On January 3, 1971,
Carl “Charlie” Brandt
– at age 13 – killed his
pregnant mother and wounded his father in Fort Wayne.
On September 15, 2004,
47, hanged himself after stabbing his wife, Teri, and dismembering the
body of niece Michelle Jones. He also is suspected of killing at least
two other women in Florida.
A Family Tragedy Unmasks A Killer's
By Daniel Schorn - CBSNews.com
Michelle Jones was a successful TV
executive, living the good life in Orlando, Fla. When a hurricane
threatened the Florida Keys, Michelle invited her aunt and uncle to take
shelter with her in Orlando.
Days later, Michelle and the aunt
were discovered savagely murdered; the uncle committed suicide.
As correspondent Susan Spencer
reports, the investigation would unravel a dark family secret and lead
detectives to the possibility they were dealing with a serial killer.
It has been more than a year since
the shocking murder of Michelle Jones, but her best friends, Lisa Emmons
and Debbie Knight, still feel the loss.
"She wanted so much more out of
life, but she was robbed," says Debbie.
Michelle was 37, single, and a
successful executive at The Golf Channel in Orlando, Fla.
The three women had been friends
since they were teenagers, but the events that would tear them apart
began Tuesday, Sept. 2, 2004. A violent storm, Hurricane Ivan, gathered
in the Atlantic, prompting an evacuation of the Florida Keys.
"Michelle kept an extra-close watch
on it because her aunt and uncle lived there," recalls Lisa.
"She said, 'Of course … Come stay
with me,' " Debbie adds.
To Michelle's delight, the aunt and
uncle, Teri and Charlie Brandt, did come for the weekend; Michelle was
close to both, but especially to Teri, her mother's sister.
"Twenty minutes after they got
there I got the phone call from Michelle. 'Teri and Charlie are here,
where are you? Why aren't you over here?' " remembers Lisa. "They were
"She had a Jacuzzi and a pool. She
had a lovely home," Debbie adds.
Meanwhile in North Carolina,
Michelle's mother, Mary Lou, wondered how the weekend was going. "We
were very close, very close. We talked almost every day," she remembers.
So Mary Lou was puzzled when
Michelle didn't pick up the phone. "We placed a call to Michelle Monday
night and Tuesday night. We got her voice mail," Mary Lou recalls. By
Wednesday night, there was still no answer and Mary Lou was beginning to
get very worried.
She called Debbie, asking her to go
check on Michelle and stayed on the phone as Debbie walked up the drive
to Michelle's home.
Debbie says she thought something
was wrong and was worried about what she would find. When her key
wouldn't open the front door, she headed to the back, with Mary Lou
still on the phone.
"There was a garage door with
almost all glass. So you could see in," Debbie recalls. "I was in shock."
Inside the garage, she could see
Charlie hanging from a rafter.
Even Rob Hemmert, the lead
investigator, had to steel himself for the gruesome scene in the
sweltering garage. "I could see Charlie Brandt hanging from the rafters
in the garage. He was hanging from a bedsheet, which was around his neck,
and there was a ladder close by to his body," he explains.
Brandt had apparently committed
Little could Hemmert imagine what
else awaited him inside Michelle's meticulous house.
"It was just a nice home. It had
that feminine kind of feel to it. All of those nice decorations and the
aroma of her home was masked by death. The smell of death," Hemmert says.
Teri's sat slumped on the living
room couch. She had been stabbed seven times in the chest. Michelle's
mutilated body — decapitated, with her heart removed — was in her room.
All three bodies were locked inside
the house, and Hemmert says there was no indication of any type of
struggle or fight. That led the investigator to one inescapable
conclusion: that Brandt had committed the murders and then hung himself.
As Hemmert pieced events together,
the evening seemed to have started innocently enough. "I know they had
dinner together. Charlie cooked some type of fish. It looks like they
may have had some drinks, some wine and so forth," he explains.
But after dinner, Michelle spoke
with Lisa and told her not to come over. "She said Teri and Charlie had
been arguing and they weren't in the best of company. They had a little
too much to drink. She was tired and she wanted to go to sleep," Lisa
Hemmert learned that although the
Brandts had planned to leave that day, their bags sat in the front hall,
because Charlie insisted on staying the extra night.
"There was no reason for them to
stay behind," Hemmert says. "The hurricane had passed so he chose to
stay for a reason. I think that was because he knew what he was going to
Brandt used Michelle's own kitchen
knives to kill both her and his wife. "Teri was killed in a quick,
repeated stabbing-type attack to her chest. In comparison, Michelle had
one stab wound to the chest," Hemmert explains.
Hemmert says he then carefully put
her blood-soaked clothes in the bathroom sink, before dismembering
Michelle's body. "It all took time. And it took thought," he says.
Mary Lou just couldn't accept that
this monstrous crime was the work of the mild-mannered brother-in-law
she had known for 17 years. "When they described what had happened to
Michelle, it was even beyond description," says Mary Lou.
The crime was just as
incomprehensible to Michelle's horrified friends, who considered Charlie
a bit of an oddball, but certainly no threat.
"He was just very quiet and
reserved," Lisa remembers. "He would just sit back and observe. Michelle
and I used to call him eccentric."
But Charlie was well suited to
Teri's carefree personality, says Debbie. "Teri was gypsy-like. Just
happy-go-lucky. Nothing bothered her. She was a wonderful person. Very
kind, very sweet," she says.
Teri's closest friend, Melanie
Fecher, said Teri and Charlie were inseparable. "If my husband could
love me one-third the amount that Charlie loved Teri, I'd be the
luckiest woman in the whole world," she says.
Melanie says she never detected any
problems in Teri's marriage, saying they never argued, that she never
saw him get angry and that, to her knowledge, Charlie didn't have a
Everyone agreed that it had seemed
a perfect match. "They often did things for each other that would make
each other feel good," says Hemmert. "One of those things was that they
would make their lunches for each other. Because the lunch tasted better
when it was made by the one who loved you."
Yet Charlie stabbed his wife seven
times. He left no note or an explanation. But the first hints came a few
days later from an unexpected source: Charlie's older sister, Angela.
Angela was supposed to join other
relatives for a briefing by police, but she didn't show. "She was in a
car in the parking lot. She basically came to us and said there's
something I need to tell you people," explains Hemmert.
Angela shared with investigators an
explosive secret — a secret her distraught family had kept hidden for
more than three decades.
She haltingly told her story on
tape to a stunned Hemmert, telling him exactly what happened on a
hellish night in January 1971.
