Described as an upscale prostitute, 26-year-old Alix Tichelman of Folsom, California appeared in Santa Cruz Superior Court on July 9 to be arraigned on manslaughter charges in the death of 51-year-old Google executive, Forrest Hayes. Authorities allege that Tichelman shot Hayes up with a fatal dose of heroin, and then left him to die alone on his yacht. In addition to the manslaughter charge, Tichelman is also looking at charges connected to drugs and prostitution.
Hayes was found dead on his 50-foot yacht by the captain of the ship back on Nov. 23, 2013, according to The Sacramento Bee. At the time of his death, the Silicon Valley exec was married with children. He was described in his obituary as “a beloved husband and father of five who enjoyed spending time with his family and on his boat.”
Tichelman’s last deadly encounter with Hayes – and Hayes’ death – was captured on surveillance video, which "shows everything," according to police. The video contains detailed footage of Tichelman arriving on the yacht, and also shows Hayes collapsing. Following Hayes’ collapse on the yacht:
That's when Tichelman picked up her clothes, the heroin and needles, casually stepping over Hayes as he lay dying. She swallowed the last of a glass of wine, lowered a blind and walked back on the dock to shore, police said.
Regarding their last tryst on Hayes’ yacht, Chief Steve Clark of the Santa Cruz Deputy Police Department said that the November meeting between Hayes and the $1,000 prostitute “was a mutually consensual encounter including the introduction of the heroin." Clark also said that the day he died wasn’t the first time Hayes had paid for Tichelman’s services. Without going into detail or citing a specific case, Clark also said that Hayes’ death wasn’t the first time Tichelman left someone in distress without seeking aid on their behalf.
… he said his agency is cooperating with police in a different state on a similar case.
"There's a pattern of behavior here where she doesn't seek help when someone is in trouble," he said.
Hayes’ family home, a “hilltop estate overlooking the glittering Monterey Bay,” is now up for sale for an asking price of $4.2 million. Hayes’ yacht, The Escape, where the Google exec spent his final moments, is also moving on. The yacht “has been sailed out of the harbor to the Bay Area,” according to SFGate. Hayes’ widow has not commented publicly about the case or the prostitute that allegedly shot her husband up with heroin and then left him to die.
Clark said that there wasn’t enough evidence to say whether or not Hayes was a regular heroin user, or if the day he died was his first experience with the highly addictive drug. According to the surveillance footage though, Clark added that Hayes appeared to need Tichelman’s assistance to shoot up. Tichelman will be back in court on July 16 to continue with her arraignment proceedings.
Tichelman is being held on $1.5 million bail. Prosecutors aren’t ruling out adding more serious charges.