Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

The Murder of Lori Hacking

The Investigation

Outside Hacking's apartment
Outside Hacking's apartment
 

On the day of Lori's disappearance, the police conducted a search of the apartment. During their search they became convinced they were dealing with a homicide. Evidence collected at the apartment included the couple's box spring, a receipt for a new mattress and bedding, a bloody knife found in the bedside drawer in the couple's bedroom, pieces of carpet, clothing and a letter found in a spare bedroom allegedly written by Lori. Other important pieces of evidence taken from various locations included:

  • a trash bin from outside the couple's apartment,
  • a cut up mattress that matched the couples' box spring was found in a trash bin near the University of Utah hospital where Mark worked as an orderly,
  • a clump of dark hair found in a Dumpster outside a Chevron gas station near the hospital,
  • material taken from two cars owned by Mark and Lori,
  • surveillance video tapes taken from three locations: a hospital, a Mormon church located near the park where she allegedly disappeared, and a convenience store.

Interestingly, police also discovered that between 9:45 and 10:23 a.m. on the day Lori went missing, the time Mark claimed to have searched the park and called the police and Lori's colleagues, he was buying a new queen-size mattress at a local bedding store. Even more intriguing, the front seat of Lori's car, which was found near the park, was adjusted to fit a much larger person. Lori was only 5'4" but the seat was moved back to accommodate someone around 6' tall.

Another piece of incriminating evidence found at the apartment were Lori's car keys. Had she driven to the park to jog, one would expect that she would have had her car keys with her when she disappeared.

As the evidence mounted, it became increasingly clear that Mark was involved in Lori's disappearance. Worse yet, over the subsequent days it also became likely that she was dead. Lori's family braced for the worst possible outcome but refused to give up hope in finding their daughter. Even if she was dead, it was important to them to find her body so that she and her unborn baby could receive a proper burial. The wait would prove almost unbearable.

 

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