At the time, Angela was 15 and
Charlie was 13. They lived with their parents and two younger sisters in
Fort Wayne, Ind.
It was just after 9 p.m., and
Angela was reading in her room. "My mom was in a bath and my dad was
shaving. And I heard my father yell, 'Charlie don't' or 'Charlie stop!'
" Angela tells Hemmert.
"Charlie walked into a bathroom
while his father was shaving. Shot him in the back. He went down. He
stood over her mother, she was in a bathtub, bathing and fired several
rounds into her body and killed her. She was eight months pregnant,"
"The last thing I remember hearing
my mom say was 'Angela, call the police,' " she tells Hemmert in the
But Angela had no time. She told
Hemmert that after shooting their mother, Charlie had turned the gun on
her but that it wouldn't fire. "The next thing she knew they were
physically fighting," Hemmert says.
She said she tried desperately to
calm her brother down by telling him how much she loved him. "I saw the
madness, the glazed over look. I saw it disappear," Angela tells Hemmert.
With her brother calmed down,
Angela ran out of the house screaming in her bloody, torn nightgown. She
ran through the snow to her neighbor's home and pounded on the front
door, startling then-16-year-old Sandi Radcliffe.
But by the time Sandi got to the
door, Angela had already headed to another house; instead, it was
Charlie waiting outside. "There was just a 'knock, knock' and I opened
up the door and he goes, 'Sandi, I just shot my mom and dad,' " she
Newspaper reports of the murder
were sketchy; it was portrayed as a freakish crime by a quiet kid — the
last kid on earth, friends said, who would shoot anyone, much less kill
"That's why this whole incident was
such a shock because they were very close, incredibly so. He was a
momma's boy," says Sandi.
Only a few crime scene photos
survive in the Fort Wayne police archives. Dan Figel, then a young
detective, was in charge of the investigation. When the call came, he
remembers hurrying to the hospital, hoping that Charlie's critically
wounded father would survive and be able to explain what had happened.
"He just kept saying, 'I don't know
why my son did this. I have no idea as to why my son did this,'" Figel
But he did confirm that his son
had done it, and Figel proceeded to take the boy into custody. "He
was in shock. His eyes were dilated and he couldn't understand why he
had done this," says Figel.
Police didn't know what to make of
their 13-year-old killer. The Indiana courts ordered that Charlie
undergo three separate psychological evaluations.
One was with psychiatrist Ronald
Pancner, who agreed with his two colleagues that Charlie was something
of a mystery.
"Basically, I was looking for
mental illness. And he wasn't showing the signs and symptoms of serious
mental illness, which I thought was what the court wanted to know," says
Pancner talked with Charlie about
his friends, his family, his interests, trying to uncover some
underlying problem. "This kid did well in school. He didn't get into any
trouble. He loved his family, he said. And the family said that he was a
loving kid, you know. So, there wasn't anything to diagnose," the
But there was something wrong with
"To the layperson, this doesn't
make sense. The guy killed his mother. She's pregnant. Shot his father.
Why doesn't he have a mental illness? But he doesn't have a diagnosable
mental illness," Pancner says. "We found no psychosis, no distorted
thinking that would basically be a reason for this crime to be done."
Asked why Charlie turned violent,
Pancner says, "We don't know."
Whatever his demons in Indiana, 13-year-old
Charlie was still too young to be held criminally responsible for his
crimes. So he never was charged with murder, and he was never brought to
trial. Instead, a grand jury investigated and issued an ominous warning,
writing that such anti-social conduct could repeat itself in the future.
Charlie was sent to a psychiatric
hospital, where he stayed just over a year — only until his forgiving
father could win his release. Herbert Brandt then pulled up stakes and
moved the entire family, including Charlie, to Florida.
"He never spoke to Charlie about
what took place," says Hemmert. "Never said, 'Hey Charlie, why did you
shoot me? Why did you kill your mother?' You know? 'What were you
thinking? How about an apology?' None of those things. He just accepted
him back into the home as if nothing happened."
Even Charlie's two baby sisters,
too young to remember, were never told the truth about their mother's
death, all of which infuriates Michelle's parents, Bill and Mary Lou.
"There's something wrong here.
There's something wrong with a system that allows a 13-year-old boy to
kill his mother, to try to kill his father and an older sister and
nothing was done," says Mary Lou.
Both Mary Lou and Bill are sure
that, years later, Charlie never told his wife, Teri.
"I don't think she would have
married him, period, at all had she known," explains Bill.
The Joneses say that, to this day,
Herbert and Angela Brandt never have acknowledged that telling Teri
might have saved lives.
Mary Lou says Herbert and Angela
should have known that Charlie had the potential and capacity to kill.
She added that Herbert has never made any effort "to say how sorry he
was that this happened to us."
For Michelle's best friend, Debbie,
the anger goes even deeper. "Charlie's father should be exposed. He knew
what his son did. He knew the crimes he did. I would love to see him
sitting right next to me 'cause I find him guilty," she says.
Herbert, now 75, lives in Florida,
as does Angela, now 51. Both have declined 48 Hours'
requests for interviews.
But talking with them didn't much
help Hemmert understand the twisted psyche of Charlie Brandt. He would
find those clues in the Florida Keys, right where Charlie left them.
Four hundred miles from Orlando,
the Brandts' house on Big Pine Key sat frozen in time, boarded up
meticulously in preparation for the storm.
"I'd never seen anything like it.
Charlie took it to the extreme. Every piece of wooden panel that was cut
for each window looked like it had been custom-fit. The holes for the
doorknobs on the French doors were meticulously cut. Perfectly round
circles," explains Hemmert.
It was something one might expect
from an engineer — Charlie worked as a radar technician.
Inside the house, things were just
as precise. The first shock came when Hemmert stepped into the Brandts'
bedroom and spotted a graphic poster of the female anatomy on the back
of the bedroom door.
"Her hair's put up in a bun. Which
I had never seen before. And it's showing the skeletal system and the
muscular system," Hemmert explains, describing the doctor's office-style
Teri would have seen the poster
every day and Hemmert wonders whether she hadn't considered it a big
deal. "Charlie and Teri were not in the medical profession. We saw no
reason for that chart to be there. What is this doing in someone's home?"
The investigator had an unsettling
answer to his own question. "I'm looking at a chart that's got these
portions of the body exposed. And he's virtually duplicated or exposed
some of those areas of the body in what he did with Michelle," Hemmert
And there were other eerie
reminders, including medical books, journals, and an anatomy book. "And
in that book there was a newspaper clipping that showed a human heart,"
says Hemmert. "Knowing what he did to Michelle and then finding those
things, it all started to make sense."
