Marine Vet Allegedly Stabbed Wife 28 Times, Killed Son Who Was Found Floating In Pool

A Florida man was arrested last week and accused of killing his wife ― who had allegedly discovered he’d had an extramarital affair ― and their toddler.

Jean Carlos Aponte, 40, was charged with two counts of premeditated murder in connection to the death of his wife, identified in a fundraiser as 38-year-old Sara Gama, and their 3-year-old-son, Ethan Aponte de Gama, according to an affidavit obtained by HuffPost. Aponte’s attorney did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Gama’s father called 911 on March 26 to report Ethan missing. He said he found his daughter dead and covered in blood on the kitchen floor of her home in Plantation, Florida, according to the affidavit. As Gama’s father continued into the primary bedroom, he found Aponte unconscious on the floor.

Sara Gama and Ethan Aponte de Gama.
Sara Gama and Ethan Aponte de Gama.

Officers and fire rescue responded to the victim’s home, where they met with Gama’s father and mother holding their 4-month-old grandson.

Responding officers examined Gama’s body and noted in the affidavit that she was “cold to the touch and had apparent stab wounds and slashes to her neck area.” Aponte was alive, but “had labored breathing” and would not respond to any verbal commands or physical touch.

Behind the home, responding officers found Ethan facedown in the pool. As they attempted to administer aid, they noticed the boy’s body had stab wounds and was already in “full rigor mortis,” according to the affidavit.

Ethan and his mother were pronounced dead at the scene. Aponte was taken to a local hospital, where staff stabilized his condition.

Medical examiners found the toddler had sustained at least four deep stab wounds to the front neck area and a defensive wound to his hand, according to the affidavit. His cause of death was determined to be sharp-force injury and drowning.

Gama sustained 28 stab wounds all over her body, including one to her neck, which appeared to have been torn open, according to the affidavit. Her cause of death was determined to be sharp-force injury.

Medical staff told detectives that Aponte had tried to overdose on prescription medication prior to his arrival at the hospital.

Gama’s father told detectives that he’d last spoken with his daughter the day before, and that “everyone was in good spirits and happy.” He and his wife went to their daughter’s home that day to check on her because their calls had gone unanswered.

When they arrived, Gama’s father said, the door was locked and no one answered the doorbell, according to the affidavit. He told detectives he could hear the family’s dog barking and their 4-month-old crying “uncontrollably.”

The victim’s father said he was unaware of any marital issues, but noted that Aponte had suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder stemming from his deployment in Iraq during his service in the Marine Corps.

The affidavit cited surveillance footage from the morning of March 26 in which a woman could be heard having a heated argument about custody and terms of a possible divorce.

Almost 40 minutes later, a “scared/frantic sounding” child could be heard screaming, then coughing, according to the affidavit.

Citing messages between Aponte and Gama on Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp, investigators said the only topic Aponte and Gama had discussed via those channels since March 25 was Aponte allegedly cheating on her.

“So let me ask you ― when you went to Colombia for your dads funeral what happened there,” Gama wrote to Aponte in one message. “Because there are tons of escorts there.”

Aponte wrote to her, “I understand I broke ur trust,” according to the affidavit.

Forensic investigators also said that Gama made various searches suggesting she was considering divorce, including “just found out my husband cheated on me years ago” and “how does alimony work in Florida.”

Officers said Aponte was in and out of sleep in the hospital, but they alleged that when he woke up, he had several “spontaneous utterances and statements,” which included “I’m sorry” and “I did it.”

Need help? In the U.S., call 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) for the National Domestic Violence Hotline.

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