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"Sweet" Makayla Sitton (Photos): Paul Michael Merhige Still on Run in Thanksgiving Massacre

(AP Photo/ Jim Sitton via WPTV)
Photo: Makayla Sitton.

JUPITER, Fla. (CBS/AP) "God packed a lot of sweetness into that little body," heartbroken father Jim Sitton said of his murdered 6-year-old daughter Makayla Sitton. "She's just our life. I don't know how we are ever going to recover."

PICTURES: Thanksgiving Massacre Takes "Sweet" Makayla

While the Sitton family tries to make sense of a Thanksgiving massacre that left four people dead including the alleged shooter's pregnant sister, her twin sister, his 79-year-old aunt and his cousin little Makayla, police are now looking in two states for Paul Michael Merhige, the man they believe perpetrated this violence.

(AP Photo/ Jim Sitton via WPTV)
Photo: Makayla Sitton.

PICTURES: Thanksgiving Massacre Takes "Sweet" Makayla

Florida police have alerted Michigan authorities to be on the lookout for Merhige. The 35-year-old suspect is believed to be driving a royal blue 2007 Toyota Camry with a rear spoiler and Florida license plate.

There had been "ongoing resentment" in the family, according to investigators, but they weren't sure what specifically prompted Thursday's killings.

(AP Photo/Jupiter Police Dept.)
Photo: Paul Michael Merhige.

PICTURES: Thanksgiving Massacre Takes "Sweet" Makayla

Police said Merhige briefly left the family gathering before returning to the home where 17 relatives had come together in Jupiter, a small beach town about 90 miles north of Miami. The town is known as a home to celebrities including Michael Jordan and Burt Reynolds.

Merhige sought assistance from a physician in the Detroit area in the past year, Jupiter Police Sgt. Scott Pascarella said, but he was unsure why he needed the doctor.

(CBS)
Photo: Makayla Sitton.

PICTURES: Thanksgiving Massacre Takes "Sweet" Makayla

Pascarella also said that although this may be a reason for the suspect to head to Michigan, there was no specific information that has led investigators to believe Merhige was there.

Pascarella said police first received a 911 call from a Jupiter neighbor Thursday night, then another from someone inside the home. The home, in a well-kept new subdivision with brick-paved driveways, is owned by local TV videojournalist Jim Sitton and his wife, Muriel.

Sitton's 6-year-old daughter Makayla had gone to bed before the rampage, police said.

Messages left a phone number listed for Sitton and his wife were not returned Saturday. He told The Palm Beach Post on Saturday that he saw no "red flags" when the two were sitting near each other during Thanksgiving.

Sitton also previously told local media said his daughter was supposed to perform in a holiday production of "The Nutcracker." The Florida Classical Ballet Theatre had two shows Friday.

"Makayla was part of our family, and as one of the youngest dancers, she was to be one of Mother Ginger's Children," artistic director Colleen Smith said. "She was a beautiful, dear girl. She was a beam."

The other victims were Merhige's twin sisters, Carla Merhige and Lisa Knight, and an aunt, Raymonde Joseph. Merhige's brother-in-law Patrick Knight was in critical but stable condition at a local hospital. Another man, Clifford Gebara, 52, was grazed by a bullet.

Carla Merhige was a real estate agent in Miami.

"She was a wonderful agent," said Joanna Sherman, a manager at Coldwell Banker Residential real estate. "She was very active in the community and in charities. She was just a genuine, beautiful individual. She always had a smile for everybody."

Neighbors in the Palm Beach County community were shocked as police processed the home.

"Our kids walk the streets by themselves," said Nicole Kemp, 67, who did not know any of the victims. "I thought it was the safest place to live. I guess it doesn't matter, if there's a maniac here."

MEDIA
PICTURES: Four Dead in Thanksgiving Massacre

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