How the O’Hara death was discoveredFront Page News Saturday, September 28th, 2013 Would you like to receive e-mail alerts when we have breaking news? Click here!
SLANESVILLE — A chance encounter on Hickory Corner Road led to the discovery of the death of Michael O’Hara and the arrest of the duo responsible, police say.
The Hampshire County Sheriff’s Office released information late Friday outlining what happened early Thursday morning outside Slanesville.
Police say O’Hara was most likely killed in the bedroom of his home by his estranged wife, Mandy O’Hara, with some aid from John S. Shoemaker after they broke in. O’Hara had been living for several months in Capon Bridge with Shoemaker and Gabriella Clutter.
The duo wrapped the body in a tarp, police said, and tied it to the back of a car and were dragging it down Hickory Corner Road when an eyewitness drove past.
The body had come loose from the vehicle and that’s when the eyewitness spotted it lying in the roadway.
Police reported that the man, who they are not identifying, briefly spoke with Mandy O’Hara and John S. Shoemaker, who then sped off. The eyewitness followed them to get a better description of the car before losing sight.
He drove to a spot on Hickory Corner Road where he could get cell service and called 911 at 5:34 a.m.
Apparently, while he was gone, the pair returned, tied O’Hara’s body back to the car and dragged it to the river, police say. The two allegedly carried the body into the water and hid it under a tree on the opposite bank. In all, police speculate, his body was dragged between 3 and 4 miles.
Deputies who arrived where the eyewitness saw the body on the roadway were able to track it to the river.
“We commend the actions taken by the eyewitness on the information he sought after and was able to relay viable information to responding deputies and investigators,” Hampshire County Sheriff John Alkire and Chief Deputy Nathan Sions said in their press release last night.
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