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Son fatally wounded father, injured mother in South Tampa stabbing, records show

Alex Kaptzan was fatally stabbed by his 21-year-old son in the May 21 attack that also left the mother wounded, records show.
Anthony Kaptzan, 21, faces charges of second-degree murder and attempted second-degree murder, records show. He is accused of attacking his parents, fatally stabbing his father and wounding his mother, according to investigative records. He is being held without bail in the Hillsborough County jail.
Anthony Kaptzan, 21, faces charges of second-degree murder and attempted second-degree murder, records show. He is accused of attacking his parents, fatally stabbing his father and wounding his mother, according to investigative records. He is being held without bail in the Hillsborough County jail. [ Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office ]
Published May 27, 2020
Updated May 27, 2020

TAMPA — The 21-year-old man facing charges in last week’s fatal stabbing attacked his parents, killing his father and wounding his mother.

The father, Alex Kaptzan, 52, was fatally wounded in the May 21 attack at the family’s South Tampa home, according to investigative records. He later died at Tampa General Hospital. Mother Ivette Kaptzan, 55, was also wounded by her oldest son, records show.

Anthony Kaptzan, 21, faces charges of second-degree murder and attempted second-degree murder. He is being held without bail in the Hillsborough County jail.

Alex Kaptzan was senior vice president of convention sales for Visit Tampa Bay, Hillsborough County’s tourism bureau, the agency said.

The Tampa Police Department has not released the names of the victims in that incident because of the department’s interpretation of Marsy’s Law, a 2018 amendment to the Florida Constitution intended to protect crime victims. But word began to spread on social media that Alex and Ivette Kaptzan were the victims as friends posted condolences.

An obituary for Alex Kaptzan says he died May 21 and is survived by his wife Ivette and sons Anthony, 21, and Andrew, 18.

A photo of the online obituary of Alex Katpzan, 52, who was fatally stabbed by his son on May 21, according to investigative records.
A photo of the online obituary of Alex Katpzan, 52, who was fatally stabbed by his son on May 21, according to investigative records. [ Screengrab from dignitymemorial.com ]

According to the 21-year-old’s arrest affidavit, Ivette Kaptzan called 911 because Anthony Kaptzan was “not acting normal." He then became agitated and retrieved a large kitchen knife. His father tried to intervene, the report said, and the son attacked him.

The mother heard yelling in the kitchen area and returned to find the son on top of the father. She tried to help her husband, but the report said the son then attacked and wounded her.

The report does not name the father or mother, but notes that “Victim #1” was fatally wounded and “Victim #2” called 911 again just after 7 p.m. to report that Anthony Kaptzan had stabbed “both her and her husband” a number of times. An unnamed witness in the home also identified the 21-year-old as the attacker, the report said.

Paramedics took the couple to Tampa General, where Alex Kaptzan was pronounced dead. Ivette Kaptzan was treated for stab wounds in the head, back and chest, the report said.

Anthony Kaptzan was also taken to Tampa General to be treated for stab wounds on his hands that required surgery, the report said. When investigators tried to interview him, he asked for an attorney. He told officers that his father knew who his lawyer was and “I stabbed him this morning," the report said.

No motive for the attack was disclosed in the arrest report. The mother later told police her son was “acting lethargic and suffers from anxiety.” Anthony Kaptzan graduated from Plant High School in 2017, according to his Instagram account.

The Kaptzan family declined to speak to the Tampa Bay Times.

Alex Kaptzan recently lost his job at Visit Tampa Bay due to the impact of the pandemic on tourism.

“We are devastated by the loss of our friend and colleague, Alex Kaptzan,” said a statement from the agency. “His passion for his work was immeasurable and the friendships he made during his 14-year career at Visit Tampa Bay were both impactful and endless.”

Alex Kaptzan was born in Mexico City and grew up in Miami. He graduated from Florida International University and moved to Tampa Bay to work in the hospitality industry, according to his obituary.

“These were his people and he loved celebrating this city with them,” the obituary said.

He loved traveling with his family, fishing, bicycling and tending orchids. He was “a connoisseur of music,” according to the obituary, and "instilled the love and knowledge of classic rock in his son, Anthony, who became a skilled guitarist.”

“Family meant the world to Alex,” the obituary said. “They were his purpose in life. He was a dedicated father to his boys and participated in all their activities.”

A family friend, Helene Miller, said Alex Kaptzan was one of the kindest people she knew.

“My youngest always rode his bike to their home and weekends. ... Alex was a dad he never had,” she said. “But he was like that, a genuine loving soul. We are heartbroken.”

Times staff writer Josh Fiallo contributed to this report.