He became an Internet celebrity after using a hatchet to stop a homicidal man who claimed he was Jesus from killing innocent people, but now it appears the tables have turned on Caleb McGillvary.
McGillvary, better known as Kai the Hatched Wielding Hitchhiker, is wanted in the homicide of Joseph Galfy, a lawyer who was found dead in his New Jersey home May 13. WABC reported the cause of death as blunt force trauma.
In a press conference Thursday morning, Union County prosecutor Theodore Romankow said McGillvary is believed to have has cut his hair short in an attempt to conceal his identity and is considered "armed and dangerous", the Star-Ledger writes. A $5,000 reward has been announced for information leading to his arrest.
A motive in the murder has not been announced, but Mashable notes that a cryptic status update on what appears to be McGillvary's Facebook page may hold clues about what prompted the "dark turn" in the viral celebrity's story:
In a Thursday afternoon press conference, Romankow said that Galfy had picked up McGillvary in Times Square May 11 and that the 24-year-old hitchhiker had spent the night at the attorney's house before leaving for Asbury Park, according to Woodbridge Patch.
The murder accusations come about three months after McGillvary's interview with Fresno Fox affiliate KMPH catapulted him to minor fame. In it, the homeless hitchhiker gives an idiosyncratic account of a bizarre incident where a suspect allegedly ran down a utility worker with his car and turned on a female bystander.
"A guy that big can snap a woman's neck like a pencil stick," McGillvary said in his now-famous interview with KMPH (below, NSFW language). "So I f--king ran up behind him with a hatchet. Smash, smash, SUH-MASH!"
McGillvary's intervention kept the suspect occupied until police arrived, ABC affiliate KFSN reported at the time.
The interview won McGillvary national attention. He would go on to make a guest appearance on "Jimmy Kimmel Live!"
Those with information about McGillvary are urged to contact Union County Crime Stoppers at (908) 654-TIPS (8477), www.uctip.org or text UCTIP plus a message to 274637.