Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Hernando abuse trial begins after woman rejects second plea deal

Tai-Ling Gigliotti, 51, rejected a plea deal that could have meant no prison time. She may get 60 years if convicted.

KERI WIGINTON | Times

Tai-Ling Gigliotti, 51, rejected a plea deal that could have meant no prison time. She may get 60 years if convicted.

BROOKSVILLE — A Spring Hill woman accused of imprisoning a 17-year-old boy in a bathroom and repeatedly beating him rejected another plea deal Monday morning, minutes before her trial was to begin.

Tai-Ling Gigliotti, 51, got her wish, and a jury was finally selected late Monday. Testimony is expected to begin today. Gigliotti faces two counts of aggravated child abuse. If convicted, she could get 60 years in prison.

Monday's plea offer would have reduced one charge of aggravated child abuse to false imprisonment. Had Gigliotti accepted the agreement, a sentencing hearing would have been set for July 8, where her punishment would have ranged from no prison time to about six years.

But Gigliotti made it clear that she wanted a jury trial. "I cannot accept that offer," she said Monday morning.

The jurors are five women and one man. All but one of the jurors are parents.

"Parents are much better equipped to understand some of the things that are going to be talked about in here," said Jimmy Brown, Gigliotti's attorney.

Circuit Judge Jack Springstead said he expects the trial to last at least a week. Prosecutor Brian Trehy said the alleged victim is expected to take the witness stand today.

Trehy previously raised objections to starting the trial this week, noting that Brown had submitted a new witness list last week. The prosecutor said he would be at a disadvantage because he has had little time to interview Brown's new witnesses. But Springstead insisted on pushing forward with the trial.

Monday, Trehy said he was unable to interview any of the new witnesses. "It hasn't been done at all," Trehy said. "But I'm obviously not going to get any more time."

Gigliotti also rejected a plea deal during a pretrial hearing Thursday, bursting into tears as she appeared before Springstead. In that deal, Gigliotti could have gotten as much as eight years in prison.

On that same day, Gigliotti's former fiance, Anton Angelo, was sentenced to five years of probation in exchange for his testimony against her.

In a deposition released Friday, Angelo testified that the teenager — Gigliotti's nephew — trashed his car, burned down a cabana behind their Spring Hill home and put glass and nails in the dog food. As the boy grew older and his behavior became more troubling, Angelo said he and Gigliotti feared for their lives.

"I was physically afraid for my life," Angelo said.

Gigliotti, the widow of famed clarinetist Anthony Gigliotti, and the boy moved from the Philadelphia area to a house on Whitmarsh Street in Spring Hill in 2004.

According to investigators, the abuse quickly followed. When the teen escaped from a barricaded bathroom in the house in early February 2009 and ran to neighbors for help, he told authorities he had spent nearly 15 months imprisoned there.

Hernando abuse trial begins after woman rejects second plea deal 05/03/10 [Last modified: Monday, May 3, 2010 10:43pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. 'What Happened'? Clinton memoir sold 300,000 copies in first week

    Blogs

    Despite being met with decidedly mixed reviews, What Happened, Hillary Clinton's new memoir about the 2016 presidential campaign, sold a whopping 300,000 copies in its first week.

    The new memoir by former presidential candidate Hillary Clinton sold 300,000 copies in its first week.
  2. After Irma topples tree, home sale may be gone with the wind

    Real Estate

    ST. PETERSBURG — To house hunters searching online, the home for sale in St. Petersburg's Shore Acres neighborhood couldn't have looked more appealing — fully renovated and shaded by the leafy canopy of a magnificent ficus benjamini tree.

    Hurricane Irma's winds recently blew over a large ficus tree, left, in the yard of a home at 3601Alabama Ave NE, right, in Shore Acres which is owned by Brett Schroder who is trying to sell the house.
[SCOTT KEELER   |   Times]

  3. Bucs' Josh Robinson excited for return to Vikings

    Bucs

    For much of Josh Robinson's four seasons with the Vikings, there was excitement leading up to the arrival of the $1.1-billion U.S. Bank Stadium, which opened last season, just as Robinson signed with the …

    Josh Robinson (26) tackles Chicago punt returner Eddie Royal (19) during a game between the Bucs and Bears in 2016. [LOREN ELLIOTT | Times]
  4. For starters: Rays at Orioles, meeting up with ex-mate Tim Beckham

    Blogs

    The Rays open their final roadtrip of the season tonight in Baltimore, and - continuing the theme of the week - willl cross paths with another familiar face, INF Tim Beckham.

    Tim Beckham made a smashing debut with the Orioles, hitting .394 with six homers and 19 RBIs in August.
  5. Unemployment claims double in Florida after Hurricane Irma

    Business

    The number of Americans seeking unemployment benefits dropped by 23,000 last week to 259,000 as the economic impact of Hurricane Harvey began to fade.

    Homes destroyed by Hurricane Irma on Big Pine Key last week. Hurricane Irma continued to have an impact on the job market in Florida, where unemployment claims more than doubled from the previous week.
[The New York Times file photo]