Woman's body is found on farm

Police take 3 into custody, charge 2 with murder in psychotherapist's death

Montgomery County link suspected


August 26, 2004|By Athima Chansanchai | Athima Chansanchai,SUN STAFF

The body of a woman thought to be a missing Montgomery County psychotherapist was found yesterday buried beneath a farm shed in southwest Carroll County, authorities said.

Montgomery County police arrested David G. Kaufman, 36, of the 4000 block of Ridge Road -- just outside Taylorsville -- yesterday and charged him with accessory after the fact to a killing that police think occurred in Montgomery County.

Kaufman is one of three people arrested in the killing of Joyce Hadl, 71, who lived in the 2800 block of Washington Ave. in Chevy Chase, police said. The two other suspects have been charged with first-degree murder.

According to charging documents, Kaufman told police he drove Hadl's body to his home and buried it beneath a shed in exchange for $250. Documents state that Kaufman transported the body, which was wrapped in a sheet, in a trash can that was later dumped in a Carroll County landfill.

Kaufman is scheduled for a bail hearing today.

Montgomery County police said investigators served a search warrant Tuesday night at Kaufman's Carroll County residence, a 2 1/2 -story, gray-shingled farmhouse partly obstructed by trees and less than a mile from Route 26. Two red barns and several ramshackle outbuildings are also on the property.

Tenant charged

Hadl's tenant, Susan Lynn Sachs, 39, was charged Monday with first-degree murder, police said. Sachs is being held at the Montgomery County Detention Center without bail.

Tuesday night, Roger Mandel Greenberg, 62, of the 11500 block of Seven Locks Road in Potomac was taken into custody, then transported to a local hospital, complaining of chest pains, police said. Greenberg was released from the hospital yesterday and charged with first-degree murder, authorities said. Greenberg, who is being held at the Montgomery County Detention Center, was identified in documents as Sachs' boyfriend.

Montgomery County police spokeswoman Lucille Baur said officers think the body found in Carroll County is Hadl's but could not confirm the identity. Medical examiners are not expected to release the cause and manner of death until today.

Three boarders

Baur said Sachs was living in Hadl's home as a tenant, although no documents officially put her at that address. Sachs was one of three boarders living at the Chevy Chase home, she said.

Authorities said they do not expect further arrests.

"It is our understanding Dr. Hadl was a good Samaritan who provided lodging to a number of people," Baur said.

Baur said Hadl's business card listed her as a clinical psychotherapist and licensed social worker. She received a license as a certified clinical social worker in Maryland in 1977, according to the Maryland Board of Social Work Examiners. Police said Hadl saw patients at her home, although authorities said she might have had a practice elsewhere.

Dispute reported

Police said they responded to a dispute at Hadl's residence on Aug. 16 that involved Sachs.

"When officers arrived, Dr. Hadl expressed her interest in an on-the-spot eviction of Susan Sachs," Baur said. "But Montgomery County police don't have the legal authority to do that."

Authorities said Sachs refused to leave voluntarily, but an officer contacted the Montgomery County crisis center, which agreed to conduct a mental evaluation.

Charging documents state that a tenant in the house saw Sachs and Greenberg carrying garbage bags from the house and placing them in Greenberg's Crown Victoria at 3:30 a.m. Saturday.

Missed appointments

On Saturday afternoon, police said they were notified by Hadl's cousin that the psychotherapist was not returning calls from family members and had missed appointments with patients.

When officers arrived at Hadl's home, her car was parked in front. Baur said officers called for a bloodhound.

Baur said officers went into the house and retrieved a blanket and pillow from Hadl's bedroom, hoping the dog could pick up a scent. They noticed that the bed had no sheets, but was covered with a new mattress pad. The dog was not able to pick up a scent.

Police went back to the bedroom to return the blanket and pillow and turned back the mattress pad, where they found a dark stain on the mattress believed to be blood, authorities said.

Suspect interviewed

At that point, Baur said, Montgomery homicide detectives started investigating.

Baur said Sachs consented to an interview Monday about Hadl's disappearance. Detectives later arrested Sachs and charged her with murder.

Police said they also found receipts for cleaning supplies Sachs had purchased from a supermarket. Surveillance tapes showed Sachs and Greenberg in the market, police said.

Documents state that Sachs told officers she used the supplies to scrub the floor in Hadl's room.

The Associated Press and Sun staff writer Ellie Baublitz contributed to this article.

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