1. Archive

Prosecutors recount rape of daughter, slaying of son-in-law

On his daughter's 20th birthday, prosecutors say, Anthony LaMarca did two things that changed her life: He killed her husband and raped her.

As testimony in his first-degree murder trial began Tuesday, the 42-year-old Dunedin man watched and listened impassively as prosecutors told a Pinellas County jury how Kevin Flynn died with two .22-caliber bullets in his head.

With no expression, LaMarca propped his chin in his hand and gazed at his daughter while she testified, sobbing, that he was the last person she had seen her husband with during a birthday celebration that ended with her rape and the discovery of Flynn's body.

It happened Dec. 2, 1995, four months after LaMarca was released from state prison. He served 11 years of a 22-year sentence for kidnapping and attempted rape in Miami.

His daughter and other family members picked him up in Hardee County when he was released, trying to get acquainted with a man they hardly knew.

LaMarca rented a mobile home in Dunedin near his daughter, her husband and their daughter. They got together to play pool, fish and drink.

Flynn, 30, gave his wife a new pool stick for her birthday. They and LaMarca went to a Dunedin bar to celebrate with drinks and some pool. When Flynn gave LaMarca a ride home that night, the two men argued.

Prosecutors contend that LaMarca got angry when Flynn told him the family did not want him around anymore. That's when, they say, LaMarca fired an old Sears .22-caliber rifle at Flynn.

In a 35-minute opening statement, Pinellas Assistant State Attorney Glenn Martin told jurors the first shot hit Flynn in the forehead. Another shot went into Flynn's right ear after he fell.

"He walks over and shoots him a second time in the head," said Martin, pointing to LaMarca. "(Flynn) is lying there in a pool of blood while (his wife) is celebrating her birthday."

The defense chose not to make an opening statement Tuesday to the jury.

Jurors were told LaMarca returned to the bar after shooting Flynn and convinced his daughter that Flynn had gone to take a relative to her grandfather's house in Hudson. She and LaMarca went to Hudson, supposedly to pick up Flynn.

Looking away from her father, she testified that he grabbed her around the neck when they arrived at the Hudson house, kicked the door open and forced her inside. She said LaMarca asked her if she would kill him. She testified that she told him she would, but he looked for a gun in a closet and could not find one.

He left her alone momentarily, she said, and she tried but failed to get out a sliding glass door. She turned around and saw him.

"He was standing there without any clothes on," she said. "He grabbed me from behind again . . . I couldn't breathe."

She testified that he forced her into a bedroom, had sex with her and let her get dressed. LaMarca asked her to leave town with him, she said, and told her that her feelings for Flynn would not last more than a year. She refused to go with him.

LaMarca went to her car and got a .22-caliber rifle. He told her he planned to kill himself and told her to call 911 after she left.

She called 911 anonymously and then began calling relatives to find her husband, who had not answered when she paged him several times earlier. At 2 a.m. the next day, deputies found Flynn's body in LaMarca's mobile home.

LaMarca disappeared. Six weeks later, a SWAT team converged on a bar in the tiny town of Springdale, Wash., and arrested him.

Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty in the case before a jury of five men and seven women.

A Pinellas Park firefighter who was a former police officer was released from the jury Tuesday before any testimony when he told Pinellas Circuit Judge Brandt Downey III that he had already decided LaMarca was guilty. He was replaced by an alternate juror.