A teenager killed his grandmother in a bloody struggle inside her home at a nudist community in Lutz, Florida 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 from the home – Paradise Lakes Condominium Association nudist community in Lutz – into his grandmother’s minivan early Monday, police said.
Machetto drove around with his grandmother’s body in the back of the Honda Odyssey and when deputies tried to pull him over, he refused, police said.
He eventually drove back to the Paradise Lakes – a clothing-optional condominium community and adjacent resort – 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.
Deputies described Machetto as expressionless and stoic following his arrest.
However he then pulled a huge smile when it came time for his booking photo.
In a second photo, taken moments later, he appears to be on the verge of tears.
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.
Hall said Machetto suffered a brain injury as a result and was ‘never the same’ afterwards.
Machetto’s emotional maturity was that of a 13-year-old.
Hall said Machetto was spastic and child-like.
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.
Schmitt had taken Machetto in to live with her several weeks ago after his mother, Sheryl, ‘had done all she could’.
Records show he was arrested twice earlier this year.
In March he was charged with obstructing police and resisting arrest.
In May he was arrested for retail theft.