In 2017 media outlets began reporting on a murder-suicide in McLean, Virginia.
At around 2PM on Friday the 14th of July a 911 dispatcher received a call regarding a disturbance at a home on 6700 Dean Drive, reporting the possible death of the occupants inside. The call had been made from Dallas, Texas, and the caller identified himself as the boyfriend of one of the victim’s sisters. The victim, 23 year old Helen Lorena Hargan, called him in a panic and told him that her own sister had shot and killed her mother.
The radios of officers in Fairfax County came to life with the news: “Disturbance on the block of 6700 Dean Drive, McLean. Possible murder. Call dialed in by a third party”
When local officers arrived on the scene in McLean they attempted to communicate with the residents from outside of the property, but received no answer. Eventually two bodies were found inside the home and it appeared that both had been fatally shot using a rifle. They discovered the boy of an older woman along with some spent cartridges in the laundry room and the body of a younger woman, along with a rifle, upstairs in one of the bedrooms.
The women were identified as mother and daughter and it appeared as though the deaths were a murder-suicide. The mother, 63 year old Pamela Hargan, appeared to have been shot by her 23 year old daughter who had then turned the gun on herself. Later, a medical examiner confirmed that the two women had indeed died due to fatal gunshots to the head.
Pamela’s granddaughter, a 7 year old female, was listed as staying at the home and neighbors feared that she too had been harmed, until it was later confirmed that the child was not at the house at the time of the incident. She was safe in the care of her mother, 34 year old Megan Hargan, who informed police that she was on her way to McLean from Maryland and would be there as soon as possible.
Neighbors told police that they didn’t know the victims very well at all, and expressed disappointment that the community wasn’t closer.
The crime scene was completely reconstructed and closely scrutinized for days in order to confirm the suspicion that there had been a double murder. It didn’t take long for Fairfax County police to confirm that the entire scene was staged and was most definitely a double homicide disguised as a murder suicide.
But who was the killer and what was the motive?
Megan Hargan was interviewed twice by investigators, and eventually moved 200 miles away to West Virginia, settling down in Monongalia County with her husband.
A deeper look into the case revealed that attempts to transfer cash from Pamela Hargan’s bank accounts had been made the day before as well as on the day of the murder. Shockingly, the suspicious and fraudulent attempts had been made by Megan Hargan, who had attempted to guess at her mother’s passwords in order to wire money to herself.
Tammy North, Pamela Hargan’s sister, pointed the finger of blame in the direction of Megan Hargan for over a year and told police and the media that she “had no question” that her niece was responsible for the double murder. When asked about a possible motive for the crime, Tammy claims that is was money, jealousy and hatred. She told reporters that Megan was jealous of the youngest sister Helen and the fact that their mother, Pamela, had recently bought her a house that the pair were going to move in together.
"I’ve known that it was coming, and now it's here. It was like it all blew up in your face" she said.
Just last week, on the 9th of November, 2018, Megan Hargan, now 35 years old, was arrested and charged with the double murder of her own mother and sister. Police arrested her in Monongalia County after she dropped her daughter off at school for what will likely be the final time.
In her arrest picture Megan Hargan looks haggard and sullen, no doubt consumed by the memories of the crime and the constant fear that the police were closing in. She has been formally accused on 2 counts of 1st degree murder as well as 2 counts of using a firearm in committing a felony.
Stay tuned for updates in the case.
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