Officials in Florida are seeking the death penalty for a Colchester physical therapist who is accused of slaying his wife, their three children and the family dog in the home they rented in Celebration, Florida, near Orlando, according to WESH, an NBC affiliate in Florida.
According to WESH, State Attorney Aramis Ayala said the grand jury returned an indictment on four counts of capital murder and one count of animal cruelty against 44-year-old Anthony Todt.
The bodies of 42-year-old Megan Todt and the couple’s three children, Aleksander, 13, Tyler, 11, Zoe, 4; and their dog, Breezy, were found in the home on Jan. 13, when officers went to assist in serving a warrant connected to an investigation in Connecticut, according to the Osceola County Sheriff's Office.
They said Anthony Todt admitted to killing his wife, Megan, their three children, and their dog.
According to the arrest warrant for Anthony Todt, when officers found him in the home he told them his wife was upstairs sleeping. When they did not receive a response, officers searched the home and found “four obviously deceased human bodies” in a bedroom. The family dog, Breezy, was also found dead.
According to the autopsy reports, Megan had two stab wounds and the boys each had one. Four-year-old Zoe had no obvious injuries, according to the reports. All the bodies were starting to decompose.
In the arrest warrant, officers noted that during their search of the home “Anthony could barely stand and appeared to be shaking.” He was taken to the hospital for evaluation and told paramedics he took “an unknown amount of Benadryl in an attempt to commit suicide.”
Todt has pleaded not guilty. He is due to be arraigned on March 12, according to online court records.
Colchester's first selectman said their community is focused on supporting each other through this tragedy.
"Our community is focused in (sic) healing and remembering a mother and her three children. The vast majority of the community would like to put this behind us but never forget the wonderful lives that have been lost. Knowing this news will continue to come out over the months to follow challenges us. I am confident we will continue to support each other and as we accept we will never make sense if this tragedy," Mary Bylone wrote in a statement.
Just before Christmas, an eviction notice was filed in a Florida court for the same address as the death investigation. The documents list Megan and Anthony Todt as living in the home at the time.
According to the documents, the Todts signed a one-year lease in May 2019 but missed a December payment of more than $4,000. The lease agreement also lists an email for Anthony Todt connected to a physical therapy practice he runs in Colchester, Family Physical Therapy.
Dec. 29: Law Enforcement Is Contacted
On Dec. 29, one of Anthony Todt's family members contacted law enforcement in Florida to check on the family’s well-being. She said she'd been told they all had the flu and had not heard from then in two days.
Deputies did respond that day but couldn't reach anyone in the home or see anything suspicious.
Authorities noted that the family was known to travel, so it wouldn't be uncommon for them to be away.
Anthony worked as a physical therapist, Monday through Friday, in Connecticut and traveled to Florida on weekends to be with his family, who lived there for a few years, according to the sheriff's office.
State records say Anthony Todt’s license to practice physical therapy lapsed in September. Megan Todt’s license was still active.
Jan. 9: Federal Agents Contact Authorities in Florida
On Jan. 9, federal agents contacted the Osceola County Sheriff's Office about an investigation that authorities in Connecticut were conducting involving Anthony Todt. Deputies made several attempts to contact him and his family over the weekend, but they weren't able to reach anyone. Then they went back Monday.
According to Connecticut’s Office of the Attorney General, there is an open False Claims Act investigation into Anthony Todt and his business, Performance Edge Sports, which also operates under the name Family Physical Therapy.
Jan. 13: Todt Family Found Dead
Deputies from the Osceola County Sheriff's Office went to the family's home on Monday, Jan. 13 to assist in serving Anthony Todt with a warrant connected to an investigation in Connecticut, according to sheriff's office officials. They detained him and found four bodies. Authorities believe the four victims are Anthony's wife, Megan, and their three children -- 13-year-old Alek, an 11-year-old Tyler and a 4-year-old Zoe.
After the arrest, deputies took Anthony Todt to the hospital. They said he had taken some allergy pills and they were not sure how much he'd taken. He also made comments about possibly harming himself, authorities said. He was released from the hospital on Wednesday.
Todt Relatives Release Statement
Anthony's sister shared a family statement:
“Tony and Megan were devoted loving parents who loved their children and Breezy every day and were so involved in their community. The families of Tony and Megan ask for privacy during this difficult time in our lives as we mourn the loss of our families."