When it comes to crimes, what you do online is almost never actually entirely secret. Even if you write something in a friends-only social media post, use incognito mode or even share content on the dark web, investigators can uncover what you’ve done. A Welsh man recently found out the hard way that Amazon purchases are particularly easy to track and Vista murder attorney Peter M. Liss says this is precisely how he got caught.
The Welsh Crossbow Murder Mystery
In 2019, a Welsh man was shot by a crossbow as he was trying to fix his satellite dish. Three weeks later, he died of sepsis. There was no forensic evidence or witnesses, but investigators were tipped off to Terence Whall when they reached out to Amazon and found that only two people in the entire UK had purchased the type of arrow that caused the victim’s death. One of the two is well-known as hunter, but the other, Terence Whall, didn’t have an obvious reason for having the weapon.
Shortly afterwards, detectives found a burned SUV in a deserted quarry and learned that Whall borrowed it from his partner. The GPS in the car showed he had driven to the victim’s house the night before he was killed and the night of the murder. Witnesses testified they saw Whall practicing shooting his crossbow.
Lessons to be Learned
While plenty of criminals have been caught after the cashier of a local business testified that they bought a murder weapon, it’s important to remember that buying such a weapon online is just as likely to get you convicted -especially if you’re using a rare item like this crossbow arrow. That being said, any Vista murder attorney would be able to fight charges when they only evidence was the fact that someone bought the same crossbow arrow that killed the victim online and that someone saw that person shooting their crossbow.
But the burned out SUV with a GPS showing the suspect traveled to the victim’s house before the murder and during the time the murder occurred is a lot more difficult to dispute. This is compounded by the fact that Whall was tied to the victim in matters involving illegal cultivation of cannabis, giving him a motive.
Fighting the Charges
This case is also a reminder of why it’s so important to never discuss a case with investigators without your Vista murder attorney present. If the police told Whall only about the evidence from Amazon, he may have claimed he had never met the victim before and just wanted to shoot a crossbow at his house, but as soon as there was evidence he knew the victim, police would have evidence that Whall lied.
If you have been accused of any crime, but particularly one as serious as homicide, Vista murder attorney Peter M. Liss can help. Please call (760) 643-4050 to schedule a free consultation at his office across the street from the Vista courthouse and jail.
Image by Capri23auto