Lyft Driver Who Went Missing in Florida Has Been Found Dead, Daughter Says

Gary Levin, 74, had not been heard from since the afternoon of Jan. 30 when he was driving Lyft customers in the Palm Beach Garden area of Florida

Gary Levin
Gary Levin. Photo: Facebook

Update: In a Tuesday Facebook post, Gary Levin's daughter, Lindsay DiBetta, confirmed that Levin has died. A cause of death has not been released.

The family of a missing Lyft driver is awaiting answers after authorities in Florida announced the discovery of human remains near where the 74-year-old was last seen.

Gary Levin's family is awaiting confirmation that those remains are his, and they are asking for privacy in the meantime.

"The sadness and the frustration in this is all so much for my family and I," his daughter, Lindsay DiBetta, wrote on Facebook. "Since this case is being looked at by so many people at this point I have to have faith in our legal system and the people working on it."

"I have to believe they are doing everything possible to bring home a father, grandfather, brother, friend, uncle and cousin to his loved ones," she said in the post.

The grim discovery was made on Feb. 4, when investigators with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement found "human remains of an adult male," in Okeechobee County, just five days after his daughter said his phone last pinged in the area.

The remains have yet to be positively identified as of Feb. 7 because officials are awaiting autopsy results, according to a press release from the Okeechobee County Sheriff's Office.

According to the rideshare driver's daughter, Levin had not been heard from since the afternoon of Jan. 30 when he was driving Lyft customers in the Palm Beach Garden area. His phone was turned off, which DiBetta said was unusual for him.

According to the Associated Press, officials said his red 2022 Kia Stinger was spotted in Miami that day, then a rural area in Okeechobee County and later in north Florida.

DiBetta said in a Feb. 2 update that her father's car was discovered in North Carolina, but there was no sign of him.

The AP reported that Matthew Scott Flores, 35, was driving the vehicle. He was being sought in connection with an unrelated murder in Hardee County, Fla., according to a press release from the DeSoto County Sheriff's Office.

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Authorities in North Carolina said they arrested Flores after a high-speed chase through multiple counties. He was then taken to a local hospital because investigators suspected he was under the influence of drugs.

Flores was later released from the hospital and taken to the Rutherford County Detention Center, the sheriff's office said. He is being held without bond for a parole violation and $615,000 secured bond for the remaining charges in North Carolina.

Matthew Scott Flores, Murder Suspect Arrested After Multi County Pursuit
Matthew Scott Florres. Rutherford County Sheriff’s Office, N.C./Facebook

Officials are still looking into how Flores got in contact with Levin's vehicle.

Flores is charged with second-degree murder and firearm offenses in connection with the Jan. 24 homicide case in Florida, according to authorities.

It is not immediately clear if he has entered a plea to the charges in both states or retained an attorney to speak on his behalf.

Meanwhile, in a statement obtained by 6abc, Lyft said the company is working with law enforcement.

"Our thoughts are with Mr. Levin's family and loved ones during this deeply concerning time," the statement reads. "We've been in touch with his family to offer our support, as well as with law enforcement to assist with their investigation."

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