East Deer man accused in wife's killing waives preliminary hearing

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An East Deer man charged with killing his wife and dumping her body following a fight about a possible affair waived his preliminary hearing this morning.

Thomas Clark, 50, faces a Sept. 24 formal arraignment on charges of homicide, tampering with evidence and abuse of a corpse in the July death of his wife, Jill Clark.

Ms. Clark did not report to work at the U.S. Postal Service on July 2 and did not call to notify anyone of her absence, an action that police said was not typical of her.

Homicide detectives wrote in a criminal complaint that the couple's son, Edwin Clark, told them he grew suspicious when his mother did not report for work the day after she fought with her husband.

On July 5, police said, Mr. Clark threatened suicide and detectives found him in a wooded area of Deer Lakes Park with heroin, syringes, and a cut on one of his wrists.

It was after that, detectives wrote, that Mr. Clark agreed to speak with them about his wife. Mr. Clark told detectives he was working on their car in the garage of their home when he confronted her about an ongoing affair that he previously thought Ms. Clark had ended so they could work on their marriage, according to the complaint.

After a confrontation that included shoving, slapping and verbal insults, Mr. Clark hit his wife in the head with a floor jack two or three times, police wrote.

The complaint quotes Mr. Clark as saying that staring at his wife's remains was "the most horrifying thing imaginable" and that he wrapped her in plastic wrap and tape, deposited her body in some woods not far from the Plum police station and then went from one municipality to another dumping her clothing and the plastic.

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Liz Navratil: lnavratil@post-gazette.com, 412-263-1438 or on Twitter @LizNavratil.


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