Alix Catherine Tichelman, the prostitute who stands accused of leaving Google executive Forrest Timothy Hayes to die on his fifty foot yacht, was a popular escort in the tech scene.
Police said she had a number of clients in Silicon Valley, claiming more than 200 all together. She also has ties to the technology industry through her family. In 2012, her father, Bart Tichelman, joined software firm SynapSense.
According to officials, Tichelmen provided Hayes with heroin and shot it into him. When he began overdosing, she left him to die rather than seek help. Video of his boat revealed that before she left, she enjoyed a glass of wine while Hayes lay unconscious. The next morning, Hayes was found dead by the captain of this yacht.
Police lured Tichelman to a high end hotel, requesting her escort services, and arrested her on the spot. She faces charges for second degree murder, destruction of evidence, and providing narcotics. Santa Cruz Deputy Police Chief Steve Clark told the Santa Cruz Sentinel that while the overdose may have been accidental, her evidence of guilt as he lay dying pushed the charges towards second degree murder instead of involuntary manslaughter.