Black Mountain Police Department

Law Enforcement Incident Report & Conclusion

M.R.S. Number
238475
Black Mountain P.D. Complaint Number
8940583

INCIDENT DATA
Incident Type BODY FOUND
Address of Occurance 134 KHAKI CAMPBELL WAY
BLACK MOUNTAIN, NORTH CAROLINA
How Received CALL TO DISPATCH
Type of Premise RESIDENCE
Copies to MUNI COURT
Occured From UNKNOWN
Date Reported 08/29/15
Ocfficer Assaulted or Killed NO
Reporting Office Black Mountain PD

Arrival Time
Time of Call
GEO Code
Processed by

1505 HRS
1445 HRS
4450
CPL WALKER

REPORTING PARTY
Sex
SSN

MALE
Place of Birth
123-34-4567

NC

Sex
SSN

FEMALE Place of Birth
445-90-2272

NC

Sex
SSN

MALE
Place of Birth
445-90-2272

NC

Name
WILLIS, BILLY
Race
AFRICAN AMERICAN
Date of Birth
08/14/77
Home Address
170 A SAND PIPER LANE
Occupation
OWNER OF MAMA’S ATTIC STORAGE COMPANY

VICTIM

Name
VANDERHORST, MARIA
Race
WHITE
Date of Birth
02/20/75
Home Address
32 WALLABY ST
Occupation
HEAD CHEF AT THE NY PORCH

KNOWN SUSPECT

Name
LEFOY, ROBERT & FORSYTH, THOMAS EVAN
Suspect Status
ADULT ARREST
Race
WHITE & WHITE
Relation
COWORKERS

OVERVIEW OF THE CASE

During the summer of 2000, 25 year-old Maria Vanderhorst disappeared on her way to her family’s vacation home in Charleston, South Carolina. Maria left her apartment in New York City before dawn on May 28th, 2000 hoping to make it to Charleston before
sunset. When she did not arrive that evening her family began to worry and called the cops. A missing persons report was filed two
days later. On August 29th 2015, the body of a 25 year-old female was found in a storage unit in Black Mountain, North Carolina. The
medical examiner identified the body as Maria Vanderhorst. Maria’s co-worker, Robert Lefoy, and her boyfriend, Thomas Evan Forsyth,
III, were taken into custody as suspects.

CRIME SCENE

The owner of the Mama’s Attic Storage Company, Billy Willis, 38 years old, found the body in the trunk of GMC pickup truck
in a storage unit. The lease on the unit had expired and Willis opened the locker to take inventory for an upcoming auction. A Ramona
Whaley signed the lease for the storage unit on August 10th, 2000 and had paid for the unit a year in advance every year until 2015.

The body was identified as Maria Vanderhorst. Police determined the victim had been killed elsewhere. The body was badly
decayed and wrapped in a plastic sheet. Vanderhorst appeared to have a crushed hyoid bone and the medical examiner confirmed the
cause of death to be manual strangulation. No blood was found at the scene. DNA from skin underneath the victim’s nails matched
Robert Lefoy.

SUSPECTS

Police identified Robert Lefoy as the prime suspect in the case based on the DNA match to the skin found under the victim’s
fingernails. Lefoy and the victim both worked at The Ripe Grape, a restaurant in New York City. Lefoy introduced Vanderhost to her
boyfriend Thomas Evan Forsyth, III. Forsyth became a suspect when police discovered the GMC truck was registered to his father. Lefoy and Forsyth were originally from Black Mountain, North Carolina but left after the death of Lefoy’s grandmother Ramona Whaley.
Lefoy and Forsyth had grown up together in Black Mountain and moved to New York to make it big in the restaurant industry. The two
had dreams of working for the best chefs in New York City.

EVIDENCE

The police collected a large amount of forensic evidence against the two suspects, who are now on trial for the murder of
Maria Vanderhost. DNA found under the nails of Vanderhost matched that of Lefoy. Several hairs and fibers were found on the plastic
sheet. The hairs had been ripped out and DNA testing revealed the hairs to match both suspects. The fibers appeared to be from blue
carpet found in 1985 Ford Bronco. Forsyth owned a 1985 Ford Bronco at the time of the victim’s disappearance.

The name on the storage unit rental agreement, Ramona Whaley, was that of Lefoy’s grandmother who was known to be
deceased. Investigators traced the bank account used to pay for the unit to Lefoy. The truck inside the unit was registered to Forsyth’s
father and had been listed as stolen on June 11th, 2000.

CONCLUSION

Based on the evidence, Robert Lefoy and Thomas Evan Forsyth, III are guilty of the murder of Maria Vanderhost. There is
overwhelming forensic evidence linking the two men to the murder. Hairs and DNA from both men were found on the body. The storage unit in which the body was found can be traced back to Lefoy. The truck inside the unit can be traced back to Forsyth. It appears
that Lefoy and Forsyth killed Vanderhost after learning she had been selected as the head chef for a new restaurant in New York City
over Lefoy. The men believed with Vanderhost out of the way, Lefoy would take the position and the two could realize their dream. The
dream only lasted 15 years and now the men will spend the rest of their lives in prison.

CITY OF
BLACK MOUNTAIN,
NORTH CAROLINA