Punta Gorda 7-11 murder investigation

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PUNTA GORDA, Fla. Seven surveillance videos were key in identifying Michael Russo as a suspect in the 2015 killing of a 7-Eleven employee, a Punta Gorda Police Department detective told jurors on Friday.

Investigators reviewed videos from inside the store to find someone who may have had problems with other employees after determining that Kyle Farishian had no enemies, Lt. Terry Cochran said.

Detectives noticed similarities between how Russo and the murder suspect walked out of the store, Cochran said. Authorities eliminated robbery as a motive because nothing was taken other than the lighter used to set the business on fire, Cochran said.

Russo was banned from the store for arguing with another employee.

Cochran admitted during cross-examination that it was impossible to determine the exact height or gender of the suspect, who was covered from head to toe.

Russo is charged with second-degree murder and first-degree arson in the death of Farishian, 18, whose body was found following a fire at the 7-Eleven at Bal Harbor Boulevard and Aqui Esta Drive in November 2015.

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