Suspect indicted in Manatee motel murder

Steven Joseph Cozens
Steven Joseph Cozens(Manatee County Sheriff's Office)
Published: Jan. 18, 2023 at 11:46 AM EST
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MANATEE COUNTY, Fla. (WWSB) - A man suspected of killing his girlfriend in a Manatee County motel room in August has been indicted for her murder.

Steven Joseph Cozens was indicted for first-degree murder Wednesday, the state attorney’s office said.

Prosecutors say on Aug. 28, while living temporarily at America’s Best Value Inn in Bradenton, Cozens began to argue with his girlfriend.

Cozens pulled a knife and repeatedly stabbed her. After she died, he wrapped her body in a sheet and hid her under the mattress of one of the beds in the room. Her body was found by a housekeeper the next day.

Cozens was arrested Aug. 29 and initially charged with second-degree murder.