The Utah Department of Corrections said it plans to monitor convicted killer Mark Hacking's mail after an alleged confession and even moustache hair from the notorious wife-killer appeared on an online auction site specializing in so-called "murderabilia."
A letter purported to be from Hacking appeared last week on the Web site DaisySeven.com, which specializes in true-crime collectibles. Andy Kahan, a crime victim advocate in the Houston mayor's office, tracks the sale of what has been termed "murderabilia" and called attention to Hacking's letter online.
"We'll monitor all of his letters that are coming in and out and make sure he's not directing this," Corrections spokeswoman Angie Welling said in response.
Hacking is serving a six-years-to-life sentence for the 2004 murder of his wife, Lori. He admitted to shooting her and dumping her body in the garbage. He claimed she had disappeared while jogging. Her body was found months later in the Salt Lake Valley landfill. Prosecutors said he killed her after she had unveiled his web of lies.
DaisySeven.com touted the letter as being a confession from Hacking, including details about his sex life with Lori. On Monday, it was selling for $24. A posting on the Web site said operators of the auction do not give interviews.
This is not the first time Hacking has gotten in trouble over sending autographed items to Internet auction sites publicizing his notoriety as a killer. The Deseret News reported in 2006 that Hacking admitted to sending out autographed scraps of paper, inmate forms, magazine covers and hand tracings to a pair of Internet auction sites. Hacking was confronted by the prison warden and admitted to doing it but was not disciplined over it.
Utah has a law making it a civil penalty for criminals to profit from their crimes. Crime-victim advocates have been pushing for a federal "Notoriety for Profit Law" to prevent killers from selling their wares through third parties on the Internet.
Welling said they would investigate if Hacking voluntarily sent off items to be auctioned on DaisySeven.com, but will immediately begin monitoring Hacking's mail and phone calls to ensure he is not directing it.
"We can stop him from directing it or profiting from it," she said. "We can only control his actions. It's unfortunate if someone on the outside is doing this, but there's not a lot we can do about that."
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