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    Saturday, July 13, 2024

    Todt in call from jail: ‘I couldn’t stop this because I wasn’t there'

    In a March phone call from jail, Anthony Todt told his sister that he couldn’t stop his family from being murdered.

    “I couldn’t stop this because I wasn’t there,” he told Chrissy Caplet, who lives in Connecticut but was in Florida at the time of the call after assuming power of attorney over her older brother.

    In two calls between Todt and Caplet in March and April, Todt suggested that his wife, Megan, had been responsible for her own death as well as the deaths of their three children and family dog. He suggested that she may have tried to kill them before.

    “There were multiple attempts, just so you know, multiple attempts in the last ... over a time frame, there’s been attempts,” Todt said in a quiet voice, almost a whisper. “Which is why this time I was stuck down here trying to handle things.”

    Todt, a well-liked physical therapist and soccer coach in Colchester, typically lived in Connecticut during the week and traveled to see his family where they were living in Celebration, Fla., every weekend. In November 2019, he left behind his physical therapy patients and employees with no answers as to when he would return.

    In two phone calls to Caplet, who he calls “Cheesepuff,” released to The Day in October, Todt suggested that his wife prohibited him from asking his extended family for help, kept him from telling anyone about their precarious financial situation and had barred him from seeing a doctor for health issues.

    These remarks and others, obtained from the Orange and Osceola counties State Attorney’s Office through a public records request, offer a rare glimpse into Todt’s thinking since his arrest. He was found inside his family's home in Celebration, with the decomposing bodies of his family on Jan. 13, 2020, when the FBI arrived to arrest him on a warrant stemming from a federal health care fraud investigation in Connecticut. Shortly after his arrest, he confessed to killing his wife, Megan, 42, their children, Alek, 13, Tyler, 11, and Zoe, 4, and the family dog, Breezy, according to the Osceola County Sheriff's Office.

    The bodies of Megan and the children were found wrapped in blankets, decomposing in a second-floor bedroom of their large family home in a quiet neighborhood, days after family members in Connecticut called police requesting welfare checks on Megan and the children, whom they said hadn't been heard from in weeks.

    In January, Todt pleaded not guilty to the murders, for which he was charged with four counts of first-degree homicide and one count of animal cruelty and is facing the death penalty following a grand jury vote.

    In July, he wrote a 27-page letter to his once estranged father, Robert Todt, in which he blamed his wife for the murders. He said Megan fed their children a pie laced with Benadryl before fatally stabbing herself.

    'We're just so confused'

    In the phone call made in March, Todt told his younger sister that he’d been in counseling while in the Osceola County Jail.

    “I just want to say I’m sorry for anything I’ve done to upset you,” he said, offering apologies to Caplet and other family members. He goes on to say that “life is very fragile.” 

    When police found Todt at his Celebration home in January, he said he had ingested a great amount of Benadryl, according to investigators. He was brought to a hospital for an evaluation and was placed on suicide watch.

    After hearing his apology, Todt’s sister took a long, deep breath and spoke again. 

    “We love you, we’re just so confused at all of this,” she said, reminding her brother not to discuss details of the case on the recorded line. “It’s just, you know that we would’ve done anything for you and that’s the part that just hurts. We want to help you and we wanted to help you in any way that we could have.” 

    In response, Todt told his sister, “I wasn’t allowed.” 

    “I’m sorry I was forced to move away from you guys, that was all her,” he said of his late wife. “She had it really limited and didn’t want anyone to know anything about what was going on.” 

    “I just wish that you had talked to us, whether you were allowed to or not,” Caplet replied. “I just wish you would’ve talked to us.” 

    While talking about his therapy, Todt said that he was feeling guilty about something that happened in college and appealed to his sister for help. He asked her to contact a woman he once sent flowers to while he and Megan were briefly broken up in college. Todt said that he and Megan broke up for two months because Megan was upset that he was spending a lot of time playing soccer. During that break-up, he asked another woman out to dinner. He said he had felt like things were awkward between him and that woman for years and that he wanted his sister to apologize to her on his behalf.

    “I could just use all the support I could,” he said.

    At one point, Todt asked about Megan’s aunt and uncle, who often visited the family in Florida and spent time with them in Connecticut every year around the holidays. He asked his sister if they were OK. 

    “Well, I say this with love, but it’s a stupid question to ask, you know what I mean?” Chrissy said. “This hasn’t been easy on any of us.” She added that her aunt and uncle also wish they’d known what the family had been dealing with in private. 

    Caplet said that her side of the family and Megan’s family were working through their grief together. 

    “We’re all grieving, we’re all family and we’re all trying to get through this together,” she said. 

    Family was 'everything to me'

    In the April phone call, Todt and Caplet began by talking about his health at length, specifically his blood sugar and blood pressure levels. He addressed his thyroid, which, he told Caplet, he’s taking daily medication for. He said he felt “so much better, and mentally there, and full of energy.”

    Caplet asked if Todt’s thyroid issues were sudden or long-coming. Todt said he had been “gaining weight so much, I got up to 294, 297, and I didn’t even know it. I was like, ‘Holy crap,’ you know?'” He went on to tell a story about one day in October or August of 2019 when Megan, Alek and Tyler Todt went grocery shopping, leaving him alone with Zoe.

    “She put her cowboy boots on, and we were watching ‘Aladdin,’ and then next thing I know, Megan was shaking me,” Todt said. “I was passed out with my head on the sectional — I was on the floor behind the table.”

    Todt then made it seem as if Megan Todt had been in favor of avoiding traditional medicine. Immediately after the incident when he had passed out, Todt added, “I looked at (Megan) like, ‘Can I go to the doctor now? We’re trying all these things here, I need to find out what’s going on.’”

    Caplet asked Todt why he had passed out. He said it was a combination of his blood sugar, his thyroid, hypertension and possibly low testosterone.

    The conversation moved to Todt’s social interactions in prison.

    “I got POs that come by, a different one each day, there’s one guy who consistently comes by every other day, and he tells me the news, and we talk,” Todt said. “They’re really good to me here ... They’ll come by and say, ‘When you get out of here, you got to write a book. When you get home, you got to write a book about this place.’ I’m like, ‘Yeah, yeah, I know.’”

    “We don’t need any books written,” Caplet replied.

    “It’s just a common joke, you know what I mean,” Todt said. “The craziness that happens here, you can’t even describe it. It’s interesting.”

    “I can only imagine,” Caplet said.

    She asked how Todt was sleeping. He said he’d recently had trouble “because I’m kind of upset emotionally ... Meg and the kids were everything to me, you know?”

    “Yeah,” Caplet said.



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