Coronavirus: Man accused of killing estranged wife before claiming she had Covid-19

A Florida man has been accused of killing his estranged wife and trying to cover up her disappearance by claiming she was severely ill with the coronavirus.

David Anthony, 48, of Jupiter, Florida, was arrested last week on second-degree murder and kidnapping charges after being found by police in Las Cruces, New Mexico.

His arrest came after a friend of his wife, 51-year-old Gretchen Anthony, reported receiving strange text messages from the missing woman in March saying she had contracted Covid-19.

According to the messages, Mrs Anthony’s case was “acute” and meant she was being held by the “CDC” after being checked out at Jupiter Medical Centre, WPEC reported.

But police said the woman had not been at a medical centre or made any insurance claims relating to Covid-19 treatments.

An investigation turned towards Mr Anthony, who was still married to his wife but the woman filed for divorce on 28 February.

Vocabulary used by the husband mirrored that of the coronavirus text messages allegedly sent by Ms Anthony, according to the police report.

The report said an officer had also visited Mrs Anthony’s home but discovered no one was home. When asking neighbours about any suspicious activity, one person said she heard a “blood-curdling scream” and a woman saying “No. No it hurts” in a location near Mrs Anthony’s garage or patio area of her home on 21 March.

Another neighbour also told officers they heard a scream that morning and saw what they thought was Mr Anthony’s truck outside the home at the time.

During a search of the home, a large spot in the garage that appeared to be stained with bleach and towels in the home’s washing machine with a “reddish substance” on them that looked like blood were found, police said.

“As the investigation progressed and further evidence collected, it is believed David E. Anthony is responsible for her disappearance and related homicide,” the Jupiter Police Department said in a statement on Facebook.

Mr Anthony was arrested in New Mexico on 31 March, where he’s remained until he’s extracted to Florida.

Ms Anthony’s body has yet to be found.

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