Arrest made in connection with 2012 rooftop killing

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DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. —

A man was arrested Tuesday in connection with a 2012 rooftop killing in Daytona Beach, authorities said.

Daytona Beach police said they picked up Jeremy Maruska, 21, at about 5:30 a.m. Tuesday at a home on Fairview Avenue.

On Nov. 3, 2012, the body of 30-year-old transient Dylan Thomas Tharp was found naked on the roof of the Peabody Auditorium in Daytona Beach, authorities said.

According to authorities, Tharp died of multiple blunt force trauma to the head. Police Chief Mike Chitwood said Tharp was killed at the scene.

"It was a very savage, savage beating, they just beat this Dylan Tharp. It was unbelievable the injuries they inflicted on him," Chitwood said.

The arrest is a relief for the victim's father, investigators said.

Detectives have been in contact with the man's father, who's terminally ill, Chitwood said.

"He doesn't have much time on the face of this earth. He said, 'Please before I leave, give me some closure and tell me why this was done to my son,'" Chitwood said.

Investigators said Tharp was lured up to the rooftop to party and drink beer but Maruska and at least one other person allegedly turned on Tharp, brutally beating him and leaving him to die.

Police said they were told the killers believed Tharp was a police informant.

"You're looking at two scumbags, who snuffed out a person's life because they perceived he was a snitch because he asked too many questions," Chitwood said.

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