Google exec found dead on yacht, prostitute arrested

Written by Associated Press | Santa Cruz | Updated: Jul 11 2014, 14:48pm hrs
Alix TichelmanAlix Tichelman in court. (AP)
As a Google executive lay dying on his yacht, an upscale prostitute casually walks over him, picks up her clothes and heroin and swallows the last of a glass of wine before lowering the boats blinds and walking back on the dock to shore, police say surveillance footage shows.

Authorities charged Alix Tichelman, 26, with manslaughter Wednesday for her role in the death of Forrest Hayes, who was found dead by the captain of his 50-foot yacht last November. Police said the surveillance video from the yacht shows everything that happened from the time Tichelman came aboard to when she left.

Santa Cruz Deputy Police Chief Steve Clark told The Associated Press on Wednesday that Hayes, 51, had hired Tichelman before, and that their November 23 encounter was a mutually consensual encounter including the introduction of the heroin.

Clark said it appears this might not have been the first time she left someone in trouble without calling police or trying to help. Without elaborating, he said his agency is cooperating with police in a different state on a similar case.

Theres a pattern of behavior here where she doesnt seek help when someone is in trouble, he said.

News vans gathered outside Hayes hilltop estate overlooking the glittering Monterey Bay, where the five-bedroom home is on the market for $4.2 million. Hayes widow has not spoken publicly and a blog created in his memory was deleted.

On the website, friends and co-workers were seemingly unaware of how he died. They fondly described their time together, Christmas parties on his boat, engineering teams at Sun Microsystems, traveling to China for Apple and most recently at Google, where they said he was involved in the Glass eyewear projects.

Clark said its not clear if Hayes was a frequent drug user, and that in the video, it appears he needed Tichelman to help him shoot up. Clark described Tichelman as a high-end prostitute, who charged $1,000 and lived three hours away in the Sacramento suburb of Folsom.

He said she had other clients from Silicon Valley, home to about 50 billionaires and tens of thousands of millionaires.

Tichelman was arrested on July 4 after police said a detective lured her back to the Santa Cruz area by posing as a potential client at an upscale resort.

Police said Tichelman boasted she had more than 200 clients and met them through a website that purports to connect wealthy men and women with attractive companions.