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Crime & Courts

Phoenix man kills wife over fear she contracted HIV from him, then kills son, police say


Eugene Maraventano allegedly killed his wife and his adult son after fearing she contracted HIV from him

A man charged with killing his wife and adult son acknowledged fatally stabbing both, saying he feared he may have contracted the AIDS virus from prostitutes years earlier and given it to his wife, police said.

Eugene Maraventano, 63, told a detective that he stabbed his wife, Janet, with a 14-inch kitchen knife while she was asleep in their bedroom and then killed Bryan Maraventano, 27, police said Monday in a probable cause statement filed in court.

Maraventano said he frequented prostitutes while working in New York and feared he might have given the virus to his wife, who recently had tests for cancer, which were negative, the statement said. The document didn't say whether either Maraventano or his wife was positive for HIV.

"I killed my wife and I killed my son; I can't kill myself," Maraventano told a 911 dispatcher, according to court documents obtained by The Phoenix New Times.

Police said Maraventano told detectives he decided to kill his son, who was stabbed twice when he opened his bedroom door, because he didn't know how the son would cope without his parents.

Maraventano said he thought the son was mentally disabled because he didn't have a girlfriend, couldn't get a job and played video games all day, the statement said.

Maraventano called 911 on Saturday to report the killings, which police said were committed Thursday.

In the meantime, Maraventano said he tried several times to kill himself but failed, police said.

Click for more from The Phoenix New Times

The Associated Press contributed to this report

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