MIAMI (CBSMiami) — Sam Del Brocco was a man who constantly re-invented himself, spending years as an entertainer singing about dreams.
In his later years, that dream led him to a very successful marketing business in the Washington D.C. area, a great circle of friends and to the arms of Jan Shafer, the woman he shared his life with for more than 30 years.
That whole life came crashing down in September of 2010, when Sam was found savagely murdered inside his beach-side condo in Pompano Beach.
On Thursday, police filed a second degree charge for Del Brocco’s death against 26-year old John Snavely.
Snavely is currently in jail in St. Lucie County for violating his probation. Investigators say Snavley is a porn star, in both gay and straight movies, as well as an exotic dancer. He was linked to the crime by evidence found on the scene.
“Physical evidence collected by our crime scene detectives in 2010 ultimately is what lead to the arrest of Mr. Snavely,” said BSO Homicide Detective John Curcio. “It was not only inside the crime scene but in the victim’s vehicle as well.”
Broward Sheriff’s investigators said there was a violent struggle between Del Brocco and his killer.
At the time Del Brocco’s friends were shocked and sickened by the ruthless violence.
“To realize that the whole fight may have taken place on three different floors, it’s a horrific thing. Someone was bound and determined that they were not going to leave until Sam was dead,” said Greg Czarnecki, a friend of Del Brocco. Detective are still searching for a motive.
“We believe that there was some kind of encounter between the two of them that ultimately lead to him being stabbed to death,” said Det. Curcio. “Speculating on what that altercation may have started over, we’re not 100% sure of at this time. We believe it possibly is over money.”
Investigators said Del Brocco lived in Virginia but took frequent trips to his residence in Pompano Beach. He was the President and CEO of PCI Communications, a communications and strategy company headquartered in Washington, D.C.
During the course of their investigation, detectives discovered that Del Brocco likely led a secret life while he was here.
Just hours before Del Brocco was murdered he ate dinner at Kelly’s Landing on Cordova, just off the 17th Street Causeway in Fort Lauderdale. About 8:30, the night of September 11, 2010, investigators believe he drove north on Federal Highway. Detectives said it’s possible he stopped at Johnny’s, a gay bar on Broward Blvd. or that he could have driven to the Galt Ocean Mile area and popped in at Dudes, another gay bar.
About 12:30 on the morning of September 12, deputies believe Del Brocco arrived back at his upscale beach condo and he was not alone. Broward sheriff’s investigators believe that man was Snavely.
Around 9 p.m. on the same day, Shafer called the sheriff’s office and asked if they could check on Del Brocco because she hadn’t heard from him all day. That’s when deputies discovered Del Brocco’s bloody body in the condo’s master bedroom.
An autopsy performed by the Broward Medical Examiner’s Office confirmed that Del Brocco had been killed as a result of multiple stab wounds.