Worried co-workers led to slain family's discovery, 911 calls show
Grant Amato accused of killing family after fight over online relationship
SEMINOLE COUNTY, Fla. – Co-workers of the 31-year-old man investigators say was killed by his brother last week knew something wasn't right when his phone was turned off and he didn't show up for work at his Orlando hospital job, 911 calls from friends show.
Grant Amato, 29, was arrested Monday morning and is accused of killing his parents, Chad Amato, 59, and Margaret Amato, 61, and his brother, Cody Amato, 31. They were found dead Friday in their home on Sultan Circle in Chuluota after a co-worker reported Cody Amato hadn't shown up for work.
It wasn't like Cody Amato, an anesthesiologist, to not show up for work. In fact, his coworker at Orlando Regional Medical Center told dispatchers he hadn't missed a day in five years.
The same co-worker and others tried calling, texting and messaging Amato on social media Jan. 25 with no luck when he didn't show up for his 5:30 a.m. shift at ORMC.
"He’s always got his phone on and his phone has been turned off and his message box is full," a concerned co-worker said, adding no one had heard from him since about 10 a.m. the night prior.
Soon after, another friend who worked with Amato called 911 for a well-being check, saying she knew his brother, Grant Amato, suffered from depression, could possibly be suicidal and the family had been dealing with some issues.
"His brother does suffer from depression and I know it’s been bad recently," the 911 caller said. "But I’m not assuming the worst but, like, this is just very out of character so I’m worried."
In the three months beforehand, deputies said Grant Amato stole $200,000 from his parents and brother and wired those funds to a woman in Bulgaria with whom he had been communicating since June on Cam Girls, an adult website. After learning of the theft, the suspect's father gave him an ultimatum and Grant Amato went to a rehabilitation center in Fort Lauderdale where he received treatment for internet and sex addiction, investigators said. He checked out Jan. 4, according to the arrest warrant.
A month before the slayings, Grant Amato's parents reported him missing and told deputies he had access to firearms and they were "100 percent convinced he will try to harm himself."
Cody Amato had previously expressed concern that his brother would kill everyone, his girlfriend told investigators.
The second co-worker who called to request a well-being check called back into dispatch later, crying and distressed, after hearing from another co-worker that deputies hadn't been able to make contact with the 31-year-old or his family.
"I am concerned that something has come of harm to my friend," she said. "I know that my friend’s brother struggles with depression and I believe suicidal as well and he mentioned it to me and I’m very worried."
Grant Amato, 29, was arrested Monday on three counts of first-degree premeditated murder.
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