LUTZ, Fla. (AP) — A teenager killed his grandmother in a bloody struggle inside her home at a nudist community and then drove around with her body in a minivan for nearly five hours, authorities said.
Brandon Machetto, 18, had been living with his grandmother, 74-year-old Sylvia Schmitt, for the past several weeks and they apparently fought frequently, said Pasco County sheriff’s spokeswoman Melanie Snow.
A neighbor called authorities after seeing Machetto drag a wrapped bag with feet dangling out into his grandmother’s minivan early Monday, police said.
Machetto drove around with his grandmother’s body in the back and when deputies tried to pull him over, he refused, police said. He eventually drove back to the Paradise Lakes community and was arrested.
Machetto was charged with first-degree murder and is being held in jail without bond. It’s unclear if he has an attorney.
Ronnie Hall, Machetto’s martial arts instructor for seven years, said Machetto nearly died a few years ago when he was attacked by a group of teens who hit him in the back of the head with a rock, the Tampa Bay Times reported. Hall said Machetto suffered a brain injury, and that he was not aggressive.
Machetto and his grandmother apparently fought as she tried to get her grandson to take his medication. Deputies said Machetto had been accused of domestic violence against Schmitt in 2012, but she dropped the charge.
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