As summer was winding down, four decaying bodies were found stacked on a hill in Hudson.
Now prosecutors are seeking the death penalty for Adam Matos, 29, who they say murdered his ex-girlfriend, her parents and the man she had recently begun dating.
Authorities had visited the Brown family's home, where Matos was staying, in early September after receiving a tip that no one could be reached there. Inside, a Pasco County sheriff's deputy found large amounts of blood. About a mile away, deputies found the bodies, some with gunshot wounds, others with evidence of severe trauma.
They were 27-year-old Megan Brown, the mother of Matos' 4-year-old son; her parents, Margaret and Greg Brown, and Nicholas Leonard, 37.
A search and media blitz ensued. Deputies soon found Matos at a Tampa hotel, where he had checked in with his son. The child, severely autistic, was unharmed and has since been adopted.
Authorities found weapons inside and surrounding the Browns' home, including crossbows, rifles and knives, as well as blood-soaked rugs and sheets. In a jailhouse interview with the Tampa Bay Times, Matos denied the crime. He is being held without bail in the Pasco County Jail. A trial date has not been set.
By Claire McNeill