A Florida man was arrested after his wife and three children were found dead inside their Disney-developed home after the family had been reported missing, police confirm.
On Monday at about 9:30 a.m., Osceola County Sheriff’s Office deputies accompanied federal agents from the Department of Health and Human Services to serve an unrelated arrest warrant to Anthony “Tony” Todt, 44, at his rented home in Celebration, Sheriff Russ Gibson said at a Wednesday press conference.
It was not immediately clear what that warrant was for, but while conducting a safety check of the home, deputies “discovered four deceased individuals inside,” Gibson said.
Calling the murders “despicable,” Gibson alleged Todt confessed to killing his wife, Megan Todt, 42, and the couple’s three children, Alek, 13, Tyler, 11 and Zoey, 4. Todt also allegedly confessed to killing the family dog, Breezy.
Authorities believe the bodies of the mother and children had been inside the home since late December, Gibson said.
The cause of death was determined to be homicide, he said.
Gibson would not reveal how they were killed, saying he was going to wait until the medical examiner released the results.
On Wednesday, the Osceola County Sheriff’s Office obtained a warrant for Todt’s arrest. He is charged with multiple counts of homicide and with one count of felony animal cruelty, said Gibson, who added Todt is cooperating with the investigation.
Todt is being held at the Osceola County Jail.
Todt and his family moved to Celebration from Colchester, Connecticut, though it’s unclear how long they’d lived in the Disney dream town.
“They were always good people,” Dimitri Koutsofavas, who owns Maria’s Pizza Place in Colchester, told The Norwich Bulletin.
“We met when we were coaching our kids at soccer,” he said. “All the people that knew them had nothing but good things to say.”
The family had been renting a home in Celebration, which was originally developed by Disney and backs up to Disney World, WMKG reports. It’s no longer owned by Disney.
While neighbors said they seemed like a happy family, they were facing financial woes.
On December 26, the family was served with an eviction notice after failing to pay rent at their condo, online documents at the Osceola County Clerk’s Office show.
On Dec. 29, deputies conducted a welfare check at the home at the request of an out-of-state family member, but left when they were unable to make contact with anyone inside, Gibson said.
The family was then reported missing on Jan. 6.
Concerned friends and family created a Facebook group called “Looking for the Todt Family,” writing that they were “Worried sick!” and “Praying for their safe return.”
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Todt and his wife have owned a company called Family Physical Therapy in Colchester and East Hampton since 2008, according to his LinkedIn profile.
Megan Todt, a certified yoga instructor who also had a master’s in physical therapy, worked there as a physical therapist, according to the Family Physical Therapy Facebook page.
On the company Facebook page, it says that in Anthony Todt’s free time, “he enjoys spending time with family, coaching in the community, watching his clients’ athletic competitions, and being the fourth kid in his family of two sons and one daughter.”
Todt has not yet entered a plea. It is unclear if he has retained an attorney who can speak on his behalf.