As did the Victoria's Secret
catalogues found in the house, addressed to Charlie. "He always referred
to Michelle as 'Victoria Secret.' He gave her that name. And he never
referred to her as Michelle," says Hemmert.
Far from being just a friendly
uncle, to the horror of the Jones family, Charlie had been secretly
infatuated with his own niece.
Bill Jones says his daughter would
have been livid had she known about the infatuation.
Hemmert thinks Charlie was obsessed
with Michelle. "He was fascinated by her, and I think ultimately he
intended on killing her. I think that's evident in the way he spoke
about her and the things that he looked at on the Internet," he says.
When investigators examined
Brandt's computer, they found he had been on ghastly Web sites that
featured death fantasies, necrophilia and violence against women.
"You saw where he may have gotten
some of his ideas and thoughts and fantasies from," says Hemmert. "The
thing that we noted immediately was that the things he did with her body
did not appear to be someone who had done this for the fist time — there
had to be more."
Hemmert was quite sure, if he
looked hard enough, he would find evidence that Charlie was a serial
killer. The only real question was how many other victims had there been
over some 30 years. To answer that, police first tried to match their
unsolved murders with Brandt's travels in the United States and abroad.
Potential cases poured in and
investigators weeded through them by focusing on those with specific
similarities to Charlie's murder of Michelle.
Criminal profiler Leslie D'Ambrosia
has been asked to analyze dozens of these cold cases. "There's no
boilerplate profile for a — quote — serial killer. It doesn't exist.
It's all individual; it's based on a person's life experiences and
everyone has a different life experience."
Charlie's trademark was precision
and a methodical technique. "How a person normally behaves is translated
into how they carry their crimes out," says D'Ambrosia. "He's quite
organized and planned in what he does. He's intelligent, very reliable,
And to the outside world, he was
just an ordinary guy. Teri's diaries, found in the house, reflected that
very ordinary life.
"They weren't detailed writings,
they were just something very simple from, went fishing, caught a good
bull dolphin, to nice dinner with Charlie. Boat ran out of gas. Buy
steaks for dinner," explains Hemmert.
There were few hints of anything
wrong. "We only found a couple of interesting notations and those were 'weird
day.' But there's nothing more specific, and we have no idea what
occurred to cause her to write that," says Hemmert.
Teri also noted times when Charlie
was out late, even out all night, but never added explanations in her
Musician Jim Graves spent time with
Charlie in the 1980s, when he was married to Angela. He'll never forget
the day she confided in him that, decades before, Charlie had shot their
parents, killing their pregnant mother.
"I came home one day and she was
crying rather uncontrollably, and said she had something that she
absolutely had to talk to me about," Jim recalls. But he says that,
after getting to know him, it seemed clear that whatever had happened
years before, Charlie was OK now.
"He was so gentle that when there
was a bug in the house he would refuse to step on it and carried it
outside," Jim remembers.
Today, Jim regrets that he didn't
pay more attention — especially during one instance after he and Angela
split up and the two men got to talking.
"We were havin' a few beers after
fishing all day and everything. I was just really despondent. Somehow we
started talking about revenge. Well you know you get your feelings hurt
and wanna lash out. I believe he looked at me and said, 'Well, if you
really wanna get revenge, you should kill somebody and cut their heart
out,' " Jim recalls. "And it creeped me out at the time."
But at the time, Jim dismissed it
and, years later, when a new girlfriend wanted to fix up her friend Teri,
Jim called Charlie.
"No way in the world would I know
that they would fall in love and get married!" says Jim.
Charlie and Teri married on Aug.
29, 1986; Jim was their best man.
"I did have a conversation with
Charlie. And I insisted that he inform her of his past," Jim says.
He says Charlie did tell Teri about
the 1971 shooting. "After they got married and I went down to visit them
I asked them when they were gonna have kids. And she told me,
considering everything, that she didn't think it was a good idea."
Jim took her response to mean that
"Here's the thing about Charlie
Brandt that's disturbing — beyond what we already know is disturbing in
how he commits his crimes," says D'Ambrosia. "He's very well traveled.
For many years, he has traveled all over the United States and even
outside the United States."
More than 30 years had elapsed from
the time he shot his mother until he killed his wife and niece, and what
investigators desperately want to know is how many other crimes Charlie
D'Ambrosia doesn't think we'll ever
know how many murders Charlie is responsible for. But she is working
with Hemmert and a task force from around the state to at least try to
narrow it down.
In the search for unsolved murders
that fit Brandt's peculiar profile, one case immediately jumped out.
It was the 1995 murder of Darlene
Toler, a prostitute in Miami's Little Havana section.
Det. Pat Diaz handled the
investigation and remembers that it was an unusual case. Like Michelle
Jones, Toler had been decapitated and had her heart removed.
Toler's body was found along a
highway. Apart from the manner of her death, two bits of evidence
convince Diaz that Brandt was the killer. "The body was wrapped up in a
blanket, then wrapped up in plastic and tied, almost like a package," he
In that blanket, dog hairs were
found; police also found dog hairs in the back of Charlie Brandt's truck.
Brandt's truck also yielded another clue.
"Every time he put gas in the truck,
he kept the mileage," Diaz says.
In those mileage records, Diaz says,
a spike occurs right around the time Toler was killed, 100 miles away
from Brandt's home.
Asked whether he thinks Brandt
drove from the Keys to Miami just looking for somebody, Diaz says, "He
had come to Miami. Him and his wife worked opposite shifts. And he did
what he had to do."
DNA analysis of animal hair is
difficult and costly, but police say that — if they get it — a match
would close the Toler case.
"That'll get me to 100 percent. It
wouldn't be 99, it'd be 100 percent," says Diaz.
But a second murder, much closer to
home fits the pattern even more convincingly. It dates back 17 years to
a summer night in July 1989. It happened just four blocks from Charlie
Under a bridge off Big Pine Key,
local fishermen had made a frightening find. Initially thinking they
were reeling in a mannequin, the fishermen actually discovered the body
of a woman.
Monroe County Homicide Det. Trish
Dally was the lead investigator in the murder of 38-year-old Sherry
Perisho, a local woman who lived on a small rowboat.
