PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — The man charged in the gruesome murder and dismemberment of his mother and step-father last December has been ordered to stand trial.
The suspect was in court Wednesday for a hearing where officials provided chilling testimony and surveillance video was shown.
One of the surveillance tapes is from Dec. 15, just 10 days before Christmas.
Frederick Harris III approaches the clerk at the Home Depot in East Liberty with three garbage cans for purchase. Two days before that, relatives told police his mother had been putting up an artificial Christmas tree; but that tree was never completed.
As Harris leaves the store, he waits for another car that’s backing out with their purchases, and then Harris takes his three garbage cans and goes on his way.
No one at that point pays much attention to Harris.
But the very next day, Penn Hills Police are asked by relatives to do a welfare check at his home since no one had heard from Olivia or Lamar Gilbert for a while.
At first they saw nothing outside that was alarming, but once inside, they found Harris under a comforter in bed. He would not speak with police.
As they continued their search, body parts were discovered in six of seven garbage cans.
A male torso in one, the hip and genitals of a female in another, the remains of a man from waist to knees in another, two heads in another, bent knives and the lower leg of a female in another, and hands and feet of both victims in another.
Family members of the victims listened to the testimony and said nothing to reporters after the hearing.
A detective testified that Harris’s fingerprints were found on the garbage bags and a note was found on him.
It read: “Thanks for house sitting and fixing up the place while we were on vacation. See you soon, tell everyone hello. P.S. Don’t answer the door for anyone.”
A relative told police the note was not written in the hand of the victims, but rather in the hand of Harris.
Harris’s trial may not begin until late this year or early next year.