Early Monday morning, a neighbor saw 18-year-old Brandon Machetto dragging his grandmother's wrapped corpse to her minivan, apparently having checked to see if the coast was clear. In addition to not spotting the neighbor, Machetto failed to conceal his grandmother's feet, prompting the call to police.
At roughly 10 a.m. a deputy spotted Machetto and attempted to pull him over. Machetto fled, driving back to Paradise Lakes Condominium Association where he was finally arrested.
Although Machetto has a history of criminal domestic violence, including an altercation with the grandmother he would eventually allegedly murder, those who knew him say he started out as a good kid. But all that changed after one violent incident five years ago.
"He did what you would tell him to do, he was never disrespectful," said Ronnie Hall. Hall taught Machetto Krav Maga for seven years. The martial arts instructor said Machetto suffered mental damage when he was jumped and struck in the head with a brick in 2009.
"He was very nervous, very agitated, and the first time he got into trouble with his grandmother was because he wouldn't take his medication," Hall told Tampa Bay CBS affiliate WTSP.
"The brain injury that he suffered when he was struck in the back of the head with a rock — that he almost died from — never allowed him to mature and I think that's got to do with it."