Entries in Tyler Hadley (3)


Hammer Murder Suspect Told Pal He Would Kill Parents, Affidavit States

St. Lucie Sheriff's Office(PORT SAINT LUCIE, Fla.) -- The teenager who allegedly used a claw hammer to bludgeon his parents to death twice confided in his best friend that he intended to kill them, but the friend dismissed the comments because the teen had made such threats before, according a police affidavit released Wednesday.

The suspect also told a friend that he attacked his parents, Mary Jo and Blake Hadley, after taking a large dose of the drug ecstasy.

Details of the double murder emerged as Tyler Hadley's attorney, Mark Harllee, filed a not-guilty plea. Hadley is currently being held at the Port Lucie County jail in Florida.

Hadley has confessed to killing his parents, police said. He then threw a boozy party for about 60 friends while the bodies of his parents laid in a locked bedroom.

During the party, Hadley pulled his best friend Michael Mandell aside and told him that he killed his mother and father, according to the affidavit.

When Mandell didn't believe Hadley, "Tyler pointed out both his parent's vehicles were still in the driveway," according to the affidavit.

He wasn't convinced until Hadley took Mandell to the master bedroom where Mandell saw a man's leg and recognized Blake Hadley's shoe. Hadley told his friend, whom he has known since they were 8, that "he stood behind his mother while she was at the computer and thought about killing her for about five minutes. Then he decided to strike his mother in the back of the head with a hammer."

After the initial blows, Hadley said that his mother turned to him and asked, "Why?" Hadley's father came out of the bedroom when he heard his wife scream. "Tyler told MM [Mandell] that he and his father stared into each other's eyes for a minute. Tyler said he then went after his father and murdered him," the affidavit states.

Mandell said Hadley took his parents' cellphones and put them in his bedroom so that they couldn't get to them and took one of their credit cards so he would have access to their money.

It took the teenager about three hours to mop up the blood, he allegedly told Mandell, before his friends arrived for the party.

According to the affidavit Mandell told police Hadley was going to take 10 Percocet pills and kill himself, but the police showed up instead.

It was Mandell who called police to alert them to the murders. When they arrived at the home they found Hadley glassy eyed and talkative. When the boy said they couldn't come in, the police entered anyway on the possibility that someone inside could be in danger.

The officers found the parents' bodies in a locked bedroom beneath furniture that had been piled into there from other rooms in the house, the affidavit said.

Mandell told television station WPTV that Hadley had taken three ecstasy pills and that he didn't believe his friend's confession until he saw the father's body.

Dr. Julie Holland, an assistant professor of psychiatry at New York University who has studied ecstasy, said, "It is absolutely not known to cause violent reactions."

The tablets Hadley allegedly took may have been sold as ecstasy, Holland said, but could have been anything.

Given that Hadley had talked about murdering his parents in the past, "He could have been having a first episode psychotic break that was made worse or triggered by ecstasy," according to Dr. Cindy Kuhn, a neuropharmacologist at the Duke University Medical Center.

Most people assume ecstasy causes euphoria, explained Kuhn. Although that is true in small doses, she said, larger doses -- such as the three pills Hadley allegedly took -- can produce high blood pressure and increased anxiety.

Hadley's age, 17, is a "prime age to go crazy," Holland said. In the late teens and early 20s the brain is very vulnerable, she explained. That's typically when people develop schizophrenia or manic depression, she said.

In patients with schizophrenia, for example, a drug like ecstasy can trigger an episode, Kuhn said. It's unknown if Hadley suffered from psychological illness.

Port Saint Lucie police spokesman Tom Nichols could not disclose if investigators found drugs in the Hadley home.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Hammer Murder: Fla. Teen Charged as Adult Can't Get Death Penalty

St. Lucie Sheriff's Office(PORT SAINT LUCIE, Fla.) -- The Florida teen accused of killing his parents with a hammer and then partying with his friends was charged Tuesday as an adult but is not eligible for the death penalty because of his age, prosecutors say.

Life in prison without parole is "the only viable option that remains on the table for him," said chief assistant state attorney Thomas Bakkedahl. "While it may not be satisfying to me, that's all we've got."

Tyler Hadley, 17, was charged Tuesday with two counts of second-degree murder, which will keep him in jail while the state attorney's office assembles a grand jury, the only way to prosecute Hadley for first-degree murder. In Florida, first-degree murder carries two punishments: the death penalty for people 18 or older, or life in prison without parole.

Prosecutors made the decision to seek first-degree murder charges against Hadley after seeing the damage done to the bodies of Hadley's parents during the medical examiner's autopsy.

Jurors will likely meet in August, Bakkedahl said.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Teen Allegedly Kills Parents with Hammer, Then Parties

Comstock/Thinkstock(PORT SAINT LUCIE, Fla.) -- A Florida teenager accused of killing his parents with a hammer and partying afterward with more than 40 friends has been charged with first-degree murder. He is being held without bail.

Police say 17-year-old Tyler Hadley used a 22-inch framing hammer to kill his parents, Mary Jo Hadley and Blake Maurice Hadley, then covered up their bodies and drank beer with his friends.

Tyler had invited his friends to come over Saturday, police said, posting a message on Facebook around 1:30 in the afternoon.

Later that night, around 10 p.m., between 40 to 60 friends arrived at the house. Neighbors complained about noise from the party, so police sent a patrol car to the neighborhood around 2:30 a.m. but didn't notice anything unusual.

Then, hours later, they received an anonymous tip that Tyler had killed his parents.

When police showed up at the Hadley home around 4:20 a.m. they found "beer cups lying around the house," and Tyler appeared "nervous and panicky," according to Port Saint Lucie Police Capt. Don Kryak.

At that point, Kryak said, the party had already broken up. Police found Mary Jo Hadley, 47, and Blake Hadley, 54, in the master bedroom covered in household items, including "books, files and towels."

Police said it looked like a deliberate attempt to hide the bodies.

Port Saint Lucie police spokesman Tom Nichols said police found the hammer between the two bodies, and that it had been used on the couple's heads and torsos.

Although the police were still awaiting autopsy results, they "can say for certain" both parents were killed before the party began.

Police say they believe Tyler acted alone, and that he'd likely be tried as an adult. A motive for Tyler's alleged actions remains unclear.

There was "nothing to lead us to believe it was a rage issue of any sort," Kryak said.

Neighbor Charlene Moses said she's lived on the same block as the Hadleys for 15 years and remembers Tyler and his older brother stopping by during Halloween. She said they were always polite.

Blake Hadley, 54, worked for the Florida Power & Light Company for almost 30 years as an engineer, his father, Maurice Hadley, told ABC News. He described his son as a man who was "proud of his two sons," affectionately describing him as a "gentle giant" because he was six feet four inches and "always jolly."

His wife, Mary Jo Hadley, 47, worked as a first-grade teacher at Village Green Environmental Studies School.

A spokesperson from the St. Lucie County School district was not available for immediate comment.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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