"She had her bicycle that she would
put on the bow of the boat and then she would take the boat out
approximately 100 yards off shore and that's where she lived," Dally
Investigators believe it was also
where she died. "What we believe happened is that she was placed on the
bottom of the boat, possibly with her feet off the stern," Dally says.
For years the boat has been locked
away in the evidence yard. In the wood, one can see cutting marks,
leading Dally to believe the bottom of the boat was used as a cutting
As with the other victims, Perisho
was decapitated, her heart cut out. For years, all police had to go on
was a sketch of a man spotted running across the highway near the scene
— that is until Charlie's former brother-in-law, Jim Graves, revealed
something Teri had told him just after the Perisho murder.
"She goes, 'Well you know, somebody
was killed not too far from our house. I'm thinkin' about, you know,
callin' the sheriff.' And I said, 'Well, why?' And she goes, 'Well,
because of Charlie's past,' " Graves recalls.
Stunned, Graves says he later
confronted Charlie. "I look at him and I said, 'You know your wife
thinks you might've committed this heinous act.' And he was like, 'I
didn't do it,' " he says.
"You didn't think, 'My God, you
know, could he have done this?' " Spencer asks.
"You know, I couldn't tell you what
I was thinking at the time," Graves replies.
But recently, when investigators
were looking again at the Perisho murder, they talked with Graves, who,
under oath, was much more specific about Teri's story.
"She apparently found Charlie
downstairs and he had blood on him. And she asked him what had happened
and he gave an excuse that he was filleting fish, although it was a
workday, it was in the evening, she went ahead and believed him," Det.
Graves' bombshell statement was
enough to close the Perisho case, officially.
Still, questions persist why there
is nothing about the incident in Teri's diaries, or whether she really
believed her husband's explanation. If not, why did she stay with him?
Dally has her own theory. "You're
talking about somebody that you're in a relationship with, you don't
want to believe somebody that you have you committed your life with
would commit a crime, especially that heinous," she explains.
But in the end, Charlie fooled
"And that's the sad part about this
— these people were completely misled," says Hemmert. "They knew Charlie
Brandt to be this guy that they could rely on, that was a friend and was
there when they needed him. 'We knew Charlie.' They knew the 'work'
Charlie. The 'go out on the boat fishing' Charlie. They didn't know the
true Charlie. We do."
In the months since the murders of
Michelle Jones and Teri Brandt, family and friends have struggled to
accept their deaths.
"We have to face every day without
our daughter and that is horrible," says Michelle's mother, Mary Lou.
"We lost two people who were very
dear to us," says Bill, her father.
They have struggled in part because
of the way they died, say Michelle's parents.
"Michelle was totally destroyed and
that is devastating," Mary Lou explains.
Time only has increased the Joneses'
fury toward Herbert and Angela Brandt for protecting Charlie.
"This man may have been able to
have been stopped," says Bill. "He may never have been cured, but he
could have been stopped."
Asked if he holds Herbert and
Angela responsible for the murders, Bill says, "Well, I do, because they
should have gotten the man help. And they knew he needed help."
Mary Lou says Angela told her right
after the murder that she had been terrified of Charlie for years.
"Angela said that she was glad that
Charlie had committed suicide because now she could sleep at night,"
says Mary Lou. "For 20-some years, she would not allow the air
conditioner to run, the windows to be open and unlocked in her home
because she was afraid. She was afraid Charlie would come back to kill
Despite what Jim Graves says, the
Joneses still find it hard to believe that Teri knew anything about her
"It's just very hard for me to
conceptualize my sister could know something about a person who could do
what Charlie did," says Mary Lou. "If she knew that, could she have
stayed with him? I don't know. I don't think so. In my heart I don't
Records from Charlie's brief stay
in the psychiatric hospital might shed more light on his past, but the
Brandt family refuses to allow the state to release them.
"They had a family secret," says
Mary Lou. "The tragedy is that they're going to try and preserve the
"I'd love to see the medical
records and find out what type of treatment he had. If any. And how they
handled him," says Hemmert, who is left with a host of unresolved
questions as well. "What triggered him back in '71 to kill his mother?
What actually was the breaking point for him? I don't know."
Asked what he would want to ask
Charlie if he had the opportunity, Hemmert says, "Why? What was going
through your mind at that specific point in time that caused you to do
what you did? And why was it so different than how you took the life of
Michelle Jones versus your wife Teri?"
Mary Lou has her own theory of why
Charlie did what he did. "I believe he had a covert, evil nature, and I
believe he was able to control it and cover it," she says. "He was an
invisible criminal walking around."
An invisible criminal whose total
number of victims is unlikely ever to be known, despite law
enforcement's best efforts.
"A lot of these cases are cold
cases. They're old. They may not have the physical evidence," Hemmert
explains. "They require an enormous amount of time and legwork. And the
resources are limited everywhere. But we're not going to give up."
Nor will the Joneses, who want new
laws to ensure that the outrage of Charlie Brandt never be repeated.
They are pushing for a public database, much like that for sex offenders,
including anyone of any age who ever has killed another person,
regardless of the circumstances.
"If we can do something to help
somebody else to prevent them from facing what we did, then Michelle's
life will have meaning. Teri's life will have more meaning. There should
not be Charlies on the street," says Mary Lou.
Charlie Brandt is gone, but for
Hemmert this case is, in many ways, not closed.
"I still think about it every day
what happened here," he says. "Michelle and Teri and how evil Charlie
Wayne killer focus of ‘48 Hours’
of Carl “Charlie” Brandt, the suspected serial killer who – at age 13 –
killed his pregnant mother and wounded his father in Fort Wayne, will be
featured tonight on the CBS program “48 Hours Mystery.”
47, hanged himself after stabbing his wife, Teri, and dismembering the
body of niece Michelle Jones. He also is suspected of killing at least
two other women in Florida.
“48 Hours Mystery: Deadly Obsession,” at 10 p.m. on WANE-TV,
Channel 15 is expected to provide more evidence that Brandt was
responsible for one of those deaths and that Teri Brandt suspected her
husband was the killer.
The story is not only one of tragedy but also one of a
long-held family secret: Brandt’s two younger sisters grew up not
knowing their brother killed their mother.
A “48 Hours” production crew of four was in Fort Wayne in
December, said Edward Cochrane, a former Brandt classmate at Jefferson
Junior High School and one of the local people interviewed for the
Cochrane described Brandt as quiet and unassuming at
“He never got in trouble, as far as I’m aware of.” He
said he had little else to say to the producers other than that the Fort
Wayne killing “was the last thing you’d expect from someone like him.”
