Calvin Hodges had discovered the headless body at the edge of his sweet cornfield. He calmly called the Colby Police Department. Accommodating and friendly, the sixty-seven-year-old man displayed patience when officers and detectives arrived. Yet his agitation swelled when CSI cordoned off a larger area of his field and dirt driveway. Then they presented him with a search warrant and taped off a bulk of the cornfield to look for the dead man's head. Later, Calvin Hodges fully embraced his anger when they told him not to water the corn until the crime scene investigation concluded. "Ah, the hell with ya," he muttered as he stomped away. "Lemme know when I can take care of my damn crop."
Detectives determined the killer had dumped the male victim's body during nighttime hours. He wore a white windbreaker, a gray University of Pennsylvania tee-shirt, black biker-shorts, white socks, and sneakers. A silver watch, two silver rings, a brown leather-string bracelet, and black leather wallet remained in his possession. The wallet contained one hundred seventeen dollars, three recent receipts, nine business cards, one packaged condom, and his driver's license. His name was Maxwell Thornton.
The twenty-eight-year-old man had rented a summer home at Lake Harmony. Maxwell was often spotted biking around the lake or along Route 903. He was last seen traveling east along the state highway at seven in the evening on July Fourth. A jogger discovered his bike near Tunkhannok Creek off Route 903 and Brier Crest Road, three miles from the home rental. Signs of a struggle did not exist. The absence of blood on the ground and bike confused investigators.
Blood wasn't found at the cornfield. The blood on the collar of the shirt and neck area suggested Maxwell had been beheaded and drained upside down. The lack of footprints, undisturbed environment, and the condition of the clothes indicated the killer had dropped the body at the scene. There was no recovery of DNA evidence not belonging to Maxwell. Despite extensive searches, no one found Maxwell's head.
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