A Texas man is facing a murder charge after confessing to strangling his girlfriend to death and putting her body in a dumpster.
37-year-old Paul Adams is being detained for murdering Robin Hatcher. She had been reportedly missing since August 2019. Paul faces a first-degree murder charge and an additional felony charge of tampering with a human corpse.
Paul confessed to the killing on April 3, 2020, after a missing person investigation by Austin police detectives that began focusing on Paul as a primary suspect last fall.
Robin Hatcher was reported missing by her daughter in August 2019 after having not seen or heard from her for two weeks. The police department had issued two notices requesting the public’s assistance in locating Robin that were published in local media outlets.
Unfortunately, the exposure didn’t bring in any tips, which police described as “unusual.”
Three days after the initial request for assistance was issued, Paul showed up at the police station saying he was the last person who had seen Robin after he left their apartment following a breakup.
Detectives then obtained a warrant to search through Robin’s phone records through AT&T, which showed that the phone had been used to call Paul’s mother and an Austin pawn shop after the date Robin was last seen. At the shop, investigators found that Paul had pawned Robin’s phone.
Police then obtained a search warrant for Paul’s phone records through T-Mobile. Those records showed that in the days after Robin’s disappearance, Paul placed calls to the prepaid debit card company Netspend and the Texas Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) Program, which delivers food stamps and assistance to recipients.
Records at the Texas Office of Inspector General showed that while Paul had no benefits account, Robin did, and it had been used for four purchases at convenience stores in the days following her disappearance. Police obtained surveillance footage from a 7-Eleven that showed Robin using Hatcher’s card.
On Thursday, Adams made contact with an Austin police officer who was responding to a 911 call and reported that he had been involved in a murder related to Hatcher’s missing person case.
In an interview with investigators, Adams told police he and Hatcher had been in an argument on the last night he had seen her. Adams said he left their apartment briefly to visit a convenience store, returned and found her dead on the bed. He then placed her body in a bag to take to a dumpster “because he believed that he would be blamed for her death,” police said in his arrest affidavit.
The next day, Adams contacted police again saying, “I actually did the homicide and know I have problems,” according to his arrest affidavit.
He explained that he and Hatcher had been using drugs that night and, in the midst of the argument, he put his hands around her neck and choked her, then put a pillow over her face “to make sure.”
Adams was then arrested and taken to the Travis County Jail, where he is being held on a $1 million bond for his two charges.