St Lucie Sheriff calls Oleander homicides Cardiac Karma

St Lucie Sheriff calls Oleander homicides Cardiac Karma

St Lucie CountySheriff Mascara provided updates on the Oleander Avenue Homicides and Kathy Whatley Homicide.

He announced today that these two homicide cases are closed.

Oleander homicides

According to Sheriff Mascara, on February 28th, detectives investigated three dead bodies found within a mile of each other in the Oleander Avenue corridor.

At 9:50 a.m. deputies responded to a single car crash at the intersection of Oleander Avenue and Beach Avenue. They found Melvin “Chip” Anderson.  Anderson was transported to a local hospital where he died.

Chip Anderson

Chip Anderson

“We have previously released that Chip Anderson died as a result of natural causes,” said Sheriff Ken J. Mascara. “Toxicology results have returned and indicated no presence of drugs or alcohol and his final cause of death has been ruled a heart attack.”

At 9:58 a.m., deputies responded to 606 Ash Avenue and found 56-year old Gabriele Reusch Legg dead inside the garage.

Gabriele Reusch Legg

Gabriele Reusch Legg


“Her cause of death has been contributed to multiple stab wounds,” Mascara said.

Gabriele Legg was the aunt of Chip Anderson through marriage.

“Our investigation has concluded that Chip worked for Gabriele in her painting business and was the primary figure in Chip Anderson’s life,” Mascara said. “We don’t believe there was any sort of romantic relationship between them, but it’s clear that Gabriele was very important to Chip.”

The last known interaction with Gabriele and anyone other than Chip was February 19th.  It is our believed that she was killed around that date.

The third victim in this case is 70-year-old

Gary Boice

Gary Boice

.  Boice and Legg were in a relationship. They were in the process of moving in together into Boice’s home at 6816 Shelley Terrace.

“Boice was found dead in his home on Shelley Terrace that same morning killed as a result of multiple gunshot wounds,” Mascara said. “Chip Anderson was seen leaving Boice’s home on the morning of the 28th in Boice’s car. It was in that car that Chip Anderson had a heart attack and died.”

According to the Sheriff, detectives found a .45 caliber Glock handgun on Anderson’s body. Ballistics analysis has matched this gun to the casings found at Boice’s home.

“Based on the analysis of evidence collected and statements received by friends, family and witnesses, it is our conclusion that Chip Anderson was angry about Gabriele and Gary moving in together, killed both of them and then died himself while trying to flee the area that morning,” Mascara said.

The second investigation to be closed dates back to September 8, 2017.

According to Sheriff Mascara, on Friday morning, September 8 at approximately 4:30 a.m. deputies were called to River Park Marina located at 500 East Prima Vista Blvd.

Whatley Car in River

Whatley Car in River

“A caller advised 9-1-1 that a car was partially submerged in the St. Lucie River and that an individual was laying on the ground nearby and was unconscious,” Mascara said. “Lying next to the person was a hammer covered in blood.”

The bloody hammer

The bloody hammer

That individual was transported by Fire Rescue to a local hospital and treated for severe injuries.

The individual died as a result of those injuries on Saturday, September 9th.

Kathie Whatley

Kathie Whatley

“Our investigation led us to identify this individual as 67-year-old Kathie Whatley, a resident of Port St. Lucie, and confirmed that the vehicle found in the River was owned by Whatley,” Mascara said. “At the time, we were told that Whatley had left a friend’s home around 12:30 a.m. that morning with her 40-year-old son Lance Whatley.”

Lance Whatley

Lance Whatley

Lance was known to have chronic mental health issues and was anxious that night due to the impending storm.  He and Kathie Whatley were known to always be together.

Lance Whatley was not found with Kathie that morning. SLCSO asked for the public’s help in finding him throughout Hurricane Irma.

“On Wednesday, September 13th, while the waters from Hurricane Irma were receding, Port St. Lucie Police were called to Rivergate Park for a body in the water,” Mascara said. “The body was in a decomposing state.  It was also missing a head and both hands, most likely from exposure to the elements and Hurricane Irma, making identification extremely difficult.”

According to the Sheriff, knowing about the investigation of Kathie Whatley and the fact that Lance was still missing, PSLPD notified Sheriff’s detectives of the body and the agency proceeded with tissue and DNA analysis to try and link the body with Lance Whatley.

“Over the course of the last several months, additional DNA analysis was conducted and not only confirmed that the body found in the river was that of Lance Whatley, but that it matched DNA found inside Kathie Whatley’s car,” Mascara said. “It was also concluded through extensive forensic processing that Kathie and Lance Whatley were the only two inside the car the morning of September 8th.”

According to the Sheriff, Kathie Whatley was determined to have died from blunt force trauma to the head. Lance Whatley was concluded to have died from suicide by drowning.

“Based on the evidence collected and the statements received by people who knew Kathie and Lance Whatley, it is our conclusion that Lance Whatley was in a manic and anxiety-riddled state the night of September 7th and he and Kathie left together to drive around in an attempt to calm him,” Mascara said. “They ended up at River Park Marina where an argument took place.  Lance struck Kathie with a hammer, ultimately killing her. Then he drove her car into the river.  He fell out of the driver seat and was carried downstream by the current and drowned.”

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