17-year-old accused of killing parents, then throwing party for friends

Tyler Hadley
St. Lucie West Centennial HS 2010 yearbook mug.

Tyler Hadley St. Lucie West Centennial HS 2010 yearbook mug.

Tyler Hadley posted an invitation to a party on Facebook, then killed his parents before as many as 60 people attended the gathering at his home on Granduer Avenue, police said.

That’s what Port St. Lucie police believe happened beginning Saturday afternoon before investigators went to the home about 4:20 a.m. Sunday. An anonymous tip indicated a 17-year-old might have killed his parents and the bodies were in the home. Police found a hammer between the bodies of Mary Jo Hadley, 47, and 54-year-old Blake Hadley. Tyler Hadley, 17, was arrested late Sunday on two counts of first-degree murder.

“It was a merciless killing. It was brutal and the Facebook invitation — a party to have your friends and 40 to 60 people come over — I think speaks for itself,” Port St. Lucie police Capt. Don Kryak said, standing at the scene Monday. “The blunt force trauma to the head and torso with a 22-inch framing hammer can effect a considerable amount of injury.”

Police believe Tyler Hadley acted alone, but don’t know a motive. The former St. Lucie West Centennial High School student made no incriminating statements.

Kryak said the Facebook party invitation was posted about 1:15 p.m. or 1:30 p.m. Saturday — before the homicides occurred. Investigators suspect Tyler Hadley’s mother was killed first, and then his father, and that the slayings happened outside the master bedroom door of the single-story home in the 300 block of Northeast Granduer Avenue.

Items including books, files and towels covered the bodies, and the hammer was found between them.

When police arrived, Tyler Hadley greeted them.

“He was nervous ... just very nervous when we arrived to do the welfare check,” Kryak said. “He just said that his parents were out of town.”

Mary Jo Hadley was a first-grade teacher at Village Green Elementary School, while Blake Hadley was an employee of Florida Power & Light Co.

Mary Jo Hadley worked 24 years as an elementary school teacher with the St. Lucie County School District, with her last six years being at Village Green Environmental Studies School.

“The St. Lucie County School District family is deeply saddened at the tragic loss of one of our valued colleagues,” the district said in an emailed statement. “Our thoughts and prayers are with the family.”

Kryak said an older brother of Tyler Hadley’s moved out a couple of months ago.

The couple lived in their residence on Granduer Avenue for at least the past 10 years.

“I’ve known Mary Jo since she was in high school in Fort Lauderdale. They are a nice family. The kids are always nice. They used to come to our house trick-or-treating and they always called me Miss Charlie,” said Charlene Moses, a family friend.

The relationship Tyler Hadley had with his parents and the family dynamics were unclear.

“That’s certainly something we want to dive into a little bit more and get a better understanding of what actually takes place in the house,” Kryak said.

Kryak said police went to the home earlier, but there was no reason to enter.

He asked that anyone who attended the party call police at 871-5000.

WPTV NewsChannel 5 contributed to this report.

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