SANTA CRUZ (KRON) — Detectives on Tuesday announced the arrest of a Folsom woman police say is a high-end prostitute in connection with the murder of a man found dead on his yacht last November.
Alix Catherine Tichelman, 26, is suspected of injecting the 51-year-old male victim with a lethal dose of heroin and then sipping wine as the man lay dying.
The death was discovered on Nov. 23, when Santa Cruz police detectives were called to the scene of a suspicious death on a vessel parked at B-dock in the Santa Cruz Small Craft Harbor.
Tichelman was identified as a suspect in the case after it was learned that she had an ongoing prostitution relationship with the victim. Tichelman met with the victim on the night of his death, Clark said.
The victim died of a heroin overdose as a result of the injection provided by Tichelman, according to Deputy Chief Steve Clark
Security footage from the victim’s yacht shows him suffering medical complications and going unconscious. “Rather than provide first aid or call 911, Tichelman proceeds to gather her belongings including the heroin and needles,” police said.
“The video also shows Tichelman stepping over the victim’s body several times as she is gathering her belongings. At one point, she steps over the body to finish a glass of wine. Finally, she leaves the boat and reaches back in to lower a blind and conceal the victim’s body from outside view.”
Since November, SCPD Detectives have been conducting an intensive investigation to learn the circumstances surrounding the death, and learn more about the suspect.
Detectives said they obtained text messages and emails between Tichelman and her clients, including the victim.
Police detectives said they were concerned she might leave the area so they lured Tichelman back to Santa Cruz by posing as a potential client. She agreed on a price in excess of $1,000 and to meet at an upscale location. Tichelman was arrested on July 4.
SCPD Detectives are looking into Tichelman’s involvement in a separate death investigation with similar circumstances in another state.
On Tichelman’s Facebook page, she lists Sacramento as her hometown and says she majored in journalism at Georgia State University.
“It’s really nice to talk with someone about killing sprees and murdering people in cold blood…and they love it too. No judgement. Yay! (Expletive) all of that positivity (expletive). Take a look around you. Life is hard and then you die,” Tichelman writes on a Facebook post dated June 28.
In interviews with authorities, Tichelman, who works as a “high-priced outcall prostitute,” claimed to have over 200 client relationships and said she meets her clients through a website.
Tichelman was booked into Santa Cruz County Jail on second degree murder, destruction of evidence, and transporting and providing narcotics.
(Copyright 2014, KRON 4, All rights reserved.)