Image: Tyler Hadley
Tyler Hadley, 17, of Port St. Lucie, Fla. Hadley is accused of beating his parents to death with a hammer and then throwing a party. staff and news service reports
updated 7/20/2011 8:11:18 PM ET 2011-07-21T00:11:18

A Florida teenager accused of beating his parents to death with a hammer told a friend that he stood behind his mother for about five minutes before deciding to attack her, according to police documents released Wednesday.

Police said Tyler Hadley, 17, appeared "nervous, frantic and very talkative," with enlarged pupils and a "blank stare," when they arrived at the family's Port St. Lucie home the morning after the slayings.

Officers say they had received a tip from a friend, identified only as "MM," that Hadley confessed to killing his parents as he hosted a party at the family's suburban home.

By the friend's account, as documented within a juvenile arrest affidavit, Hadley's mother was sitting at a bedroom computer when Hadley decided to hit her in the back of the head with the hammer. According to the documents, she screamed one question to her son: "Why?"

The friend said that the father then walked into the bedroom and he and Hadley "stared into each other's eyes" before Hadley attacked him, according to the police documents.

Hadley is charged with murder in the deaths of Blake and Mary-Jo Hadley and is being held without bond. He made his first court appearance before a Florida judge Tuesday and saw charges against him reduced to second-degree murder from first-degree murder.

When officers arrived at the home early Sunday, the parent's bodies were found in the master bedroom covered with books, towels and office folders. A hammer was found between the bodies.

"It was a merciless killing," Port St. Lucie Police Capt. Don Kryak told reporters Tuesday. "It was brutal."

Police spokesman Thomas Nicholls said Hadley's relationship with his parents was being investigated. He added the teen had made no incriminating statements.

Story: Relative: Murder of 'normal' parents shocking

The teen took his parents' cell phones away ahead of the attack and put them in his bedroom so they couldn't call for help, according to his friend's account. He also showed the friend a credit card he had taken from them so that he could obtain money, the friend said, according to the police documents. He also told the friend he planned to kill himself by taking 10 Percocet pills.

Police said the wounds they found on the victims' bodies were consistent with a claw hammer.

Assistant State Attorney Tom Bakkehdal said the prosecution would press for life in prison. Because Hadley is six months shy of his 18th birthday, he is not eligible for the death penalty.

News of the killings shocked people in the quiet coastal town. "He was always a good kid," neighbor Raeann Wallace told local TV station WNPV.

At the party, Hadley had asked his friend to step outside to talk, according to the juvenile arrest affidavit, where he described the killings. When the friend wasn't convinced, Hadley showed him friend a bloody footprint in the garage and, then the master bedroom.

"He observed human legs beneath a pile of items that had been thrown on the floor," according to the documents. 

Reuters contributed to this report.

© 2013

Video: Cops: Teen killed parents then threw party

  1. Closed captioning of: Cops: Teen killed parents then threw party

    >>> it's a crime straight out of a horror novel. police in florida say a teenager murdered his parents and then threw a party as they lay dead in their home. nbc's mark potter is here with the disturbing story. mark, good morning to you.

    >> reporter: good morning to you, matt. neighbors are stunned by what police found in the house behind me. two parents dead on the floor. their son is now charged with murder and sits in jail.

    >> they say you murdered your parents --

    >> reporter: 17-year-old tyler hadley was transferred monday evening from juvenile detention to the saint lucie county jail after he was charged as an adult with the premeditated murders of both his parents. 54-year-old blake hadley , a power company worker and 47-year-old mary jo hadley , a popular school teacher . police say they were bludgeoned to death with a framing hammer like this one.

    >> it was a merciless killing. it was brutal.

    >> reporter: police discovered the grizzly scene early sunday morning after an anonymous tip about a possible murder brought them to the hadley home in port st. louisy, florida. they say they found the bodies on the floor with the hammer between them. tyler hadley , month met police at the door, was arrested at the scene, where police say he had tried to hide the bodies but neither items from the house.

    >> books, files, towels. anything that he could find inside the home to cover the bodies.

    >> reporter: police say hadley killed his parents and hid their bodies on saturday. also on that day, police say hadley invited facebook friends to his house for a party and went on, police say, to party with dozens of his friends.

    >> there was at least a good 50 people here.

    >> reporter: the neighbors called police at 2:30 sunday morning to complain about the noise.

    >> kids hanging out of the windows yelling at each other.

    >> reporter: police returned to the home after receiving the murder tip. police say hadley isn't talking, and they have not established a motive. neighbors and family friends were stunned.

    >> we are just perplexed, i guess. as everyone. what happened.

    >> you wonder what could possibly have gone so wrong. what could be going through a child's mind to do something so violent and horrible to his parents. it's mind-boggling.

    >> reporter: now, hadley has yet to enter a plea. last night, his grandfather told nbc news that just a week ago, the boy attended a family reunion and showed no signs of disturbance. in fact, actually seemed to be enjoying himself there with his father. matt?

    >> mark potter this morning in port st. louisy, thank you


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