Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Marie Hilley

Teri

John Homan claims to have believed Marie Hilley's new ruse until the moment she was apprehended. Her hair was still bleached, and during her stay in Florida she had lost quite a lot of weight. As Teri, she carried herself differently, so it is at least somewhat believable that John, insecure and highly suggestible, was fooled. The day after her arrival she and John went to the office of the Keene Sentinel to place Robbi Homan's obituary. The short piece contained several fabricated details which would finally be Marie's undoing. They later went to Central Screw where Marie introduced herself to Robbi's former coworkers as Teri, the twin sister they'd heard so much about. Some there believed her; others weren't fooled for a second. The speculation began.

Teri Martin moved in with John Homan, claiming they needed to be together to get over Robbi's death. She got a job just across the state line in Brattleboro, Vermont at Book Press, a book printing company. Like her sister Robbi, Teri was a competent secretary. She settled into her new job comfortably, and for a while things seemed quiet. Back at Central Screw, though, the controversy raged—was she or wasn't she? A group of doubters decided to focus on the obituary. They first discovered that the hospital to which Robbi's body had supposedly been left—Medical Research Institute of Texas—did not exist. Then they found that the church to which the obituary stated Robbi had belonged in Texas was fictitious as well. A check of obituaries and coroner's records in the Dallas area around the date of November 10, 1982 yielded nothing. The doubting Central Screw employees took their findings to manager Ron Oja, who began some checking of his own. His efforts also produced no corroborating evidence for the assertions in the obituary. The gossip about this amateur investigation spread through Central Screw and into the Keene community, and it wasn't long before local police were informed that something wasn't right about the woman who claimed to be Teri Martin.

Detective Bob Hardy of the Keene Police Department started by interviewing the workers from Central Screw, then made some phone calls of his own. Again, nothing in the obituary added up. Hardy began making inquiries with other law enforcement agencies. The New Hampshire State Police told him something interesting—a woman named Carol Manning who fit Teri Martin's description was wanted for bank robbery. Authorities began watching Teri. They soon decided she was not Carol Manning, but thought she must be Terry Lynn Clifton, another fugitive.

Marie Hilley (Anniston Star)
Marie Hilley
(Anniston Star)

On January 12, 1983, they apprehended her at Book Press. When they asked her name, her answer puzzled them. She was Audrey Marie Hilley, she claimed, and she was wanted in Alabama on bad check charges. When police put her name out on the wire the word came back quickly—she was indeed Audrey Marie Hilley, but she had more than just check charges to face back in Alabama.

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