Son of Ex-Bush Aide Due in Court on Hatchet Murder Charge
ROCKVILLE, Md. — The son of a disgraced former aide to President George W. Bush told police in Maryland that he killed a man with a hatchet in a dispute over drug sales, according to documents charging him with first-degree murder.
Claude A. Allen III, 20, remained in custody Tuesday as his attorneys waived his right to a bond review hearing in the slaying of a man at his Gaithersburg home last week.
Montgomery County police say in charging documents that Allen called 911 shortly after midnight Friday to report that he had killed a man who had tried to break into his house. Police officers who came to the home followed a trail of bloody footprints from the garage to the woods outside, where they say they found the body of 25-year-old Michael Phillip Harvey.
Allen initially told police that he had been attacked by a man with a hatchet and had wrestled the weapon away, but he “ultimately confessed to having a disagreement” over drug sales and to slashing an unarmed Harvey multiple times, the police documents say. Though Allen had said the killing occurred during a burglary attempt, police said they concluded that no break-in occurred and that the two men knew each other.
One of Allen’s lawyers declined to discuss the case in any detail.
“We’re just getting involved … and we have a lot of work to do in order to investigate and represent our client,” attorney Richard Finci said.
Police say another man who was home at the time told officers that Allen came into the kitchen from the garage with bloody hands. The man said Allen told him that he had just “got the person” who was robbing him. The man, identified only as “Witness 1,” told police that he helped Allen hide the victim’s body in a trash can before running out of the house and calling 911.
Allen’s father, also named Claude Allen, was a former domestic policy adviser in the Bush White House whose political career imploded when he pleaded guilty to theft, admitting that he made phony returns at discount department stores.
A court hearing in Rockville, Md., is scheduled for next month for the younger Allen.
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