The shootings 35 years ago and the horrific 2004 slayings
of Brandt’s wife and her niece in Florida were the subject of a two-part
Journal Gazette series in January, “The Darkness in Charlie.”
The slayings occurred Jan. 3, 1971, in the Old Brook
addition east of Shoaff Park. Brandt, a Jefferson Junior High School
ninth-grader, retrieved a handgun from his parents’ bedroom and later
shot them as they prepared for bed. Brandt’s oldest sister, Angela, ran
screaming from the house, alerting neighbors, while their two younger
Carl Brandt told Allen County Sheriff’s Department
investigators, “It was like I was sort of programmed to do it.”
A grand jury determined that Brandt was not criminally
responsible for his actions but cautioned that he might repeat them if
he did not receive psychiatric treatment. He spent a year in a state
mental health hospital in Indianapolis.
After Brandt’s release, his father, who had spent several
weeks in the hospital, moved the family to Ormond Beach, Fla. Carl
became an electronics technician. He met his wife, Teri, in 1985.
The two settled in the Florida Keys. When Hurricane Ivan
threatened the islands in September 2004, they evacuated to Jones’ house
On Sept. 15, 2004, police found Teri Brandt stabbed to
death. Jones had been decapitated and her breasts and heart removed.
Carl Brandt had hanged himself in Jones’ garage.
Brandt had been obsessed with the 37-year-old Jones, said
Rob Hemmert, lead investigator for Florida’s Seminole County Sheriff’s
Office. Investigators also found that Brandt visited Web sites featuring
female autopsies and necrophilia.
Hemmert retrieved information on 26 murders similar to
the Brandt killings from an FBI database. He found no connection in all
but two: the 1995 slaying of Darlene Toler in Miami-Dade County and the
1989 death of Sherry Perisho, 1,000 feet from Brandt’s Big Pine Key home.
A law enforcement task force concluded in March that
Brandt killed Perisho, after an old witness recently identified Brandt
as the person running from the scene, Hemmert said last week.
A former husband of Angela Brandt told “48 Hours Mystery,”
and later investigators, that Teri Brandt suspected her husband killed
Perisho, Hemmert said. Teri Brandt confided to her former brother-in-law
that Carl came home that night bloody and wet, claiming he had been
As a result, Hemmert said, investigators have closed the
Hemmert, who is trying to get Brandt’s medical records
from Indiana, said he still gets a call a week from other police
agencies wondering whether Brandt could be a suspect in cases they are
“I’m just hoping when the story runs on ‘48 Hours’ I’ll
get some additional calls,” he said.
tied to '89 death -- wife suspected him all along
long-unsolved murder in Monroe County was blamed Friday on suspected
serial killer Carl "Charlie" Brandt amid new information that also
revealed Brandt's wife suspected all along that he was a killer.
47, hanged himself in September 2004 after killing his wife, Teresa, 46,
by repeatedly stabbing her in the chest and then stabbing and
dismembering the body of his wife's niece. The Brandts were staying with
the niece, 37-year-old Michelle Jones, at her home in south Seminole
County after fleeing the Florida Keys as Hurricane Ivan threatened.
ties to the additional murder were uncovered not by investigators but by
producers of the CBS show 48 Hours, who passed along the information to
authorities, Seminole sheriff's Investigator Rob Hemmert said Friday.
Graves, who was once married to Carl Brandt's oldest sister, said Teresa
Brandt told him her husband came home wet and covered with blood about
the time Sherry Perisho was killed less than 1,000 feet from their home
in July 1989.
"Teri" Brandt confided in her then-brother-in-law, who lives in Volusia
County, a short time after Perisho's body was found, Hemmert said.
Graves could not be reached for comment Friday.
County investigators also found a witness who identified Brandt as the
man she saw in the area right after the murder.
satisfied that Carl Brandt was the murderer of Sherry Perisho," Monroe
County Sheriff Rick Roth said.
throat was slashed and she was nearly decapitated. Her heart also was
cut out of her chest, authorities said. Those became key details soon
after deputy sheriffs uncovered the grisly double murder-suicide in
Jones also was mutilated and dismembered by Brandt. He used a kitchen
knife to cut off her head and breasts and removed her left leg with the
precision of a surgeon. He removed organs before hanging himself.
Teresa Brandt suspected her husband was a murderer surprised
investigators. She had kept detailed diaries, and investigators had
spent hours poring over them.
Investigators from several counties met with Florida Department of Law
Enforcement profilers and behavioral profilers from Canada in March.
Even without the new information from the former brother-in-law, they
were confident that Brandt was responsible for Perisho's death and they
strongly suspect him in the 1995 mutilation killing of a prostitute in
Miami, Seminole sheriff's investigator Bob Jaynes said.
investigators have looked into at least 24 unsolved murders but have
been unable to tie them to Brandt.
the 48 Hours episode, expected to air later this month or in early June,
will generate new leads.
was just 13 when he killed the first time. He fatally shot his mother
and tried to kill his father in their Indiana home.
Murder-suicide probe points to 26 slayings
October 01, 2005
For a year, investigators have traced the footsteps
of Carl Brandt, poring over journals his wife kept, sorting through
restaurant and gas receipts and interviewing friends and family.
They've detailed his life in a 35-page timeline to
understand the man who came to Central Florida last September seeking
refuge from Hurricane Ivan but then killed his wife and her niece before
He didn't only kill Michelle Jones -- who had opened
her south Seminole County home to her aunt and uncle. He systematically
dismembered Jones' body, removing her head and then using kitchen knives
to cut on her body with the skill of a surgeon.
What they saw in her bedroom convinced investigators
that Brandt had killed before. Thousands of hours have gone into trying
to determine how many times and where.
Their search has so far led to 26 unsolved slayings
in Florida, each occurring since Brandt moved to the state in 1973 and
each with at least some similarity to crimes investigators are certain
Brandt did commit. Add to that almost 400 cases of missing women also
being scrutinized, and veteran Seminole County sheriff's investigators
Rob Hemmert and Bob Jaynes still have much work to do.
"We're trying to get inside this guy's head," Jaynes
said, "and figure out how he progressed to this."
After remaining tight-lipped about their
investigation for a year, the investigators recently revealed additional
details of the slayings to the Orlando Sentinel. They are certain Brandt
killed at least two other times, in South Florida, and they hope their
investigation will ultimately resolve other murder cases.
The focus is on Florida, but investigators discovered
that Brandt made trips across the country as well as abroad.
