On Sunday morning in Franklin Lakes, David Allen Hagal, 60, stands accused of the brutal murder of his 87-year-old father, George J. Hagal. The incident occurred at the family home on Haddon Place, sending shockwaves through the community and leaving investigators grappling with the gruesome details of the crime.
The Gruesome Discovery
Local authorities were alerted to the scene around 7:30 a.m. on Sunday, December 10, when police responded to a distress call from the Haddon Place residence. Upon arrival, they discovered the lifeless body of George J. Hagal, a former Teaneck police officer, who had been brutally attacked.
The initial police report outlined a horrifying sequence of events. David Allen Hagal allegedly assaulted his father by striking him in the head with a metal pipe, stabbing him multiple times, and ultimately drowning him by submerging his head in a bucket of water. The motive behind this heinous act remains unclear, leaving both law enforcement and the community in shock.
Confession and Arrest
Disturbingly, the accused exhibited suicidal behavior following the gruesome act. In an unexpected turn, David Allen Hagal voluntarily went to the police headquarters and confessed to the crime. The confession prompted law enforcement to promptly detain him, leading to his immediate arrest.
The Victim: George J. Hagal’s Legacy
George J. Hagal, a grandfather of six, had recently lost his wife of 63 years in April, adding a layer of tragedy to the family’s recent history. Born and raised in Teaneck, George served four years in the U.S. Marine Corps before dedicating 12 years to the Teaneck Police Department. Following his tenure as a police officer, he transitioned to become the vice president of Carl Mellone & Son, a local wholesale food dealer.
A respected figure in the community, George was not only a former president of PBA Local 86 but also actively involved in the Teaneck Boy Scouts and Little League. The Hagals moved into their Franklin Lakes residence on Haddon Place in 1978, creating a home that would later become the backdrop for this tragic event.
David Allen Hagal now awaits his first appearance in Central Judicial Processing Court in Hackensack. He faces charges of murder, along with illegal possession of the metal pipe and knife used in the assault. The Bergen County Jail currently holds him as the Bergen County Medical Examiner’s Office conducts an autopsy to determine the exact cause of George J. Hagal’s death.
The Franklin Lakes community, shaken by the brutality of this crime, is left grappling with the shock of a family tragedy. The investigation into the motive behind David Allen Hagal’s alleged actions is ongoing, leaving residents with unanswered questions and a sense of vulnerability.
|Sunday, Dec. 10, 2023
|Police respond to a distress call at 552 Haddon Place, Franklin Lakes.
|Discovery of the lifeless body of George J. Hagal.
|David Allen Hagal taken into custody at the scene.
|The younger Hagal confesses to the crime at the police headquarters.
|Autopsy initiated by the Bergen County Medical Examiner’s Office.
|David Allen Hagal charged with murder and illegal possession of weapons.
|Bergen County Prosecutor’s Major Crimes Unit leads the patricide investigation.
|Collaboration with borough police, Medical Examiner’s Office, and Sheriff’s Bureau of Criminal Identification.
|Pending Court Date
|David Allen Hagal remains in Bergen County Jail awaiting first court appearance.
|Charges include murder, possession of a metal pipe, and possession of a knife.
|Concurrently, other violent incidents reported in Ocean City and Hackensack River.
|A 46-year-old man charged with murdering his mother in Ocean City.
|Separate homicide investigation opened after a body found in the Hackensack River.
The Bergen County Prosecutor’s Major Crimes Unit is leading the investigation into this patricide case, working in collaboration with borough police, the Medical Examiner’s Office, and the Bergen County Sheriff’s Bureau of Criminal Identification. The goal is to piece together the events that led to the tragic death of George J. Hagal.
Other Weekend Incidents
Sadly, the incident in Franklin Lakes was not the only violent event in the region during that fateful weekend. In Ocean City, a 46-year-old man was charged with murdering his mother, claiming he suffered from mental illness. Additionally, a separate homicide investigation was initiated after a body was discovered in the Hackensack River.
A: David Allen Hagal faces charges of murder, along with illegal possession of the weapons used in the assault – a metal pipe and a knife.
A: The Bergen County Prosecutor’s Major Crimes Unit is actively investigating the case, collaborating with local authorities and relevant agencies.
A: The motive behind the alleged patricide remains unclear, and investigators are diligently working to understand the events leading up to the tragic incident.