Physical therapist who ‘murdered his wife and three kids’ as their Disney town home has part of his ‘illegally obtained’ confession tossed by judge because he wasn’t read his Miranda rights and was high on Benadryl
Anthony Todt, 45, is charged with killing his wife, three young children and their family dog in January 2020
Todt’s wife and children had been suffocated, stabbed and left to rot for two weeks before being found by police
Police say he confessed to the killings when he was arrested at the family’s home on January 13, 2020, with the decomposing bodies
Judge Keith Carsten, of Florida, has ruled out parts of Todt’s initial confession to investigators because he had not been read his Miranda rights
Todt was also ‘suicidal’ and had diminished capacity because he was under the influence of a Benadryl overdose, according to a motion
In phone calls made and letters sent from jail, Todt claims that his wife Megan was responsible for murdering their children before committing suicide
Police are required by law to read the constitutional rights of people who are in their custody prior to questioning
Florida judge Keith Carsten has agreed to partially omit the confession of a physical therapist accused of murdering his wife and three children in 2020 at their home in a Disney town ahead of his trial because he hadn’t been read his Miranda rights and was high on Benadryl.
Anthony Todt, 45, is charged with four counts of first-degree murder and one count of animal cruelty in the fatal stabbings of his wife, Megan, 42, and their kids Alek, 13; Tyler, 11, and Zoe, 4. Their dog Breezy was also killed at the family’s home in Celebration, Florida, in January 2020.
Todt, who has pleaded not guilty, spoke to detectives after he was arrested at the hospital in January 2020. But he wasn’t properly informed of his Miranda rights before the interview, according to a motion filed on August 31, 2021, by Assistant Public Defender Peter Schmer.
It’s unclear what part of his confession will be tossed out.
When they were found on January 13, 2020, Todt’s wife and kids had been wrapped in blanket and drugged with Benadryl. They had also been suffocated, stabbed and left to rot for two weeks. However,
Todt, 45, the prime suspect in the murders of his wife, daughter and two boys as well as the family dog, was not read his Miranda rights when he initially confessed to the killings upon his arrest in January 2020.
To compound the prosecution dilemma, Todt reportedly has told a relative in a jailhouse phone call in March that his wife was responsible for her own death and she had killed their three children and the family dog.
Police are required by law to read the constitutional rights of people who are in their custody prior to questioning, a rule had established under the 1966 U.S. Supreme Court case ‘Miranda v. Arizona.’
If officers fail to do so, then prosecutors can’t use any information the suspect says as evidence at trial.
During his first interview with police, Todt initially confessed. to the quadruple-homicide.
It took a further two rounds of interrogation before officers realized that they hadn’t informed the suspect of his rights, according to the motion, before he confessed to slaughtering his family.
Todt was also ‘suicidal’ and had diminished capacity because he was under the influence of a Benadryl overdose, the Orlando Sentinel reported.
While being interviewed by officers, Todt told detectives that his ‘head’s spinning a little’ and said ‘I’m foggy, I’m in a fog right now,’ the motion said.
Schmer said the combination of factors led to an invalid waiver of Todt’s rights. The lawyer further argued that detectives may have been ‘tempted to cut corners’ to obtain a confession in their rush to solve the high profile murder ‘with no available concrete evidence.’
Before going on an alleged killing spree, Todt had been working in Connecticut and spent weekends in Florida with his family.
At the time they discovered the murder, federal authorities and Osceola County Sheriff’s deputies had gone to the family’s home to arrest Todt on insurance fraud charges related to his physical therapy business.
Since his jail confinement, Todt has blamed his wife for the slayings in a letter to his father and in a jailhouse phone conversation with his sister, claiming that it was Megan who killed their children and then herself after prior unsuccessful attempts, and that he could not stop her because he was not in the home at the time
‘There were multiple attempts, just so you know, multiple attempts in the last … over a time frame, there’s been attempts,’ Todt told his sister Chrissy Caplet in the March call.
‘Which is why this time I was stuck down here trying to handle things.’
Todt also told Caplet that he had trouble sleeping recently ‘because I’m kind of upset emotionally … Meg and the kids were everything to me, you know? I’m still madly in love with her. I’m still madly in love with the kids.’
Caplet, who lives in Connecticut but was in Florida at the time of the call after assuming power of attorney over her older brother, asks Todt if he can remember speaking to her in December 2019, according to additional recordings obtained by the The Day.
He said that he did not remember speaking to his family in Connecticut at that time.
Authorities believe Todt killed his family some time after New Year’s Day before remaining in the home with their bodies until their discovery two weeks later.
Todt suggested to Caplet that his wife had prohibited him from speaking to his extended family there.
In the April call, they also spoke about his health issues, with Todt insinuating that his wife would force him to avoid traditional medicine for his problems.
He told Caplet about one day in October or August of 2019 when Megan had allegedly taken their two sons to get groceries and he passed out while watching their daughter.
‘I looked at (Megan) like, “Can I go to the doctor now? We’re trying all these things here, I need to find out what’s going on.”‘ He claimed he passed out through a combination of his blood sugar, his thyroid, hypertension and possibly low testosterone.
Anthony Todt says he ‘doesn’t remember anything’ from family murder.
This is not the only time Todt has made claims that his wife was guilty of the killings.
In a June 19 letter to his father Robert Todt obtained by the Orlando Sentinel, he wrote that Megan had drugged the children and then stabbed and suffocated them.
Todt wrote that his wife then drank a bottle of Benadryl and stabbed herself in the abdomen.
‘Long story short, she gave them the Benadryl/Tylenol PM pie, separated them, woke up at 11:30 [p.m.], stabbed and then suffocated each one,’ he wrote in the 27-page letter.
‘At the news of this I ran to the bathroom and puked – I was weak.’
He also claimed that he had wished to hold a press conference but that his lawyers had advised against it.
Todt denied any wrongdoing in his letter and accused the Sheriff’s Office of wanting ‘to score a big win’ with his arrest.
He said he is ‘10000% INNOCENT of all these preposterous charges,’ and wants to ‘correct all inaccuracies’ made by ‘the creative writing machine,’ in a reference to news organizations.
Todt’s trial is set to take place at the Osceola County Courthouse in a little over two weeks, on April 14.