The widow of a former Maricopa County prosecutor shot and killed two women before killing herself during a holiday party on Christmas Eve, police said.
According to the Phoenix, David DeNitto, 47 — the ex-husband of Alistair Adel, who died in 2022, a month after resigning as county attorney — was arrested on North Second Street around 11:30 p.m. Sunday. He was found dead in a home near the 5700 block. Police station. The home is located near the intersection of Central Avenue and Bethany Home Road.
Police said De Nitto shot and killed two women, Cynthia Domini, 83, and Mary Alice Cash, 47, before killing himself from his own gunshot wounds. Both women were pronounced dead at a local hospital.
Police said De Nitto shot and killed the women during an argument at his home. He and Cash were in a relationship, but police have not described their relationship. Detectives are investigating the circumstances that led to the murder-suicide.
Adel's successor, County Attorney Rachel Mitchell, called the death a “tragedy” in a statement Monday.
“It's impossible to understand a tragedy like this,” Mitchell said. “Words cannot adequately express the flood of grief. We ask the community to join us in praying for the affected families, especially Alistair’s children. We ask that you surround the family with love, kindness and respect for their need for privacy.”
Adele, 45, passed away on April 30, 2022, due to a series of health complications. In 2020, she fell at her home and hit her head, sustaining a brain injury. In 2021, Adele sought treatment at a rehab facility after she suffered from an eating disorder and alcohol abuse.
De Nitto said in April 2022 that she was “completely heartbroken” by Adele's death. Adele is survived by De Nitto and two children.
In a statement released after Adele's death, De Nitto said: “We would have celebrated our 20th wedding anniversary in May of this year.” “My family and I are completely heartbroken by this unimaginable loss. I am so proud to call Alistair my wife and mother.”
Adell was appointed county attorney in October 2019, making her the first woman to lead the Maricopa County Attorney's Office, one of the largest prosecutorial agencies in the country. Adel was elected to a full term in the November 2020 county attorney election, where she prosecuted gang and drug crimes in the office from 2004 to 2011.
Her nearly three-year tenure as county attorney was marked by controversy over trumped-up charges against Black Lives Matter activists and questions about her ability to lead the department. Mr. Adel retired from office on March 25, 2022.