Grant Amato stole hundreds of thousands of dollars from his family. They did everything possible to keep him out of jail and he thanked them with bullets.
According to Michael Williams? Orlando Sentinel article, ?Obsession, money, lies tore Grant Amato?s family apart. A jury will decide whether he killed them,? Grant began to steal money from his father and Cody to pay for Silvie?s virtual company. He would spend up to four hours a night watching Silvie do what cam girls do. The site used a token system to buy time with their models.
Grant typically bought 5,000 tokens at a time which cost $600. Silvie?s shows cost 90 tokens per minute. If he watched for four hours, that added up to 21,600 tokens and roughly $2,500. His desperation to keep Silvie in his life made him resort to thieving from the people who loved him.
The young man also needed to keep up the facade he portrayed when interacting with Silvie as someone rich and successful. He would send her lingerie and sex toys to use during her performances as well as extra cash aside from the tokens.
Grant stole credit cards from his father and Cody that would quickly get maxed out. When these transactions were first discovered, Grant explained that he needed the money to promote himself on Twitch. The two of them expected that he was lying, but Grant felt no need to stop because he knew they would never press charges.
The amount of money that Grant stole from his family became astronomical. Between his father and brother, he had taken about $200,000 in a span of months.
But the family protected their youngest member and continued to live as his hostages. Cody went above and beyond normal brethren duties. He shelled out $10,000 so he and Grant could go on an already planned trip to Japan. He hoped the vacation would allow Grant to clear his head. After the 10-day trip, they could seek treatment and therapy for the troubled man.
When the brothers returned home, the tension between Grant and his father increased. Chad Amato was becoming impatient with Grant?s inability to find a job. The stress he experienced from seeing his retirement being handed over to a woman his son had never even met in person was too much to contain and he rode Grant hard to turn his life around.
After one argument, Grant walked out of the house. His family reported him missing and told the police that he was extremely depressed.
Grant went to the home of his aunt, Donna Amato, and was allowed to stay over. She noticed that something was wrong with her nephew. Then she started seeing bizarre charges in her bank account and thought that she had been hacked, but figured out that they were from Grant. Chad and Margaret begged Donna not to press charges and Cody even promised to cover all the money stolen by his brother.
In Williams? article, he said that Chad broke down during one phone call, the only time Donna Amato had heard her brother-in-law cry in the 27 years she knew him. Chad explained that he had to remortgage his house to cover $150,000 of Grant?s debt.
One day the family surprised Grant and took him to a rehab facility. Cody footed the bill to the tune of $15,000. After a couple of weeks, Grant was allowed to return home, but there were strict rules with a zero-tolerance policy.
The requirements were: Grant had to get a job, he could not get online at night, he couldn?t have a cell phone, he could not contact Silvie, he had to go to therapy, and the family was done covering any of Grant?s debts. Chad had let another fraudulent line of credit go through and it was the last straw.
The rules meant almost nothing to Grant as he never faced real consequences. He was able to con his mother into letting him use her phone to contact Silvie. According to Williams? article, when Chad became aware of this, he grabbed his son by the shirt, told him to pack his things and get out of the house. He was no longer welcome.
On January 24, 2019, when Grant was supposed to be gathering his belongings to move, he decided on a different plan. While his mother worked on the computer, Grant walked up behind her and shot her in the head. He then waited for his father to get home.
Chad Amato carried a gun on him, so Grant knew he needed to sneak up on him. When his father arrived home and walked into the kitchen, Grant shot him twice in the head. Two down, one to go.
The finale was Cody. He was the key piece of Grant?s twisted plot. When Cody got out of his nursing shift and went home, he had no idea what he was walking into. Cody came inside the house and was immediately shot in the head.
Grant then attempted to stage the scene to give the impression that Cody had killed their parents then turned the gun on himself. After a full day of murder, Grant went to a hotel.
The next day when Cody failed to show up for work, his coworkers became worried when they could not contact him, so they alerted the police. When the cops got to the home and could not get any response from banging on the door and blowing an air horn, they went inside to discover the gruesome scene. They tracked down Grant and took him in for questioning.
Authorities found several pictures on Grant?s computer of credit cards belonging to his parents, Cody, and various members of the extended Amato family.
Grant Amato was questioned and interviewed. Three hours into the interrogation he hadn?t even asked what happened to his family or why he was there. When confronted with pictures of his dead family Grant teared up, but claimed he had nothing to do with it.
Towards the end of the long interrogation, the police had Grant?s oldest brother Jason come and talk to him. Grant didn?t budge. He wouldn?t come clean and was arrested on three charges of first-degree murder.
Grant lied during questioning and during the hearings. None of it worked and on July 31, 2019, jurors found Grant guilty of all three counts of first-degree murder. He received a life sentence for each.
The depths of loneliness can take people to a place they never imagined. Between pornography and virtual dating, Grant Amato finally found something and someone that made him feel good about himself. He knew the cam girl game was all about money, but still wanted to believe someone as beautiful as Silvie liked him for more than just his cash and gifts even though he could only talk to her by spending money.
Obsession is powerful. Grant?s infatuation made him throw away the only people who loved him. Within a matter of months, Silvie became the only thing that mattered to him. His parents gave him an amazing life full of privileges that many American kids don?t experience.
He took advantage of his brother and only friend?s generosity, then used him as a pawn in an attempt to implicate him in the murders. Cody spent countless days and tens of thousands of dollars to try and help his little brother and was discarded like trash for his 30 plus years of loyalty.
The Amato?s were incredibly compassionate people whose lives ended in heartbreaking fashion. Their unwavering love for their son couldn?t compete with his desire for a young vixen with a sexy accent.