An FBI computer program selected the 26 slayings that
are the focus of the investigation, some simply because the victims were
young women, but many because there were unusual aspects to the slaying,
such as mutilation.
Even with a growing knowledge of Brandt's whereabouts,
it is difficult to eliminate any of the 26 cases. The investigators
point to a 14-year-old girl slain in 1990 in Deerfield Beach. The
timeline doesn't put Brandt in Deerfield, but it puts him in the general
area, Jaynes said. "But, . . . Deerfield Beach puts him in the general
area of everything."
The two investigators know they will be working this
case at least another few months. How much longer than that depends
largely on what they learn when they sit down with a Florida Department
of Law Enforcement profiler this month.
Not a typical case
Murder-suicides are typically open-and-shut cases,
and, technically, the murder case of Michelle Jones and Teri Brandt is
closed. But from the minute the two veteran investigators walked into
Jones' house just south of Altamonte Springs the night of Sept. 15,
2004, they knew there was nothing typical about the case.
Neither had ever seen anything like the gruesome
"We had deputies getting sick," Jaynes said.
Teresa "Teri" Brandt's body was on a couch in the
living room. The 46-year-old woman had been stabbed seven or eight
times. Investigators think she was killed first.
"I don't think he would have risked being caught [killing
Jones] by his wife," Hemmert said.
From there, the investigators walked into Jones'
bedroom. They sensed immediately they were dealing with someone who had
dismembered a body before.
"You had to know what you were doing," Jaynes said.
Though Brandt had violently and repeatedly stabbed
his wife, he killed Jones, 37, with a single stab to the chest. Both
were killed with kitchen knives.
They think he then cut off Jones' head, positioning
it on the bed so it faced her body. He even took the time to brush the
hair away from her face.
He then cut off her breasts, her left leg and removed
her heart and other organs.
Hemmert and Jaynes think Brandt spent hours with
"It took him some time," Hemmert said. "It wasn't
something he did quickly."
When he was finished, he changed his clothes, leaving
his bloody ones on the floor by the bed. He left behind something else,
which at the time didn't make sense to the investigators: Victoria's
Secret bras and underwear, cut in half, that were scattered around the
Brandt, 47, walked into the garage and climbed a
stepladder. He tied a bedsheet around his neck and hanged himself.
13-year-old killed mother
News of the crime shocked Brandt's friends, neighbors
and family. Everyone told of a compassionate, friendly man nicknamed
Charlie who would do anything for anyone.
The first bombshell came when investigators learned
Brandt, when he was 13, fatally shot his mother and tried to kill his
father. It was a secret kept even from Brandt's two younger sisters, who
thought their mother died in a car crash.
Brandt spent a year in an Indiana mental institution
and was taken back by his father when he was released.
"I think that's when Charlie was born," Jaynes said.
Moving to Florida with his father, Charlie prospered,
eventually getting a job, marrying and settling in the Florida Keys.
Carl was never far away, however, fantasizing about
mutilating women, investigators said. He regularly visited Web sites
that dealt with autopsies, torture and the mutilation of women,
according to an analysis of his computer.
Teri Brandt's sister and brother-in-law, Mary Lou and
Bill Jones of Durham, N.C., are certain Teri never knew her husband's
dark side. Neither did the Joneses' daughter, Michelle.
They described the two women as more like sisters
than aunt and niece. Teri was 8 when Michelle was born.
"She was the proudest aunt," Mary Lou Jones recalled.
Michelle was a sales manager for the Golf Channel and
loved the outdoors. She lived alone, and Bill Jones said he talked to
her often about safety issues, except one: "I never, ever warned her to
keep an eye out for her uncle."
But after visiting the Brandts' home in Big Pine Key,
investigators found Michelle may have been Carl Brandt's ultimate
fantasy victim. Killing and cutting apart her body were things he may
have dreamed about for years, Hemmert said.
The investigator recalls walking into the Brandts'
bedroom and closing the door so he could look into a closet. There, on
the back of the door, was a female anatomy poster. The left side of the
body exposed the skeletal system.
"This was bizarre," Hemmert said. He remembered that
Jones' left leg had been cut off.
Elsewhere in the bedroom, they found an assortment of
books, with topics ranging from health and medicine to massage. They
also found a Victoria's Secret catalog addressed to Brandt.
A co-worker of Brandt's helped investigators make an
important connection. He told them Brandt often talked about his niece
and how beautiful the woman was. The man said he didn't know the woman's
name. Brandt referred to her only as "Victoria's Secret."
The Monroe County Sheriff's Office showed great
interest in Brandt once it learned details of the Central Florida
slayings. In 1989, the body of a former beauty queen, Sherry Perisho,
was found in a canal less than 1,000 feet from Brandt's home. Her throat
had been slashed and her heart removed.
There also was a similar slaying of a prostitute in
1995 in Miami. Darlene Toler's head and heart were never found.
Hemmert and Jaynes are convinced that both of those
women were slain by Brandt.
'No way out'
Investigators aren't sure Brandt intended to kill
Michelle Jones when he left Big Pine Key as the hurricane approached or
just found the opportunity too great to pass up.
Although he may have killed before without detection,
this time Carl Brandt could not hide behind the image of Charlie Brandt.
"He had no way out," Hemmert said. "He couldn't just
walk away from it and go home."
Carl Brandt visited his father, Herbert, in Ormond
Beach two days before the bodies of the Brandts and Jones were found.
Brandt's father told investigators that, as his son was leaving, " 'Charlie
hugged me like he's never hugged me before,' " Hemmert said.
Brandt looked at for 1989
By Alyson Matley
A Lower Keys man who killed his wife
and niece before hanging himself in his niece's Seminole County home
might be responsible for at least two unsolved murders in South Florida,
law enforcement officials says.
And this week, it came to light the man also killed his pregnant mother
31 years ago and tried to kill his father at the same time.
On Sept. 22, the Seminole County Sheriff's Office discovered the bodies
of Carl "Charlie" Brandt, 47, his wife Teresa "Teri" Brandt, 46, and
Michelle Lynn Jones, 37, in Jones' home in Maitland. Indications are
that the women were murdered and that Carl Brandt hanged himself,
according to authorities.
"The case in Seminole County has some real similarities to an unsolved
homicide in Monroe County," Monroe County Sheriff's Office spokeswoman
Becky Herrin said.
She said Sherry Perisho's body was found
in Pine Channel in 1989.
"She was a homeless woman who slept on
her dinghy," said Herrin. "Someone cut her abdomen open, cut her throat,
and cut her heart out."
