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Candidate Hit by Deaths of 2 Is Voted to Post

November 05, 1986|United Press International

MIAMI — Democratic attorney general candidate Bob Butterworth, reeling from the deaths of his teen-age son and ex-wife, defeated Republican state lawmaker Jim Watt on Tuesday to win Florida's top law enforcement job.

Incomplete returns showed Butterworth leading with 58% of the vote.

Butterworth, a former Broward County sheriff, judge and prosecutor, went into seclusion after learning of the deaths Monday night of his son, Bobby, 16, and ex-wife, Saundra, 43. Police said Mrs. Butterworth shot the boy four times and herself once.

Believed Murder-Suicide

"It appears to be a murder-suicide," police spokesman Juan Santos said.

Police, responding to a call from a "hysterical" woman, found the body of the youth in his mother's 1982 Datsun, parked at a curb, and the body of Mrs. Butterworth beside a telephone booth.

Bobby Butterworth had been shot three times in the chest and once in the neck and his mother once in the head. A .38-caliber gun was found beside Mrs. Butterworth, police said.

"She evidently picked him up from school, which was a routine event, and she drove to Miami, where she stopped, made the call, shot her son and then shot herself," police spokeswoman Cori Zywotow said.

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