AP file
This is an undated photo of Lori Hacking released by her family last week.
updated 7/28/2004 9:52:33 PM ET 2004-07-29T01:52:33

Police labeled Lori Hacking’s disappearance a criminal investigation two days after she vanished, using that term to obtain a court order sealing details of a search warrant in the case.

While still calling it a missing-person case, police obtained the court order for one of the subpoenas they obtained to collect evidence. The order, a public document revealed Wednesday, says police did not want to tip off any possible suspects to a “criminal investigation.”

Police have named Mark Hacking a “person of interest” in his wife’s disappearance, but not a suspect.

Lori Hacking, a 27-year-old stockbroker’s assistant, was last seen by friends July 18, and her husband has said she never returned from a jog the next morning.

Mark Hacking’s credibility came under scrutiny the day after she disappeared, when it was revealed he had been lying to his wife, family and police about having been accepted to medical school at the University of North Carolina. Not only that, the 28-year-old hospital orderly had not even graduated from college.

Police said Hacking lived a life of various lies for at least four of the five years he has been married. Hacking has been at a psychiatric hospital since he was found running outdoors naked the night after the search began.

Secret cigarettes
Hacking’s deceptions grew by another small measure Wednesday, when store clerks identified him as a regular who bought cigarettes, but asked that they not reveal the habit to his wife.

“It may be part of his deceptive lifestyle,” Detective Phil Eslinger said Wednesday.

Police planned to return Wednesday night to a municipal landfill, following up on the tip of a neighbor who says someone may have used his plastic trash barrel to dispose of a body.

Police searched the landfill one night last week and again Tuesday without turning up a clue of her whereabouts. Detectives have described it as a daunting task, churning up 15 feet of garbage and dirt over a wide area. They are searching at night when dogs work more effectively in the cooler air.

Also Wednesday, the families of Mark and Lori Hacking shut down their volunteer command post at a Mormon meeting house after calling off an organized search of neighborhoods, industrial areas and nearby canyons. The volunteer search may resume later.

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