The Brandts lived on Big Pine Key since 1988. They evacuated the Keys
during a hurricane evacuation that was issued by Monroe County officials
on Sept 16. Friends in the Keys became concerned when the couple did not
show up for work the following Tuesday and called their family members.
Carl Brandt worked for Lockheed Martin and Teresa Brandt worked for
Independent Paperboard Marketing.
Monroe County Sheriff Rick Roth said Carl Brandt is looking like "a good
suspect" in the Perisho killing.
"The degree of comparison seems to be that there is a strong indication
that he could be a good suspect in this case," said Roth. "It will be
difficult to get any hard evidence to prove that he did kill sherry
Perisho, though. If there are no souvenirs that he took or hard evidence
at the scene, it's difficult."
Roth said Miami-Dade County officials are also looking at a 1995
homicide that may show some similarities to the murders in Maitland.
Donald Eslinger, sheriff for Seminole County, said his department is not
yet ready to release details of the Maitland killings.
A story in the Orlando Sentinel earlier this week reported that Carl
Brandt shot his father and his pregnant mother in 1971. According to the
report, Brandt's mother died, but his father survived the bullet wounds
he received. Brandt was 13 at the time.
According to friends of Teresa Brandt, the couple had driven out to the
west coast of Florida to visit Carl Brandt's father the day before the
Gruesome Seminole Killings May
Be Linked To Decapitations
Authorities In Holland, Germany Seek Details About Fla. Crime
October 9, 2004
Investigators believe a man accused of
killing two women and then himself in Seminole County, Fla., last month
may have been a serial killer responsible for several decapitations,
according to Local 6 News.
Detectives said Carl Brandt stabbed his wife, Teresa, and his niece,
Michelle Jones before hanging himself inside a home on Hickory Drive.
Jones was reportedly mutilated and decapitated at the home.
Now, Brandt is the prime suspect in the death of a woman in Big Pine Key
who was beheaded and dismembered in the late 1980s.
Local 6 News has learned that authorities are also investigating Brandt
in connection with the disappearance of a 12-year-old Volusia County
girl whose head was found in 1978.
Law enforcement agencies from Germany and Holland have reportedly
contacted the Seminole County Sheriff's Office since information about
Brandt and the crime were posted in a FBI database. Specifics on the
inquiries from Europe were not available.
Police said an investigation of Brandt's computer found that he searched
Web sites depicting dead women and mutilation.
Local 6 News reported that Brandt shot and killed his pregnant mother
when he was 13 years old.
Girl's 1978 Murder Now Of
Interest To Investigators
October 8, 2004
OSTEEN, Fla. -- A Volusia County
family wants to know if their loved one was a victim of Carl Brandt's.
Carol Lynn Sullivan disappeared on an Osteen road 26 years ago, and the
way she was murdered has once again peaked the interest of not only
investigators, but her family, as well.
"Our family has waited for 20 years for an answer of some kind," says
the victim's father, Herbert Sullivan II.
Sullivan's 12-year-old daughter disappeared from her Osteen school bus
stop along a rural road 26 years ago. Only her skull was recovered,
found along a wooded Deltona roadside inside a rusted paint can. Her
murderer, still unknown, was never caught.
But now, she is just one of many cases getting attention by the task
force looking into Brandt's murderous past. They want to know if there's
"I think it's good, because we haven't had anything in all these years.
I mean, everything's been a deep silence for years. Nobody's ever given
us anything substantial to go on, until now," says Sullivan.
The murdered girl's file has been cold for nearly three decades, but the
nature of her murder, and the fact that Brandt, 21 years old at that
time, lived in the area, has the Seminole County Sheriff's Office asking
for Carol Lynn's files.
Sullivan's family is mixed, not sure what to think all these years later
except that this may be the start of the end of a painful 26 years.
"It never goes away. The fact is always there that it didn't turn out
well. It caused a rift in the family and it's been hard on everybody,"
These latest inquiries have reportedly been hard on Carl Brandt's family,
as well. Our calls to Brandt's father on Friday, who now lives in
Volusia County, went unanswered.
Killings spark more inquiries
Investigators in Germany and Holland seek details about the gruesome
slayings in Seminole County.
Deadly rage brewed in 'quiet kid'
By Gary Taylor - Orlando Sentinel
October 8, 2004
When homicide investigators entered
the grisly crime scene last month in south Seminole County, they
suspected immediately that 37-year-old Michelle Lynn Jones had died at
the hands of someone who had killed before.
Now, some of the unique circumstances of that crime -- the same things
that have led local investigators to possibly tie Jones' killer to two
South Florida slayings -- are drawing interest from homicide
investigators from across the country as well as in Europe.
The Seminole County Sheriff's Office released details Thursday about the
slayings of Jones and her aunt, Teresa Brandt, 46. The two women were
stabbed to death by Teresa's husband, Carl Brandt, 47. He then mutilated
and decapitated Jones, leaving behind a scene that one investigator said
appeared posed, before killing himself.
Several agencies have contacted the Seminole County Sheriff's Office
since details of the slayings were posted in an FBI database, Sheriff
Don Eslinger said. Those inquiries have come from as far away as Germany
and Holland. Details were not disclosed.
The key to figuring out whom Brandt might have killed before will be to
figure out all the places he has been for the past three decades,
"The most important element of this is establishing a timeline," he said.
Investigators plan to examine everything from credit-card and phone
records to bank accounts and Brandt's passport to determine when and
where he lived, worked and vacationed.
That work will begin in earnest today, when a task force meets for the
first time in Sanford. Eslinger has assigned two of his investigators to
work full time on the probe. Agents from the Florida Department of Law
Enforcement as well as investigators from Miami-Dade and Monroe counties
will participate on the task force.
"As a result of the crime scene, there was the immediate assumption that
this was not his first time," Eslinger said.
He pointed to the "surgical nature" of how Jones' body was mutilated and
dismembered after she was killed.
That is similar to the 1989 slaying of Sherry Perisho, whose body was
found floating just blocks from Brandt's house at Big Pine Key in the
The 39-year-old woman's throat had been cut and, investigators think,
the killer tried to decapitate her, but the knife did not sever her
vertebra. Also telling, Perisho's heart had been cut out. It was never
Another reopened case is the slaying of Darlene Toler, a 35-year-old
prostitute and mother of three. When her body was found the day after
Thanksgiving in 1995 in Miami-Dade County, her head and heart were
missing. They, too, were never found.
