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A Virginia teen has been arrested after police say he killed his elderly father and buried him in the backyard.
Philip Nguyen, 19, was arrested and charged with second-degree murder for the death of his father Truman Nguyen, 78, according to a press release from the Fairfax County Police Department. Police say Philip Nguyen stabbed his father to death before burning his body and burying it in the backyard.
Truman Nguyen was last seen on Sept. 5.
“On Monday, Sept. 6, a wife reported that her husband, Truman Nguyen, 78, of Falls Church, had been missing since the previous day,” the release stated. “At the time of the report, officers searched the residence and backyard. Officers found no signs of foul play or anything to indicate Truman Nguyen was in danger.”
According to police, the Major Crime Bureau Missing Persons Squad took over the case and received information that there may have been foul play involved in Nguyen’s disappearance.
“They quickly contacted Truman Nguyen’s son, Philip, who resides at the home with the family,” the release states. “Based on information from multiple sources, detectives believed Truman Nguyen could be deceased and buried in the family’s backyard.”
When detectives returned to the Nguyen home on Sept. 9, they found the missing man’s body buried on the property.
“It’s very scary and creepy,” neighbor Silvia Albert told Washington D.C.’s NBC 4 News. “I’m wordless. I saw the young man not too long ago working in his yard.”
The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner said that Nguyen was stabbed to death.
“Through the results from the autopsy, detectives believe that the cause of Truman Nguyen’s death was from multiple stab wounds to the upper body,” according to the release. “Detectives found evidence to indicate Philip Nguyen burnt the body prior to burying his father in the backyard.”
Police have not indicated what motivated the man’s murder.
“It’s just beyond the pale and beyond my imagination that someone would actually do that,” neighbor Tony Albert told NBC 4.
At a press conference outside the Nguyen home, Fairfax County Major Crimes Bureau Chief Ed O’Carroll stated that law enforcement had been called to the residence previously.
“We have been at this residence before - numerous occasions – for various calls for service,” O’Carroll told reporters. “Not very recently, but they have included domestic disputes and domestic-related incidents.”
Neighbors also confirmed the allegations of domestic violence in the Nguyen home.
“They had classic, knock-down, drag-out fights in that house that we’ve heard for years and years and years,” said neighbor Sherry Garay to Washington D.C.’s Fox 5. “So when people did hear screaming on Sunday, nobody called the police that I’m aware of… people heard screaming, and we’re pretty sure that’s when it happened.”
Fairfax County Police Chief Kevin Davis acknowledged the rise of domestic-related homicides at the press conference.
“This is the fifth time in 2021 where a father or a mother or a sister — for the fifth time in 2021 — has been murdered by a son or a brother,” said Davis. “On four separate occasions in 2021, we have homicide victims whose lives have been taken by sons or the brother. A disturbing trend indeed.”
Philip Nguyen was booked into the Fairfax County Adult Attention Center without bond.
Police say this is Fairfax County’s 18th homicide in 2021 — compared to six in 2020.
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