Prosecution rests in Grant Amato murder trial

Prosecutors rested their case Tuesday afternoon in the trial of a Seminole County man accused of killing his mother, father and brother.

Grant Amato was arrested in January and charged with three counts of murder.  As the state worked to wrap up its case Tuesday, several expert witnesses testified in court.  

Amato broke down when photos showing his mother Margaret were shown in court as a forensic pathologist testified about her death.  All three victims were shot, according to officials.

Prosecutors say Amato's motive was his online obsession with a Bulgarian webcam model. They say he stole around $200,000 from his family to send to her.

Investigators allege that on January 24, Amato was kicked out of the house. A neighbor testified that she heard gunshots that same night between 8:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m.  Jennifer Sawyer said it struck her as unusual.

"Because it had been dark for a while. It was the winter months," she testified.

Sawyer says she and her husband decided not to call police, because they believed it was someone shooting an animal. The three bodies were discovered in the Amato home the next morning.
Prosecutors also pointed out that Grant Amato knew his way around guns. They showed photos of him at a gun range with a trainer.

The state argues after Amato shot his family members, he tried to make it look like a murder-suicide. The shell casings and bullets in the house didn't match up.

"I would say that there are at least two firearms represented here," said Richard Ruth, an analyst with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.

The defense has started calling witnesses. Their case will continue Wednesday.