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Child discovers body on Great Smokey Ave.; friend IDs as man reported missing

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BATON ROUGE - Police have arrested a man suspected of murdering an insurance agent and dumping the body in his backyard after a robbery.

According to the Baton Rouge Police Department, 34-year-old Daryel Johnson was arrested and charged with the death Thursday. Police believe Johnson fatally shot 53-year-old Dale Sands after a robbery.

Police say Sands was found dead in Johnson's backyard in the 9000 block of Great Smokey Avenue around 3 p.m. Aug. 23.

A witness told WBRZ that a child discovered the body and told family members that there was a "sleeping" man outside. The witness said he then went outside and found the body in a backyard. 

The body was later identified as that of Dale Sands, who was reported missing by the East Baton Rouge Sheriff's Office earlier that same afternoon. The witness reported that the victim was wearing a blue Allstate polo shirt, much like the the work polo Sands was wearing when he was last seen the day before.

Sands' vehicle was found on Aug. 24 by police. Inside the cab of the truck, police found Johnson's finger prints on a cigar wrapper. Records show Johnson's address was the same place that Sands' body was discovered. 

Witnesses say the overheard Johnson telling someone he had "meant to move the body before anyone found it." 

He was found and arrested on Aug. 31. 

Johnson will be booked into the East Baton Rouge Parish Prison for first-degree murder, armed robbery, intimidating a witness and unauthorized use of a motor vehicle.

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