CLEARWATER – Daniel P. Welch, 37, 2347 Moore Haven Drive E., Clearwater, was arrested Jan. 18 in the 2004 murder of a Safety Harbor woman.
Welch was charged with the murder of Niccole V. Halpin on Jan. 9, 2004. Pinellas County sheriff’s deputies said Welch had previously dated Halpin and was a suspect during the initial investigation.
Halpin, who was 32 at the time, was beaten to death after arriving home to find a man in her home. With two young sons in the home, Halpin called 911 as well as her boyfriend as she was being chased through her home, sheriff’s reports said.
Detectives said Welch has been a suspect in the murder since early in the investigation and recent developments in the case led to his indictment Jan. 18 on two counts of first-degree murder. He was arrested in the state prison in Lake Butler, where he is serving a three-year term.
State records show he was convicted in Pinellas County in November on felony charges of trafficking and heroin and criminal conspiracy, unrelated to the murder.