Prostitute Murdered Google Exec on Yacht in California: Police
A woman police describe as a high-end prostitute has been arrested on suspicion of murder after allegedly injecting heroin into a tech executive on his yacht in Santa Cruz and leaving him to die when he overdosed.
The suspect, Alix Catherine Tichelman, was charged with seven crimes, including manslaughter, at the Santa Cruz County Court on Wednesday.
She has been appointed a public defender and her bail has been set at $1.5 million. She will wait a week before entering plea.
The Santa Cruz Sentinel reported Tuesday that surveillance video from the boat shows 51-year-old Forrest Timothy Hayes losing consciousness.
Investigators said the 26-year-old from Georgia made no effort to help Hayes, and instead gathered her belongings and even gulped a glass of wine before leaving.
Hayes's body was discovered the next day.
Tichelman was taken into custody last week after being lured back to Santa Cruz County in a prostitution sting.
Police say Tichelman provided heroin for Hayes, a Google executive, while they were aboard the 50-foot yacht.
According to Hayes's obituary, he was a married father of five who had worked as an engineer at Silicon Valley tech companies, including Google, Apple and Sun Microsystems.
Hayes's obituary describes him as a "loving husband and father."
"More than anything else he enjoyed spending time with his family at home and on his boat (well, not more than ANYTHING...). His brilliant mind, contagious smile, and warm embrace will be missed and cherished in memories by his friends and family.," Hayes' obituary says.
Police said that Hayes had an ongoing pay-for-sex relationship with Tichelman, but that relationship came to an end last November on his yacht in the small boat harbor in Santa Cruz.
Surveillance video from his vessel shows Tichelman meeting Hayes on board and it captures the crime itself when she allegedly injected him with a lethal dose of heroin, police say.
"So cold and callous was she that she stepped over the victim's body several times, one time to retrieve a glass of wine and finish the contents of the glass of wine while she's cleaning up her property, cleaning up evidence of the crime there," Santa Cruz Deputy Police Chief Steve Clark said.
Clark told NBC affiliate KSBW that investigators suspect Tichelman is involved in a similar case in another state that left a man dead.
It appears Tichelman expressed excitement about mass murders in a Facebook post last month. A post from the time attached to her name read "It's really nice to talk with someone about killing sprees and murdering people in cold blood...and they love it too. no judgement. yay!"
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