Woman Behind Bars For Staging Murder-Suicide After Killing Mom & Sister

Police spent nearly 16 months investigating the case before making an arrest.

November 13, 2018

Megan Hargan [Fairfax County Police Department]

Megan Hargan [Fairfax County Police Department]

By: Aaron Rasmussen

MCLEAN, VA — A woman is under arrest for allegedly fatally shooting her mom and sister in their heads and then trying to cover up the crimes by staging the scene to look like a murder-suicide.

On November 9, almost 16 months after the deaths, Megan Hargan, 35, was taken into custody after a traffic stop in Monongalia County, West Virginia, where she had moved with her six-year-old daughter.

On July 14, 2017, Hargan claimed she discovered the the bodies of her mom, Pamela Denise Hargan, 63, and her sister, Helen Lorena Hargan, 23, in an upstairs bedroom and a laundry room at the family’s home, according to the Fairfax Police Department.

A rifle was found next to Hargan’s sibling in the bedroom, while shell casings were scattered near their mom downstairs, indicating a possible murder-suicide.

“It was made to look one way,” Major Ed O'Carroll of the Fairfax County police said at a press conference. “Our detectives are smart, and we realized that that necessarily wasn’t the case, and we followed up on every lead.”

After the shootings, police media officials did not correct an initial report that stated the deaths were a case of murder-suicide, suggesting authorities didn’t want to tip the real killer off that staging the crime scene failed to work.

“Investigative strategy . . . is of the utmost importance,” noted Carroll.

The Fairfax County police spent 16 months investigating the case and interviewed Hargan twice.

"Oh, yeah, there’s never been any question. I believed from day one that she did it," said Hargan’s aunt and her late mom’s sister, Tammy North. "I’ve known that it was coming, and now it's here. It was like it all blew up in your face.”

Indicating a possible motive, Carroll said the alleged killer, who had access to the elder victim’s passwords, “attempted fraudulent money transfers from her mother's [bank] account on the day of the murders as well as the day before.”

Hargan has been charged with two counts of first-degree murder and two counts of using a firearm in the commission of a felony.

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