A prostitute has been jailed for six years for giving a Google executive a deadly dose of heroin.
Alix Tichelman, 28, from California, unexpectedly pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter and administering a controlled substance at Santa Cruz Superior Court.
Deputy district attorney Rafael Vazquez submitted a revised complaint to specify that the manslaughter charge be involuntary rather than voluntary, before her attorney told the court that Tichelman would be pleading guilty to all charges.
In 2013, Forrest Timothy Hayes was found dead aboard his 50ft yacht in Santa Cruz Small Craft Harbour, California, after Tichelman administered the dose of heroin that killed him.
The pair had met several times before Hayes’s death.
A surveillance video from the harbour showed Tichelman attempting to revive Hayes as he slipped into unconsciousness, as well as sipping her wine, gathering her belongings and lowering a blind before she left the body without calling for help.
“There was an obvious reaction that showed she didn’t intend to kill,” said Vazquez.
Tichelman was arrested in 2014, eight months after Hayes’s death. Defence lawyer Larry Biggam said that she would be credited with the year she had already spent in prison.
Biggam said: “It was an accidental overdose between two consenting adults.”
Tichelman also pleaded guilty to destroying or concealing evidence and engaging and agreeing to engage in prostitution.
Hayes, an executive at the Google X research lab, was married and had five children. The charges were filed despite objections from his family, who feared further embarrassment. The family were represented by an attorney at the hearing.Reuse content