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Serving time for murder in NC, woman found guilty for link to Texas body dump

August 21, 2018

Laura Ackerson

A woman serving a second-degree murder sentence in North Carolina could see additional time tacked on after a conviction in Texas this week.

A Wake County jury found Amanda Hayes guilty in 2014 for her role in the death of her husband’s ex-girlfriend, Laura Ackerson, whose dismembered remains were found in a Texas creek.

Hayes was found guilty Tuesday in Texas of tampering with physical evidence, a link to Ackerson’s dismemberment.

Both Hayes and her husband, Grant Hayes, were charged with murdering Ackerson, and they pointed the finger at each other in separate trials. Prosecutors said the Hayeses wanted to “erase” Ackerson, the mother of Grant Hayes’ two young sons.

Amanda Hayes’ defense was that she was manipulated by her husband, and that it was him who killed Ackerson, cut up her body, put it in coolers and carried it in a U-Haul trailer without his wife knowing.

She testified that she found out Ackerson had died while at her sister’s home in Richmond, Texas, where Grant Hayes coerced her into both admitting to the crime and helping him find a place to dump the remains.

She only helped, she said, out of fear of what he might do to her, his 2- and 3-year-old boys and her 1-month-old and 22-year-old daughters.

Given the condition of her body when it was found, the North Carolina chief medical examiner was unable to determine a specific cause of death. An autopsy showed a sharp puncture wound to the fourth cervical vertebra as well as crushed thyroid cartilage consistent with some type of blunt force trauma to the neck.

Amanda Hayes’ Texas conviction is punishable by up to 20 years in prison. Her North Carolina sentence runs through Sept. 2025.

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