Authorities in two states believe two brothers in Texas may have a connection to their grandfather’s alleged murder at the hands of their own grandmother a few years ago.
Austin, Texas Police Department search warrants are seeking DNA samples from StevenHarris and MichaelHarris — an extension of law enforcement efforts in York County, Pennsylvania, since October 2021. Keystone State Police say they have not been able to contact the brothers.
The case dates back more than a decade.
2011, 62 years old Thomas Hayden disappeared – almost without a trace. His wife, Virginia HaydenThe 70-year-old never reported him missing. Instead, according to federal prosecutors, she continued to unlawfully collect his Social Security benefits — totaling about $113,000 over about six years. She was charged with the murder of her third husband in April 2019 by Northern York Regional Police in Pennsylvania.
In addition to her husband’s murder charges, Virginia Hayden faces 64 other state charges including forgery, conspiracy, theft, receipt of stolen property and tampering with public records.
A federal charge of fraud and conversion fees was returned against her in February 2021, PennLive reported.
Though his actual body was never found, Thomas Hayden is presumed more than dead. In January 2012, a vacuum-sealed FoodSaver bag was found on the side of a road near Conewago Creek in Dover Township, Pennsylvania. Size sheets.
This gruesome discovery is said to have confused police for years. The DNA was tested but no results came back. There was no indication who owned the scalp. A hiatus in the case would last a little over five years.
end of January 2017, Kim Via, the estranged daughter of Thomas Hayden, called police and said she hadn’t spoken to her father in 11 years. But, she told police, it wasn’t for lack of trying. Via, who lives in Louisiana, said she tried to reach her but every time the phone was answered by Virginia Hayden, who allegedly told her her father didn’t want to talk.
Virginia Hayden was eventually questioned by police. She said her husband left in 2011 to receive medical treatment for Lou Gehrig’s disease in Mexico. But police say they gave varied details about his departure and have never been able to explain the creases in their story. A FoodSaver vacuum sealer was found in her apartment. Police also found Thomas Hayden’s passport, driver’s license and Social Security card in a locked box, the police said York daily record.
Additional DNA testing revealed the scalp belonged to a sibling of Thomas Hayden’s two brothers.
Virginia Hayden is said to have said she knew her husband was dead. That statement was allegedly made in November 2014 when she sold the apartment she and Thomas Hayden used to share to another man, who told police about their conversation. But that sale only came about after Virginia Hayden forged her husband’s signature on a deed in November 2013 to sell her his share of the property for a dollar, according to police. This alleged forgery was facilitated by the notary services of the alleged murderess’ daughter, Connie Penderwho currently resides in Austin, Texas.
Pender was charged with forgery, theft by deception, tampering with public documents, and conspiracy. She struck a plea deal with the York County Attorney’s Office for two years probation.
Now there’s another Austin connection to the case.
According to a search warrant issued by local NBC affiliate KXAN, Virginia Hayden was “very close” to her grandson, Michael Harris, and had once given him a credit card in Thomas Hayden’s name. He reportedly told investigators that he was in high school at the time and it was just “free money” for him.
The warrant also states that the allegedly close couple were “talking about . . . the disposal of corpses.”
“Virginia informed Michael that if you feed a person to pigs, they will eat everything but their hair,” the court document said.
Law&Crime contacted the Travis County Clerk for a copy of the warrant. This request was rejected because the document was said to be “inactive”. Follow-up inquiries to the Austin Police Department went unanswered.
[image via York County Prison]
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