Shot and thrown in bin

But why on earth would any­one want this beloved daugh­ter and mum-to-be dead?

Chat - - Contents -

Lori Hack­ing was a reg­u­lar sight on the roads near her home in Salt Lake City, Utah. A keen run­ner, she’d head out three times a week be­fore or af­ter work. Life was chang­ing for Lori and her hus­band Mark. High-school sweet­hearts, they were about to cel­e­brate their fifth wedding an­niver­sary. And Mark, 28, who’d proudly grad­u­ated from the Univer­sity of Utah with hon­ours, had just been ac­cepted to med­i­cal school in North Carolina. Plus Lori was ex­pect­ing – five weeks gone. But none of that slowed her down. On 19 July 2004, at about 5.30am, Lori left their apart­ment and headed to Salt Lake City’s Mem­ory Grove Park for an early-morn­ing run. When she’d not re­turned by 10.49am, a con­cerned Mark called 911 to re­port that his wife had not come home from her jog. With a re­cent kid­nap case in the city – of a 14-year-old girl – fresh in peo­ple’s minds, a search was soon launched. A tear­ful Mark pub­licly thanked all the vol­un­teers who’d come for­ward to help. ‘It re­ally blows me out of the wa­ter to see how many peo­ple are will­ing to give up so much of them­selves,’ he said. Soon, Lori’s car was found, still parked near the front gates of Mem­ory Grove, but there was noth­ing to give any clues as to what had hap­pened or where she was.

Sev­eral hours later, at about 2am on 20 July, po­lice were called to a dis­tur­bance at the Chase Suite Ho­tel, which was about half a mile from the Hack­ings’ apart­ment.

Po­lice found Mark Hack­ing run­ning around naked ex­cept for his shoes.

A dis­traught hus­band de­mented with worry? Or was there an­other ex­pla­na­tion?

Mark was checked into a psy­chi­atric unit – and, in the days that fol­lowed, the po­lice un­cov­ered a web of lies that shocked the world.

It turned out Mark had never grad­u­ated from the Univer­sity of Utah, nor been ad­mit­ted to col­lege in North Carolina.

Col­leagues re­mem­bered see­ing Lori leav­ing work in tears af­ter re­ceiv­ing a phone call on the Fri­day be­fore her dis­ap­pear­ance.

Some said she’d been ar­rang­ing hous­ing at the med­i­cal school where she be­lieved Mark was about to start and had got a phone call back from them.

Was she cry­ing be­cause they’d re­vealed Mark’s lies?

Just four days later, Mark even­tu­ally ad­mit­ted to his brothers that he’d killed Lori and dumped her body in a rub­bish bin.

Po­lice and vol­un­teers con­tin­ued search­ing tire­lessly for Lori’s body.

And that Au­gust Mark Hack­ing was ar­rested on sus­pi­cion of ag­gra­vated mur­der.

The po­lice said they had enough ev­i­dence, even though a body had not been found.

Of­fi­cial doc­u­ments re­vealed that Mark had told some­one in the Psy­chi­atric Ward that he’d killed his wife as she slept, and then threw her body in the refuse bin. Pa­per­work from the Sher­iff’s Depart­ment also said that hu­man blood was found on a knife in the bed­room of the Hack­ings’ apart­ment, and on the cou­ple’s head­board and bedrail.

On 10 Au­gust, Hack­ing was charged with first-de­gree mur­der.

It emerged that he con­fessed that he and Lori had been ar­gu­ing on the night of 18 July, when she’d dis­cov­ered that he’d been ly­ing about his ed­u­ca­tion.

And early on 19 July, he walked into their bed­room and shot Lori in the head. He then wrapped her body in rub­bish bags and put it in a bin.

Hack­ing was also charged with three counts of ob­struct­ing jus­tice.

Po­lice made public de­tails

Col­leagues re­called Lori leav­ing work in tears

of a let­ter which was seem­ingly writ­ten by Lori to Mark, in which she said, I hate com­ing home from work be­cause it hurts to be in our apart­ment... I can’t imag­ine life with you if things don’t change. I got some­one I don’t know I want to spend the rest of my life with un­less changes are made.

Mean­while, the hunt for Lori’s body con­tin­ued.

Fi­nally, on 1 Oc­to­ber, about three months af­ter Lori went miss­ing, vol­un­teers found her de­com­posed re­mains in a land­fill site.

It’s be­lieved that her fam­ily wanted Hack­ing to plead guilty to avoid a trial, and in April 2005, he did.

Mark Hack­ing pleaded guilty to first-de­gree felony mur­der in ex­change for the dis­missal of three counts of sec­ond-de­gree felony ob­struc­tion of jus­tice.

He made a sim­ple state­ment of guilt to the judge in 3rd District Court: ‘I in­ten­tion­ally shot Lori Hack­ing in the head with a .22 ri­fle.’

Lori’s fa­ther said that hear­ing the news was like ‘a knife go­ing right through my heart’.

Her mother said that the ques­tion at the top of her list was,‘why?’ In June 2005, Hack­ing was sen­tenced to six years to life in prison. As for his mo­tive? The 29-year-old said he had no ex­cuse for his be­hav­iour. ‘She didn’t do noth­ing but love me un­con­di­tion­ally, even when I didn’t de­serve it. She was the great­est thing that ever hap­pened to me, but I killed her and took the life of my un­born child and put them in the garbage, and I can’t ex­plain why I did it,’ he said to the judge. He went on to say that he was ‘tor­mented ev­ery wak­ing minute’ by what he did. Mark was later told by the state Board of Par­dons and Pa­role in Salt Lake City that he will spend 29 more years in prison be­fore he gets a pa­role hear­ing. They set a date of 1 Au­gust 2034 for that re­view. Ten years af­ter her daugh­ter’s death, Lori’s mother, Thelma Soares, gave an in­ter­view in which she said that she’d for­given Mark for what he’d done but ‘will never get over it’.

Her dad said it was like a knife through the heart

Grisly search

The killer’s lies kept the cruel cha­rade go­ing

The happy cou­ple

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