Yet another case that has been getting a fresh look is the slaying 26
years ago of 12-year-old Carol Lynn Sullivan in Volusia County. Although
Brandt lived in the area at the time, Volusia County investigators said
Thursday they have found nothing to link him to the crime.
Carol Lynn had disappeared from a bus stop in Osteen. Her skull was
found in a rusted paint can, but her body was never recovered.
"I have nothing," said her father, Herbert Sullivan. "She disappeared
off the face of the Earth -- just vanished -- and that was it.
"There is going to be no way to tell whether he was involved unless he
left something behind to indicate he had something to do with it," said
Sullivan, 60, of Clermont. "I always hoped something would come up, and
I thought maybe this [Brandt] was it."
In addition to releasing crime-scene reports and autopsy results
Thursday, the Sheriff's Office disclosed details of an analysis of
Brandt's personal computer. It showed he visited several Internet sites
with topics such as "erotic horror and death fetish erotica" and "drop
"It's like peering into his mind and seeing what he was thinking,"
Eslinger said. "You see disembowelment, you see decapitation and dead
women." A computer expert recovered information that investigators think
Brandt erased, probably to conceal from his wife, Eslinger said.
Investigators don't know in what order Brandt killed his wife and her
niece. Teresa Brandt's bloody body was found slumped on a living room
couch. Found wearing only a T-shirt, she had suffered multiple stab
wounds, including to her chest. Defensive wounds on her left hand
indicated she tried to fight off her husband's attack, according to the
The scene in the master bedroom was more gruesome. Brandt mutilated
Jones' decapitated body.
After killing the two women, Brandt changed into clean clothes before
hanging himself. He left his bloody clothes at the foot of Jones' bed.
Several knives thought used in the murders were found in the home.
Because he did not leave a suicide note, investigators speculate Brandt
hanged himself because this time, unlike in the other cases that are
being examined, he killed someone he knew.
"Maybe he realized there was no way out," Eslinger said. "Only he knows
But it was not the first time Brandt killed a family member. In 1971,
when he was 13 years old, Brandt went on a shooting rampage inside his
Fort Wayne, Ind., home, killing his pregnant mother, Ilse, and seriously
injuring his father, Herbert.
A grand jury decided he was not criminally responsible for his mother's
death and Indiana law at the time presumed children younger than 14
could not understand the consequences of their decisions. Brandt spent a
year in a mental-health facility, however, before being released to his
Police Describe Gruesome Scene
Police Say Brandt May Have Been Serial Killer
October 7, 2004
ALTAMONTE SPRINGS, Fla. -- A woman
killed last month in a Seminole County double murder-suicide was
mutilated after her death, according to the county's sheriff.
He said it was the final violent act from a man who may be responsible
for several murders in the past 33 years, WESH NewsChannel 2 reported.
The scene on Hickory Drive in Altamonte Springs was gruesome. Michelle
Jones and her aunt Teresa Brandt were both stabbed to death. The suspect,
Carl Brandt, was found hanging in the garage.
Investigators now say Brandt surgically dismantled his niece. Her body
was decapitated and the head was posed on the bed with other body parts,
including her heart and breasts.
"What struck us immediately is that he's done this before. This is
repetitive," said Seminole County Sheriff Don Eslinger.
Brandt first killed as a 13-year-old in Fort Wayne, Ind. He shot his
mother to death and shot his father, too, but his father recovered.
After a year of mental health treatment, Carl moved with his family to
Carl Brandt moved to Big Pine Key in the late 80s. A woman living near
his home was killed, beheaded and dismembered. Brandt is now a prime
"There are a lot of missing persons and unsolved homicides in this
country and in Europe with a similar M.O," Eslinger said.
In 1978, a 12-year-old Volusia County girl disappeared and only her head
was found. Brandt had graduated from Daytona Beach Community College and
was working in Flagler County at the time. Eslinger said Brandt's
possible ties to that case are thin at best.
He said it's important to make comparisons but only to close cases where
Brandt can be tied to the case with strong evidence. He believes the
case in the Keys seems likely to involve him.
It's a tough case for everyone, Brandt's family included.
"You find out your brother's a possible serial killer," Eslinger said.
NewsChannel 2 reporter Dave McDaniel asked, "That's what you believe,
"Yes, I do. There's little doubt," Eslinger said.
A check of Brandt's computer found he searched Web sites depicting dead
women and mutilation.
"His obsession with dismemberment and death, clearly he was heavily
involved in deviant fantasies," Eslinger said. "He lived two lives, this
guy. He was friendly, shy, timid. He doted on his wife."
Seminole killer was living out
Carl Brandt's computer reveals morbid tastes
By Gary Taylor - Orlando Sentinel
October 7, 2004
Carl Brandt apparently fantasized
about mutilated and dismembered bodies and, in a final act before
killing himself, lived out his fantasies on his wife's niece, including
cutting out her heart, according to records released today by the
Seminole County Sheriff's Office.
Brandt, 47, hanged himself after stabbing to death his wife, Teresa
Brandt, and her niece, Michelle Lynn Jones. All three bodies were found
Sept. 15 in Jones' Altamonte Springs-area home, where the Brandts, who
lived in the Florida Keys, had sought refuge from Hurricane Ivan.
An analysis of Brandt's computer, seized from his home in Big Pine Key,
revealed that he visited several Internet sites with topics such as "erotic
horror and death fetish erotica" and "drop dead gorgeous."
Jones' mutilated body was found on her bed. She had died of a stab wound
that penetrated her heart, aorta and vertebra, according to an autopsy
report. After she was dead, Brandt cut out several organs, including her
heart and liver, and cut off several body parts, including her head and
Teresa Brandt's bloody body was found slumped on a living room couch.
She had suffered multiple stab wounds, including to the chest, and
defensive wounds on her left hand indicated she tried to fight off her
That Jones' heart was removed has led investigators to suspect Brandt
may be responsible for other killings, including at least two in South
Florida in which the victims' hearts also were cut out. One of those
occurred a short distance from Brandt's home. The other was in Miami.
Investigators are establishing a timeline of Brandt's life, including
where he lived, worked and visited, to see if he may be linked to other
unsolved killings, Seminole Sheriff Don Eslinger said.
As a 13-year-old, Brandt shot to death his pregnant mother and seriously
injured his father in their Fort Wayne, Ind., home. The father, Herbert
Brandt, now lives in Volusia County, where Carl Brandt also lived for
several years and graduated from Seabreze High School and Daytona Beach