Witness: Tyler Hadley, who is accused of killing his parents, on ecstasy drug

Drug can cause someone to 'lose their mind'

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla - Tyler Hadley, 17, remains on suicide watch at the St. Lucie County Jail. He is accused of murdering his parents, Mary Jo and Blake Hadley, with a hammer last weekend.

A key witness in the case said that Tyler Hadley was high on the drug commonly known as ecstasy at the time of the killing and the hours that followed. The self-described 'best friend' of Hadley said Tyler had taken three 'E' tablets Saturday evening. Police will not comment on the possible state of mind of Hadley.

"I really don't see any motives besides drugs," said Mike Mandell, who spoke exclusively with NewsChannel 5.

Mandell, who identifies as Tyler Hadley's best friend, said he will never forget what he saw inside Hadley's home Saturday evening. Mandell said he witnessed Tyler's father deceased and that Tyler had admitted that he got high and then beat Mary Jo and Blake Hadley to death with a hammer. "He was on ecstasy," said Mandell.

A local medical experts said that is enough 'E' to make someone feel like they are 'losing their mind'. "They initially ascend this stairway to heaven and then descending into hell," said Dr. Scott McFarland, who directs the emergency room at Palm Beach Gardens Medical Center and at other area facilities.

Dr. McFarland said that three tablets of 'E' would substantially elevate the levels of serotonin in the brain. "They can be agitated, confused, sweating, can have a fever. They can have seizures," said McFarland. "They have dilated pupils. They are constantly in motion because it gives you the sense you have to move," he added.

St. Lucie Police Department detectives noted Hadley's demeanor in their affidavit. "Tyler appeared nervous, frantic, and very talkative while speaking to the officers. He also appeared to have a blank stare, and his pupils were very large," wrote Det. Kristin Meyer. "The defendant told MM [Mike Mandell] that he was intending to kill himself by taking 10 percocet pills when law enforcement officers eventually came to his residence," Meyer added.

Dr. McFarland said that taking ecstasy can cause severe hallucinations and can often creates a lack of inhibition in people. McFarland said that can lead to potentially dangerous decisions. "You have no control over your sensorium and you are a danger to yourself and others," he said.

Investigators will not confirm if Tyler Hadley was subjected to a drug test after being taken into custody on Sunday. "We don't want to release too much information too fast, because we don't want to taint the investigation. And a lot of information that we do obtain, we don't share it. We only share it with the prosecution and that way it just builds our case," said Tom Nichols, spokesperson for the Port. St. Lucie Police Department.

According to Tom Nichols, the autopsy for Blake Hadley will be completed by Thursday night.

A funeral service for Mary Jo and Blake Hadley is planned for Saturday at 11 a.m. at St. Lucie Catholic Church, which is just a few miles from their home.

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