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Investigators: Hernando County man used hidden gun to kill estranged wife, her boyfriend in Pasco County

HERNANDO COUNTY — Michael McAdams drove down the rural road about 10 that night, to the house where he used to live on the northern end of Darby, just past the Pasco County line.

Once there, investigators say he got into an argument with his estranged wife, 46-year-old Lynda McAdams, and her boyfriend, William R. Andrews, 37.

At some point, Michael McAdams retrieved a handgun hidden under a milk pot just outside the front door and fired a shot at Andrews, according to the Pasco County Sheriff's Office.

The bullet missed, but others didn't, the sheriff's office said.

Michael McAdams, 47, shot and killed Andrews, then his wife, who wanted a divorce. Then he tried to clean up the crime scene and buried the bodies in a rural area in Hernando County near Peaceful Avenue and Hurricane Drive in Spring Hill. Sheriff's investigators say they know this because he told them.

Michael McAdams, a carpenter for the Pinellas School Board whose hobby was catching snakes, was familiar with such remote areas of Hernando, authorities said.

Detectives spent the weekend piecing together four crime scenes, removing the bodies and listening to a confession from Michael McAdams.

Meanwhile, relatives and friends were left to wonder why. Authorities have speculated that the impending divorce was a motive for the Oct. 18 killings.

"I've met Mike, and I've been over there," said neighbor Marjorie Constantine, 50. "He seemed like a nice gentleman. I was pretty shocked. It's hard to believe someone you know has been murdered."

Lynda and Michael McAdams were married for 24 years and owned the house at 17928 Palamino Lake Drive where authorities say the killings occurred. The couple have two daughters.

The Sheriff's Office said it didn't have any record of domestic violence calls to the house.

After the couple split, Michael McAdams moved out to a place in Hernando County.

It's unclear when Lynda McAdams and William Andrews began dating. The two worked together at Bic Graphics in Clearwater.

Andrews of New Port Richey was last seen at noon Sunday by his father. He was reported missing on Tuesday.

Lynda McAdams was last heard from at 9:30 p.m. Sunday when she spoke to one of her daughters on the phone. She was reported missing Wednesday.

The same day, a Pasco detective searched her home and found blood on the walls, floor, porch landing and some clothing, according to a report from the Pasco Sheriff's Office.

A bullet casing was found embedded in a wall near the top of a bedroom door frame. It was the shot McAdams fired at Andrews that missed, the report said.

On Thursday, Pasco detectives searched Michael McAdams' home at 5442 Glover Drive in Spring Hill, the report said.

Bloodstains were found on a pair of shorts, and detectives found ammunition and a portion of a broken cell phone, the report said.

On Friday, Pasco detectives went to speak to Michael McAdams' parents at their Hernando County home.

McAdams hired attorney Robert Whittel to represent him.

McAdams was taken into custody in Hernando and questioned by Pasco detectives, who said he confessed to the killings.

Whittel said when an attorney from his office went to the Sheriff's Office to see McAdams, officials there refused to let the attorney see him.

Whittel said he faxed a letter to both Pasco Sheriff Bob White and Hernando Sheriff Richard Nugent on Friday, saying his client's rights were violated.

"We are going to evaluate what it is they (detectives) made him say, and what may be true," Whittel said Saturday. "They wanted him to tell them what they wanted to hear. Otherwise, they would have had no objection to having his attorney there to sit with him."

Michael McAdams is being held without bail on two counts of first-degree murder at the Land O'Lakes jail.

Back on Palamino Lake Drive, Constantine, Lynda McAdams' neighbor, said she will miss horseback riding along he Withlacoochee River with her friend.

Lynda McAdams owned three horses, and often rode one named Cinnamon, she said.

"Who would think?" she said Saturday, choking up. "It's not something I would think anyone would have done to her."

Camille C. Spencer can be reached at cspencer@sptimes.com or (813) 909-4609.

Investigators: Hernando County man used hidden gun to kill estranged wife, her boyfriend in Pasco County 10/24/09 [Last modified: Sunday, October 25, 2009 12:09am]
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