• Attorneys want MRI, psychiatric evaluation for Seminole County man accused of killing his family

    By: Jeff Levkulich , James Tutten


    SEMINOLE COUNTY, Fla. - Attorneys for the man accused of killing his parents and brother wants medical testing on his brain, specifically an MRI, as well as a psychiatric evaluation.

    The motion was filed late Thursday afternoon claiming an evaluation is needed for possible defenses in the case of Grant Amato before his trial next month.

    This could be a fourth round of evidence that will be introduced at his trial of considerable note along with interviews conducted with members of the Amato family.


    It's those interviews with family members in which, investigators learned more about Grant Amato and what he was up to before the murders.  

    This is all to lend more credibility to the prosecution’s case that Grant murdered his family in their Chuluota home for money and love with an online call girl.

    While Grant Amato remains behind bars maintaining his innocence, his family members told investigators they are not so sure of that.  

    Amato's grandmother Gloria told investigators during an interview shortly after the murders of Chad, Margaret and Cody Amato that she believed Grant murdered his family.

    Records also show Grant's aunt Donna stated she was beginning to believe he may have planned the murders for monetary gain.

    Prosecutors believe that's exactly what happened, with Grant Amato's desire to be with Silvie, an online call girl, for whom he allegedly stole more than $200,000 from his family to pay for their online encounters. 

    In recent court filings, Amato's defense wants any reference to Silvie and the alleged stolen amount of money thrown out at trial. Amato's attorney claims it "qualifies as inadmissable bad character evidence."

    Both Grant's grandmother and aunt Donna told investigators that Grant stole from them, when he showed up on their door steps in late December to stay with them, after a blowup with his family. 

    Much later, Donna discovered she had fraudulent activity on her credit card during the time Grant stayed with her for the website Grant used to communicate with the Bulgarian woman.

    Chad allowed the line of credit to go through because he did not want Grant to get in trouble for fraud and wished to protect him, reports say.

    Amato's attorney also wants a judge to exclude the fact that Amato was fired from his nursing job prior to the murders as well as any mention of his stay at a rehab facility for porn addiciton. 

    Channel 9 legal analyst Bill Sheaffer said any likelihood thta judge would throw all or any evidence out is remote and that it is an integral part of proving Amato's guilt since it all intertwines. 

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