Avalara Taxrates > Blog > Sales Tax News > Sales Taxes and Murder: What Do They Have In Common? - Avalara

Sales Taxes and Murder: What Do They Have In Common?


Sales Taxes and Murder: What do they have in common? According to Florida's Orlando Sentinal, David Lee Hedrick.

In October, 2011, Hedrick was convicted of sales tax fraud. “A Seminole County jury had found him guilty of selling Tishman Hotel Corp., the owner of the Swan and Dolphin hotels at Walt Disney World, $764,000 worth of televisions in 2007, collecting $72,000 in sales tax but failing to turn it over to the state.”

Hedrick was “…sentenced Nov. 21 to 15 years probation” for sales tax fraud and was required to provide a sample of his DNA upon conviction. That DNA sample led to the Seminole County Sheriff’s Office cracking a 20-year old murder case.

Twenty years ago, Betty Clair Foster, of Altamonte Springs, Florida, worked alone as a receptionist at a computer store near Casselberry. Her body was found around 4:30 pm on the afternoon of January 31, 1991 by a customer. Apparently, the “…crime scene analysts took blood samples from the computer store that was the murder scene.  Eleven years later, an analyst at Wuestoff Laboratory found DNA in five samples.” The Orlando Sentinal reports that “The Sheriff’s Office was notified Dec. 30 that Hedrick’s DNA matched DNA found in those five blood samples taken from the crime scene in 1991.”

Though the “why” of Betty Foster’s murder hasn’t been answered, it appears the “who” has finally been solved. It goes to show that sales tax fraud doesn’t pay and may cause old wounds to come back to haunt you.


Avalara Author
Susan McLain
Avalara Author Susan McLain
Susan McLain began her career as a technical writer in technology industries such as satellite networking and medical devices. Her skills encompass technical and marketing writing, usability engineering, verification and validation testing and protocol writing, requirements development, business analysis, technical illustration/graphic design and marketing. She has owned her own business providing service to small to medium sized business and in other positions, she has been in project management, documentation and marketing. She is currently the content specialist for Avalara helping to “make sales tax less taxing.”