Detectives: Hazel Dell killing tied to burglary at cop's home - KPTV - FOX 12

Warrant connected to murder investigation of former officer

Posted: Updated: Oct 14, 2012 06:54 AM
VANCOUVER, WA (KPTV) -

A search warrant was served in Hazel Dell Wednesday morning in connection with a murder investigation.

A man being held in a Hazel Dell murder is also accused of stealing five guns and a sheriff's deputy badge during a burglary at a Battle Ground home, court documents say.

Investigators said Kirk Hernandez Sr. and Darrell Fry killed 43-year-old Matthew Clark on Oct. 1 at a home on Northeast 25th Avenue, south of 99th Street in Vancouver.

Hernandez, according to detectives, told police he and Fry first went to Clark's home because Clark owed him $60 and some meth, and because he said Clark had stolen guns.

During a confrontation inside the house, Clark was shot and killed, detectives said.

Fry then drove away while Hernandez ran off on foot, tossing a gun into a storm drain, the court documents allege.

Members of the Southwest Washington Regional SWAT team assisted detectives at 5:30 a.m. Wednesday in the service of a search warrant at 514 NE 85th Circle.

The focus of the warrant was to collect evidence and recover stolen property associated with the case, according to deputies.

Investigators said they recovered a small quantity of a controlled substance, some potential evidence but no stolen property. No one was in the home at the time.

A week before the murder, Hernandez and two others allegedly broke into the Battle Ground home of a retired law enforcement officer and made off with several guns, including a .38 caliber Smith and Wesson revolver and an Elko, NV, sheriff's deputy badge from when the retired officer had been promoted to sergeant.

The burglary suspects then gave the guns to Clark so he could sell them, authorities said.

Though the gun used to kill Clark appeared to be a .38 caliber Smith and Wesson revolver, prosecutors couldn't confirm the murder weapon was the same gun stolen in the burglary a week earlier.

Hernandez and Fry both made court appearances Monday morning. They're being held on $1 million bail.

A friend of Hernandez showed up to court Monday to show his support.

"He's a pretty good guy," said Daniel Gentile. "He relapsed and is a victim of meth."

Gentile told FOX 12 he was in recovery with Hernandez but hadn't seen him for a few months.

"(I'm) shocked," he said. "There was a different person there. I'm used to seeing a happy, family loving person, and he just looked like all the life had been sucked out of him."

Investigators said there are no outstanding people of interest in this case.

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