Florida man allegedly depressed from coronavirus kills wife, son: cops

A Florida man whose relatives reportedly suspect was depressed over the coronavirus pandemic fatally shot his wife and 21-year-old son, sheriff officials said.Smith Rivera, 59, of Orlando, is facing two counts of first-degree murder and one count of attempted first-degree murder after confessing to a deputy in the early Sunday shooting, according to an arrest affidavit obtained by the Orlando Sentinel.

“I shot my wife,” Rivera said of his 57-year-old partner, Jodie, according to the report.

Rivera also allegedly admitted to investigators that he gunned down his 21-year-old son, Matthew, WESH reported. The father of three had been depressed due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, his sister told the station.

Rivera allegedly fired shots at a second son as well, but he managed to escape the family’s home unharmed, the station reported.

Both Jodie and Matthew were pronounced dead at the scene, where Smith returned as deputies searched the residence, sheriff officials said.

Smith also confessed that he shot his wife to another man who lived at the home but isn’t related to the family, the affidavit states.

The unidentified man said Smith then fired several shots at him before chasing him out of the house. The dad fled in his car but deputies later arrested him when he drove back to the Whisper Lakes Estates subdivision, according to affidavit.

Several spent shell casings were found inside the home and in a driveway, while a box of ammunition was recovered from inside a bathroom where Smith was spotted with his firearm, WKMG reported.

Smith remained held without bond Monday at Orange County Jail, records show. It’s unclear if he’s hired an attorney.


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