Thursday, October 16, 2014
An abundance of spending?
"He was one of my closest friends here, and nothing he ever did sent up any major red flags," stated Andrew Burmann.
The police had the terrible task of telling Alan Hruby, 19, of Duncan OK that his entire family was dead on Oct 13 2014 and then hours later he was under arrest. When he was told of the triple homicide, he almost collapsed while wailing, crying and hyperventilating and police report that he was unable to coherently communicate with them for a short time. The bodies of his parents, John Hruby, 50, his mother Tinker Hruby, 48 and his seventeen year old sister Katherine were discovered by the family's housekeeper on Monday morning when she arrived at the home. The housekeeper reportedly called her daughter with the news and the daughter was the one to notify Alan.
The police state that Alan was cold and callous when he had been told that his family was dead but the histrionics began after they arrested him on an unrelated stolen check charge. Alan confessed to the murders in the evening of Oct 14 2014 and has given police a fairly good description of how the crime was committed.
Alan has stated, according to the police, that he was the one who stole his father's handgun and that was the weapon that was used to kill his family. John reported to the police on the afternoon of Oct 9 2014, that his Walther PPS 9 mm was stolen from the center console of his pickup between 7:45 pm Oct 8 and 9 am Oct 9.
That same afternoon, Alan parked the Jeep his parents had given him last year as a graduation gift about a block or two from the family home in Duncan. He then entered the home through a back door into the kitchen and shot his mother Tinker twice, once in the neck and once in the head. His sister Katherine had been outside washing her car and she rushed into the house through the front door. As she ran to the kitchen, Alan shot her once in the head.
Alan waited in the house until his father, John returned home from work and he shot him once in the neck and once in the head, killing him as well. After killing all three members of his family, Alan took the gun and a surveillance recording device and tossed them into a nearby lake before he headed back to his dorm room 75 miles away at the University of Oklahoma. He picked up his cellphone at Headington Hall where he had left it in case the police tried to use it to ping his whereabouts that day. He had hoped that by leaving it, the phone would show that he had been in his dorm room all day.
He then traveled to Dallas TX for the OU-Texas game and stayed with friends at the Ritz-Carlton hotel. He posted pics of himself and at least two other people while they were in the room and the police have spoken to at least one of them so far.
Andrew Burmann, his roommate traveled with Alan for that trip and has stated that he did not act as if anything was wrong. They were laughing and having a good time and nothing seemed out of the ordinary with Alan. He doesn't know how Alan could have acted that way when he was hiding such a horrible secret from them.
Money seems to be at the root of this crime and Alan's roommate Burmann stated that he knew some of that truth. Alan had told the police that he had recently been cut off financially by his family and he added that he owed $3,000 to a loan shark. Andrew states that he knew his freshman roommate Alan spent lavishly and it was common for him to go out and buy things on a whim. He added that Alan had spent about $20,000 on purchases in the first month he was there and he was now in Shoppers Anonymous, a group that helps people with shopping problems.
He remembers one specific time when Alan got angry with his parents and that was when he tried to transfer money out of his trust fund and his father stopped him from completing the transaction. Alan has also been described as obsessed with money and impulsive and reportedly attacked his mother two years ago in a dispute over money.
In 2013, Alan obtained a credit card in his grandmother's name and charged nearly $5,000 on the card while he was on a European trip. His father John had given Alan a travel voucher which he used to go to Europe in June 2013. In August 2013 he was charged with a felony of putting fraudulent charges on his grandmother's account. He pleaded guilty to the charge in January 2014 and was placed on a delayed sentencing program for youthful offenders. He was ordered to pay restitution, undergo substance abuse evaluation, attend drug and alcohol counseling and to undergo a cognitive behavior program.
John Hruby was the publisher at the Marlow Review and his wife worked there as well. He had previously owned The Duncan Banner until he sold it in 1997. He also was the vice president of the Oklahoma Newspaper Foundation Board of Trustees. He has been called a hardworking boss and his wife Joy, better known as Tinker was a dedicated member of many town clubs. Katherine has been described as a strong student and athlete at Duncan High School.
John had followed both his grandfather and father into the newspaper business beginning at The Duncan Banner. He sold that paper and left the business until he purchased the Marlow Review in 2007 and immediately strove to make that a quality newspaper for the community. He followed that by purchasing the Comanche County Chronicle in Elgin in 2013. Tinker worked there as well concentrating on crime and court cases over the years as well as filling in for the lifestyles reporter the last few weeks. Katherine was a junior at Duncan High School, regularly delivered the Marlow Review and played volleyball at the high school.
The police report that they received a call from the Hruby's housekeeper at 9 am on Monday. She reported that there were three bodies at 1217 Bent Tree St and they were cold and not breathing. The arriving police found the three members of the Hruby family dead. The housekeeper's daughter had called Alan to tell him that he needed to go home because something was wrong at the house. When he arrived, the police asked him to come to the station with them for questioning. While they were trying to get an idea of what Alan's movements were for the weekend, they discovered that his trip to Dallas had violated his parole conditions. That was when they decided to arrest Alan and hold him for more questioning.
It is difficult to understand how some children feel so entitled to the wealth that their parents have worked hard to gain. Alan has basically thrown away his whole life and murdered his whole family over money..... something he should have learned is the thing he has to earn on his own. Murder never equals earning.
Related story on this blog:
Update Oct 17 2014:
Alan Hruby has been described as an evil person and had completely planned the murder of his family for financial gain. He believed that as the sole member of his family, he would inherit the family fortune and that would fix his money needs. Friends who had been with him over the weekend though describe a very different person. They stated that he was a normal guy, laughing and having a good time and gave no indication that he had killed his whole family and left their bodies lying in the home.
