Sunday, March 22, 2015

Dad in custody fight tried to strangle 7-year-old daughter, then committed suicide (Port St. Lucie, Florida)

A close call here--we could have had another addition to the Killer Dad and Custody list for the State of Florida. Fortunately, Mom doesn't need to worry about the safety of her children anymore....
Dad is identified as ARMANDO LAWRENCE BOTTA.

Port St. Lucie police: Man attacks daughter, kills himself 

9:17 p.m. Thursday, March 19, 2015

PORT ST. LUCIE — A Port St. Lucie man took his own life Wednesday night after he first tried to strangle his 7-year-old daughter, city police said.

Police found Armando Lawrence Botta dead in his home in the Newport Isles community, south of Gatlin Boulevard and east of Interstate 95, from an apparent self-inflicted stab wound.

Police are investigating the incident as a suicide and an attempted murder, authorities said Thursday. Officers were called shortly before 9 p.m. Wednesday to a Southwest Newport Isles home. According to a police report released Thursday night, Botta was found dead on the living room floor in front of the sofa.

A kitchen knife was lodged just between his chin and several zip ties and a USB cable were tightened around his neck, indicating an attempt at self-asphyxiation, the report said.

The officers found a 7-year-old girl who had injuries that were consistent with an attempt at strangulation, the report said. The girl told officers her father was making her a necklace and used a string to measure her neck. The girl said her father pulled the string too tightly, causing her pain.

The girl had heavy bruising on her neck and discoloration in her eyes, nose and mouth. It was not clear if she was conscious when Botta committed suicide, police said.

Police found a suicide note addressed to Botta’s estranged wife. After returning to the home, Botta’s wife told police she and Botta were in the process of separating. His wife said Botta had a history of medical issues, but had never exhibited violent behavior toward her or the children in the past.

The woman said she left Wednesday night to pick up two children from a church where the children also attend school. She received a call from the 7-year-old girl and called 911. The woman hurriedly retrieved the other children before returning home, police said. She told police she and Botta had recently argued about child-custody arrangements once their separation became final.