HOLLYWOOD (CBS4) – A Hollywood man accused of murdering his mother will stay behind bars.
During a hearing on Thursday, a judge denied bond for 29-year old Jason Kertesz who is charged with first degree murder.
According to the arrest affidavit, Kertesz’s mother 62-year-old Irene Kertesz was found dead in her home in 2400 block of NW 57th Way at around 9 p.m. on July 30th. Her husband, John, discovered her body.
John Kertesz told detectives that when he left home that day around 1 p.m. to go to the Seminole Hard Rock Casino with a friend, his wife and Jason were there. After dropping his friend off at his Plantation home around 5:30 p.m., Kertesz said he drove to Hollywood to have dinner with another friend.
During this time, Kertesz said he got a call from Jason on his wife’s phone wanting to know if he was going to be home for dinner. When asked where Irene was, Jason reportedly said she was napping. When the call ended John Kertesz thought it was unusual that his wife was taking a nap at that hour and that Jason had called on her phone. Kertesz said his dinner plans got canceled and when he arrived home around 7 p.m. he noticed his wife’s car was gone.
Kertesz said when he tried to reach her on her cell phone, it went to voice mail and then Jason called back. When asked where Irene was, Jason reportedly said that his mother must have gone out.
When John Kertesz dialed his wife’s phone again an hour later, Jason answered. It was then, he told detectives, that he got worried and began to search the house. He said he found his wife’s body in a locked second bedroom which they had used as an office; she had severe head wounds. He said he called police and told the officers he thought Jason had killed her.
John Kertesz said his son had a drug problem and had stolen their car from them to give to a man he had owed money. He had also stolen money and valuables from them in the past. Kertesz went on to tell the officers that his wife’s credit and ATM cards were missing from her purse which was in the house. He added that that Jason had bought crack cocaine in the Liberia area and he may have gone there.
During a search of the house, police found a softball bat in the master bathroom’s bathtub. According to the arrest affidavit, it appeared to have been recently cleaned and the bathroom floor was still wet. Traces of blood were reportedly found around the tub and on the bat after they were processed. The bat, it turned out, belonged to Kertesz’s other son Sean. Traces of blood were also found in a bedroom and bathroom used by Jason, according to the report.
A check of Irene Kertesz’s cell phone records showed it was used to call the Checker Cab. The cab company said their driver picked up a younger male twice; once to take him to a budget motel and the other time to a gas station on Federal Highway where he used an ATM machine.
Hollywood police obtained the surveillance video which showed Kertesz using his mother’s ATM card at a gas station not long after she died. The tape shows Kertesz getting out of the taxi and using the ATM. Officials said Kertesz took out an undisclosed amount of cash using a credit card belonging to his mother.
During the course of their investigation, police discovered there was an arrest warrant out for Jason Kertesz for probation violation. According to court records, Kertesz moved away from a court-mandated sobriety house in Pompano Beach earlier this year without telling his probation officer.
On August 1st, someone called Crime Stoppers to say they saw an agitated Kertesz getting into a Checker Cab. Police called the cab company and were tracked the taxi down in Aventura. According to the report, Kertesz got nervous and jumped out of the cab near Aventura Hospital and took off on foot. Hollywood police contacted Aventura police who took Kertesz into custody a short time later.
During questioning, Ray Frazier, an acquaintance of Kertesz said that Jason showed up at his apartment with a pocketful of cash and his mother’s rental car. Frazier said the two went for a ride and over heard the conversations Jason had with John Kertesz in which he said his mother was napping and then later had gone out.
Frazier reportedly told police they dumped the car in an alley way off Polk Street and when he asked Kertesz why he killed his mother, Jason replied “I just snapped.”
A check of state records reveals that Jason Kertesz has been arrested numerous times since 2000.
CBS4 cameras captured one of his arrests in March 2006 when Kertesz led police on a chase through the streets of Miami-Dade and Broward. He was arrested for grand theft of a motor vehicle and aggravated fleeing and eluding. He was sentenced to four years in prison.
Records show he left prison in January 2010.
Irene Kertesz worked as a secretary at St. Lawrence Catholic School in North Miami Beach for the last 12 years.