Other people on campus paint a different picture of Alan. They state that he was obsessed with money and tangible things like Louis Vuitton backpacks and brand new I phones. They added that he teneded to keep to himself and complain about his parents. Most who heard him state that his parents were mad with him about money did not think that he could or would kill them though.
The Duncan police had been investigating Alan since August because there had been evidence that he had forged checks for $17,500 and a search of his dorm room produced more stolen checks. He was suspected also of either stealing one of his mother's credit cards or starting one in her name to help pay for the extravagance he seemed to crave. It has been reported that while he loved to travel and posts pictures of expensive items on his social media accounts, he always seems to be alone.
The police report that he has been charged with three counts of first degree murder and two counts of knowingly concealing stolen property. The lawyer that was representing him for the credit card theft case has withdraw from representing him and the court date for that sentencing has been made for November 12 2014. The prosecutor has stated that they may seek the death penalty in this case and he is currently being held without bail and has no lawyer. Evidently, Alan was crying in court when the charges were read to him and seemed more upset that he had been caught than that his family was dead by his hand. I would almost think that he must have been reading from the same play-book that Heather Mack and her boyfriend Tommy Schaefer had.
Did you really think that the police would not catch you and was the love of money and expensive things really worth killing for?
Update Oct 18 2014:
It seems that Alan had money problems on several fronts......... he claimed to owe a loan shark $3,000, was under investigation for thousands of dollars in forged checks and he owed money to the courthouse. He was on probation and had been ordered to pay restitution as part of his special probation but at the time of the murders, he still owed $491 in court costs and fines.
On Aug 6 2014, Alan was stopped by the Oklahoma Highway Patrol in Garvin County and was ticketed for speeding and failure to stay in a single lane of traffic. He never showed up for arraignment or to pay the tickets that totaled $420. The Garvin County Clerk's Office had mailed out an intent to issue a warrant for Alan's arrest and potentially suspend his driver's license on Oct 6 2014 to his last known address in Duncan OK.
The two charges of knowingly concealing stolen property refer to checks he had in his possession that had been reported stolen in July 2014. For a young man who is on probation already for a felony conviction, it would seem that he had not yet gotten the full picture of how much he was screwing up his life. It would not surprise me that the notice for not paying his traffic fines was the real reason for the need to eliminate his family. I don't think that his father would be all that pleased with what the new charge was going to do to Alan when he was sentenced next month..... if he wasn't arrested before that sentencing date.
Update Oct 19 2014:
It has been reported that Alan's problems with the law began long before this recent year of trouble. Alan reportedly stole his grandmother's car when he was 13 years old. Former classmates of his describe him as known for telling tall tales as well as being wary of him. A faculty member from his high school stated that they did not know what it was but fellow students did not want to cross him. Alan evidently made sure that if you crossed him, he would get you back for it.
His tall tales included such things as posting on his social media that he was the fifth highest ranking tennis player in the state but in actuality, he could not even make the starting lineup of the team his senior year. He told teammates that he was going to be a male model and that he was going to appear in W magazine in December but most did not believe him.
The stolen checks he was suspected of stealing belonged to a friend of his grandmother's, Mary Smith. She kept her business checks at home and Alan evidently visited quite often. She did not know that checks had been missing and cashed between June 1 and July 15 2014 until First Bank and trust notified her in August that she was a victim of forgery. A video surveillance camera in Norman captured Alan cashing one of the checks there. The police in Norman found four more stolen checks under his bed in the dorm along with a notebook with handwritten notes about the forgeries and his victims names.
His parents evidently had hit their limit of patience and forgiveness when Alan obtained an American Express card in his grandmother's name in 2013. His father John wanted him prosecuted and he was described as being enraged by the action. Alan was prosecuted for running up $5,000 in charges on the card but police state that the real total was closer to $80,000 in charges. That is a huge difference in charges and certainly is more than a "little" problem with overspending. A family could live for a year on the $75,000 difference he stole from his grandmother.
Update Oct 20 2014:
The police have stated that they still do not know how long Alan planned the murder of his family but they have revealed more of the timeline that Alan followed. He was stopped by police at 1:05 am on the 300 block of W Plato Rd which is about a mile from his parents home on the day of the murders. He admitted that he had made that trip home specifically to steal his father's handgun. John reported the gun stolen later that afternoon.
He told the officer who stopped him that he did not have his driver's license with him and gave the officer a false name and birth date. He was let go with a traffic ticket and headed back to Norman at that time. He did tell investigators that he had left his cellphone in his dorm room so that police would not be able to track his movements. Police did though use Pikepass records to track his trip in the early morning to and from Norman and the family home in Duncan.
Update Oct 24 2014:
Evidently Alan still manages to lie as well as try to continue his indulgent life. He had told the police that he had dumped his father's pistol and the hard drive from the home surveillance system in Duncan lake but divers were unable to find either of them. The police did find both those items as well as other items stolen from the house including a Calvin Klein purse. They were hidden away in the family storage unit, not tossed away where he would never get to have them again.
The police have recovered what they believe to be Alan's clothing that he wore during the murders from the side of the road. They have been reviewing area surveillance cameras in an attempt to track Alan's movements after the shooting and they spotted his Jeep caught on the camera from a farm equipment dealership. The footage from the Great Plains Kubota dealership shows Alan's Jeep pulling into the storage units nearby at 7:54 pm on Oct 9th, staying for a few minutes and then driving off.
Police rushed to get a search warrant for the storage unit and the search of it began at 11:58 pm on Tuesday night. They already had a photo of John's gun that he had given them when he reported the handgun stolen. They found the gun, hard drive, purse and other stolen items inside of the storage unit which is located only about 5 miles from the family home. Evidently Alan not only was trying to cover up the murder but he had to have some items as well, for whatever purpose.