University of Missouri Police name Timothy Aaron Hoag as the man who murdered a retired professor in a campus parking garage eight years ago.
72-year-old Jeong Im was found stabbed to death in the trunk of his car in the Maryland Avenue Garage on January 7th, 2005. Campus police knew someone went to the car on that date and set it on fire, but for years they couldn’t find the connection to Hoag.
Hoag jumped to his death from a downtown Columbia parking garage in August 2012. Then in December of last year, MU Police got a tip identifying Hoag as the suspect in the murder case…
Captain Brian Weimer says investigators then found the man who drove Hoag to the garage on the day Im was murdered. He says Hoag told him he needed to go get a car, and asked him to bring gasoline. The witness parked on a lower level and watched Hoag leave with the gas can. When he returned, Hoag was wearing a particle mask and hood over his head, and the witness said he saw smoke as they drove away.
Weimer says the driver is not a suspect in the murder, and adds the man didn’t come forward sooner because he feared his family would be harmed. MU Police are keeping the case open in case other witnesses want to come forward now, but they say Hoag is the only person involved in the murder. Investigators say they haven’t found a motive in the case yet.
Apparently Timothy Hoag had a violent history, even before the 2005 murder.
MU Police Captain Brian Weimer says the witness who unknowingly drove Hoag to the campus crime scene described the suspect as violent. Court records say Hoag pleaded guilty to assault, and tampering with a victim, in a 2001 case. His prison time was suspended, and he was sentenced to two years of supervised probation.
After MU Police identified Hoag as the lone suspect in the eight-year-old murder case, University of Missouri Chancellor Brady Deaton offered some perspective on Wednesday. He called the announcement “the most important news we will hear this year” and said the unsolved case “haunted” the Columbia campus.
Brady Deaton also offered his continuing sympathies for the family of Jeong Im. A statement from Im’s family says in part, “we are very relieved and grateful for the resolution of the case. This brings closure on the tragedy, to our family, as well as to the University of Missouri and Columbia communities as a whole.”