Documents confirm News 3 investigation into discovery of AJ Hadsell’s body

Posted at 1:35 PM, May 04, 2017
and last updated 2017-05-04 18:51:14-04

NORFOLK, Va. - A first look at unsealed court documents confirms a News 3 investigation that detectives used tracking data, stored inside a GPS taken from Wesley Hadsell's work van, to find his adopted daughter's body.

Back in 2015, News 3 sources said that when they examined that data, it led them directly to a house on Smiths Ferry Road in Southampton County.

There, on April 9, Norfolk Police, and other agents assisting them, found human remains later identified as those of Anjelica “AJ” Hadsell.

She had been missing a month and was the subject of a massive search.

According to court documents obtained by News 3 on Thursday, then-Detective Hathaway said Hadsell's work van, which Hadsell had sole possession of during the time that AJ went missing, up until March 20, 2015, contained several items including a shovel with dirt residue, a pair of black work gloves, also with dirt residue, and a roll of duct tape with dirt residue.

Documents say a GPS was recovered from the work van, and when the GPS was analyzed, it was revealed that on March 4, 2015, the GPS unit was behind an abandoned residence located at 34160 Smiths Ferry Road for approximately 20 minutes.

The documents also reveal more about the last day AJ was seen alive.

Detective Hathaway said that 7-Eleven surveillance video showed Hadsell's truck driving northbound on Halprin Drive, around 7:01 a.m. The video then showed Hadsell's truck driving southbound at 7:07 a.m.

Documents say that Halprin Drive passes in front of the store and is the primary route to and from Millard Street.

He told Detective Hathaway that he had driven his struck to Millard Street, where AJ lived, to drop the truck off for AJ. Then, he picked up his work van and drove it work in Norfolk.

Detective Hathaway said that after interviewing Hadsell's coworkers, he learned that Hadsell left work around noon.

Hadsell's truck was captured on surveillance video again, driving northbound on Halprin Drive.

Documents show that Hadsell's employer texted him at 12:51 p.m. saying "where are you?"

The surveillance video once again showed Hadsell's work van driving southbound on Halprin Drive, around 1:37 p.m., and about a minute later, he texted his employer saying, "My daughter met me needed money."

Detective Hathaway said that a coworker reported Hadsell in a "highly agitated state" when he returned to work around 2 p.m. and asked for the remainder of the day off.

Detectives confirmed with AJ's mother that when she left her home on Millard Street on the morning of March 2, 2015, that AJ was the only one in the home.

Two days after her disappearance, documents show that detectives interviewed Hadsell.

He said the last time he saw AJ was at 12:30 p.m., on March 2nd, where he gave her $200 at the gas station located on Tidewater Drive past Lindenwood Avenue.

A detective went to to that location, the One Stop Food Mart, and viewed surveillance video. Documents say it did not show the meeting that Hadsell described, nor did it show any vehicles known to be operated by Wesley or AJ Hadsell.

In all of News 3's interviews with Hadsell, he always denied having anything to do with AJ's disappearance and death.

Hadsell did admit to News 3 back in June 2015 that he was in Southampton County the day after AJ was last seen.

He said he was working for Quality Plumbing and Mechanical and was in Franklin on a job, but say she was never at that specific house on Smiths Ferry Road.

However, it's important to note, to this day, Hadsell has never been charged with AJ's death.

The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner officially ruled that AJ died from acute heroin poisoning.

Documents show at one time, they thought she died from homicidal violence.

Hadsell is currently in prison, serving a 20-year sentence for a federal ammunition charge.

Earlier in 2016, Hadsell was also indicted on rape and abduction charges in Ohio, an alleged incident that happened back in 2005.