A judge Friday declared a mistrial in the case of a son accused of killing his dad in , dismembering the body, and trying to conceal the crime.
The trial of Jimmy Scandirito II was halted after three days because of Assistant Public Defender Elizabeth Ramsey’s absence due to medical reasons, which were kept private.
Palm Beach County Circuit Judge Laura Johnson set an Oct. 4 hearing to possibly decide on a date for a retrial. The defense previously demanded a speedy trial, which is unusual in first-degree murder cases.
When the trial began last week, Ramsey said her client’s father, James “Skip” Scandirito Sr., 74, died a natural death from heart problems less than six months ago while at home.
But she conceded Jimmy Scandirito, 49, made the poor decision of chopping up the body and trying to , because of a fear that police would find marijuana at the property, in the 400 block of Northwest 72nd Street.
Prosecutors Andrew Slater and Emily Walters told the jury that Scandirito carefully , a former district judge in Macomb County, Mich., north of Detroit.
During a missing person’s investigation, Boca Raton Police detectives discovered the younger Scandirito was recorded on Publix store video buying duct tape, garbage bags and cleaning supplies with his father’s debit card, police said.
An arrest report also stated that Jimmy Scandirito was the sole beneficiary on many of his father’s accounts, worth about $800,000.
at 5800 NW Second Ave. At about 3:30 a.m. on April 4, police watched Scandirito, a licensed real estate broker from Fort Lauderdale, enter the property with a bag and then leave with a larger suitcase that was tossed into a dumpster.
Police said they later collected the suitcase, opened it, and found bloody clothing and the odor of decomposing remains, according to an arrest report.
Later, Skip Scandirito’s torso and both upper legs were found in a 4-foot-deep hole at the old golf course property where the man used to work in the pro shop, prosecutors said. Evidence of bodily fluids was found in the kitchen and garage of the man’s home about 1.5 miles away.
But the head and other parts weren’t recovered.
A , agreeing he killed his dad between March 28 and April 4 by “utilizing unspecified means.”
A Palm Beach County assistant medical examiner, Dr. Reinhard Motte, who conducted the autopsy found that the dismemberment occurred after Scandirito was dead. The doctor also stated that if the body was all intact, he would have listed the cause of death as heart failure due to the existence of cardiac disease.
There was no evidence of an injury to the body parts.
“Somebody who dies a natural death isn‘t taken and chopped into pieces, you know,” Motte said in a deposition.
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