BOZEMAN — A Florida man suspected of shooting the mother of a young genius before being shot to death by Montana law enforcement officers had been in the Bozeman area for up to two months.
The Bozeman Chronicle learned that Thomas Kyros, 81, of New Port Richey, Fla., had been living at the Days Inn in Bozeman since mid-November and that he may have tried to contact 19-year-old Promethea Pythaitha more than once.
Kyros is suspected of shooting Georgia Smith at her house south of Livingston on Monday afternoon. Smith is the mother of Pythaitha, who at 14 became the youngest person to graduate from Montana State University. Smith is hospitalized in stable condition, officials said. They have not released any other information about her injuries or condition.
Park County Attorney Brett Linneweber said Friday said that authorities, including Coroner Al Jenkins, completed an autopsy of Kyros' body in Billings on Thursday. The autopsy's findings were not available Friday because a written report of the autopsy hasn't been completed, Linneweber said.
"I've been advised that, based on what had been reported, there was nothing unexpected," Linneweber said. "Everything so far is consistent."
The investigation, headed up by four agents from the Montana Department of Justice's Division of Criminal Investigation (DCI), is moving along smoothly and authorities are now compiling and analyzing evidence and information in an effort to determine where to go next.
"It's coming along very well," Linneweber said. "I'd like to commend DCI. They have been extremely thorough."
The Chronicle has reported that after Kyros learned of Pythaitha's academic abilities he contacted her and "adopted" her as his granddaughter. He claimed to have sent her $17,000. But after a time, his gifts were rejected and his offers to pay her tuition were ignored. He blamed Smith and called the newspaper demanding investigative reporting into Smith's activities.
Kyros left Florida in mid-November. He told his neighbor, Rosalie Maxey, that he was going to Montana, he had some friends there and he didn't know when he was going to be back.
It was odd for the ailing man to leave his house, said Maxey, who has lived next door to Kyros since 1986.
"Never has he left before," she said. "Never, ever."
About a week ago, Kyros called the newspaper and left a message saying Pythaitha and Smith would be in court and the newspaper should be there to cover it.