FT. PIERCE TRIBUNE
Man allegedly told son to kill
Simmonsen staff writer
A Stuart man is on trial for solicitation to commit
murder and child abuse after being accused of trying
to get his son to kill the boy's mother. FORT PIERCE
-- Edward Munao often talked to his son on
the phone, but one particular conversation is at the
heart of prosecutors' case against him.
"That defendant told his 6-year-old son to go in the
kitchen, grab a knife and kill his mother,"
Assistant State Attorney Daryl Krauza told jurors
during his opening statement Tuesday.
Munao, 39, of Stuart, is on trial for
solicitation to commit murder and child abuse after
being accused of trying to get his son to kill the
boy's mother, Jodi Walsh, in November 2003.
Walsh and Munao had two children. They
split up in 1999 and Walsh took custody of
Over a period of time, Munao encouraged the
boy to hit and kick his mother and constantly
insulted and degraded her, Krauza said. The boy has
oppositional defiant disorder, which was exacerbated
by Munao's influence and led the child to
throw tantrums that included curse words, hitting
and biting, Krauza said.
Everything culminated when Munao allegedly
told the boy to kill his mother, a conversation
overheard by Walsh on a speakerphone, Krauza
During a taped conversation the next day, Munao
said, "I told you what to do. Do you need me to come
over there and kill her for you?"
Defense attorney Linda Capobianco said Walsh
and Munao had a less-than-perfect
relationship and the pair disagreed on Walsh's
use of corporal punishment, among other things.
Walsh allowed the boy to frequently call
Munao because it calmed him down, she said
during her opening statement.
"There are going to be some ugly allegations and
they are just that -- allegations," she said.
Munao plans to take the stand in his defense,
Among the witnesses Tuesday were Walsh, 35,
who testified her son frequently acted out against
her and hit her at Munao's urging. She was
granted a domestic violence injunction against
Munao in July 2003 and took her son to a
psychologist for treatment, she said.
A principal at the boy's school testified the child
hit students and teachers, but has been better
behaved since his father's arrest.
An investigator with the state Department of
Children & Families testified she investigated
Walsh twice after complaints from Munao
and did not find any evidence of child abuse.
Prosecutors will continue presenting their case
today and testimony could stretch into Thursday.
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