Warrant issued for attempted carjacking suspect as Clay deputies continue searching for him

The suspect in an attempted carjacking is still at large and Clay County Sheriff Michelle Cook said he’s believed to have left the county.

Cook said around 9 a.m. Thursday, the Clay County Sheriff’s Office got a hit on one of its license plate readers on a stolen vehicle located near Blanding Boulevard and Baxley Road.


Deputies responded to that area and the vehicle drove away.

Cook said that shortly after, CCSO started getting calls about a vehicle ramming and breaking the gate of the Orange Park Country Club.

CCSO then started getting calls from residents of Orange Park Country Club about an attempted carjacking and an abandoned vehicle with the door open.

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Deputies set up a perimeter to search for the suspect and the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office and the Florida Highway Patrol responded to assist in the search.

The four schools that were put on Code Yellow lockdowns are:

  • Lakeside Junior/Middle School

  • Lakeside Elementary School

  • Orange Park High School

  • St. Johns Country Day School

CCSO released a photo of the suspect on its Facebook page:

🚨🚨UPDATE 10/27/23: The investigation is still ongoing, and we are actively searching for Tony Smith Jr. A warrant has...

Posted by Clay County Sheriff's Office, Florida on Thursday, October 26, 2023

Tony Smith Jr., 35, is described as 5′9″, of thin build, and was last seen wearing a dark long-sleeve shirt and gray sweatpants in the area of Blanding Boulevard and Kettering Way. Cook said Smith has since changed clothes.

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A warrant for Smith has been issued on the following charges, CCSO said Friday:

  • Flee/Elude Police: Aggravated fleeing w/injury or damage

  • Aggravated Assault: Aggravated assault on specified personnel

  • Burglary: Burglary occupied conveyance unarmed

  • Vehicle Theft: Grand theft of motor vehicle attempted

Cook said if anyone has any information on Smith’s whereabouts, call CCSO at 904-264-6512 or send a tip through the Safer Watch app.

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