About Us Contact Us Privacy Policy Terms of Use Editors Notes Cookie Policy
© Copyright 2024 Empire Media Group, Inc. Front Page Detectives is a registered trademark. All Rights Reserved. People may receive compensation for some links to products and services on this website. Offers may be subject to change without notice.

Couple Accused of Robbing and Killing Washington Man They Met on Dating Site

Authorities used phone records and GPS, to locate Curtis Engeland's remains at a dump site near Cosmopolis.
Cover Image Source: YouTube/KING 5 Seattle
Cover Image Source: YouTube/KING 5 Seattle

An elderly man from Washington was allegedly murdered by a couple for his financial assets, police said.

Curtis Engeland, 74, from Mercer Island, was found dead by authorities on March 7, after his family members reported him missing, People reported. The outlet has obtained a probable cause affidavit regarding the case. 

Representative Image Source: Pexels | Photo by DESPOINA APOSTOLIDOU

Engeland allegedly became a victim of a man he romantically pursued from a dating app, People reported.

Richard Sater, Engeland's close friend, said, the victim had been exploring romantic connections on dating sites. Engeland, linked up with a younger man named Philip Brewer, on a site called Scruff, said Sater, the outlet reported.

The affidavit states that Brewer and Engeland went for a hike and coffee on January 13, People reported. Engeland apparently invited Brewer back to his home that day for a movie. According to Engeland's statement in the affidavit, he fell asleep during the date, and after waking up, found himself without his wallet, phone, and car keys. Brewer was also allegedly missing from the scene.

Engeland informed the police when he noticed that thousands of dollars had been taken out of his bank account, People reported. Sater shared that his friend regularly checked with the investigators about the case's progress. 


Six weeks after the alleged robbery, Engeland's family members and Sater received a text from him, People reported. In the text, 'Engeland' informed them that he would be away for the next three to six weeks, and somebody named Christina would be renting out his basement.

The words in the text were improperly arranged, which was unlike Engeland, and raised doubts in the minds of his loved ones, the outlet reported.

The acquaintances tried to get in touch with Engeland but had no success, and lodged a missing complaint, People reported. Authorities used phone records and GPS, to find his remains at a dump site near Cosmopolis.

Investigators found Brewer and a woman named Christina Hardy, in Engeland's basement, as per the affidavit. The duo told investigators that they were renting the basement from Engeland, and had no idea about his whereabouts. 

Brewer and Hardy became suspects when the investigators received a tip, according to the affidavit, People reported. The investigators believe that the duo entered Engeland's residence in the middle of the night and following a "violent confrontation" injected the victim with a potent dose of fentanyl, the affidavit alleges.

The duo was allegedly caught on surveillance camera driving around in Engeland's truck, on February 24, KIRO7 reported. The video captures Brewer and Hardy moving to Cosmopolis at about 2:20 a.m. They stopped at a gas station where Brewer was seen pushing down the trunk where they had allegedly kept the victim's body.

The affidavit adds that after finding Engeland alive they allegedly stabbed him in the neck with a knife, People reported.


The body was then apparently dumped on the side of a logging road, KIRO7 reported. Then Brewer and Hardy made their way to Mercer Island and made several extravagant purchases.

Surveillance video captures the duo at the Auto Quest dealership in Renton on Sunset Blvd at about 2:30 p.m. February 24. They purchased a 2017 Chevy Impala for nearly $26,000 using Engeland's credit card.

At 4.30 p.m. the couple was seen on surveillance video at the Mercer Island McDonalds ordering their food, KIRO7 reported. At 5.12 p.m., the couple returned to Engeland's home. The couple was questioned but not arrested by police, and later, they went on a run from authorities.

On March 14, the pair was arrested from Southern California, People reported. They have pleaded guilty to charges of murder, kidnapping, and identity theft. They are being held in a King County Jail against a $5 million bond. 

Engeland's family and friends are devastated by the tragedy, People reported. "It's horrible," says his neighbor Laurie Goeken. "He was a youthful 74 with many years ahead of him still."

She remembers that the victim used to bake cookies and bring them to her family. He also used to share the tomatoes, peas, and rhubarb of his garden with them. Now, Goeken tends to that very same garden in Engeland's memory. “If it was just over money,” she said. "How is that worth a person’s life?”

POPULAR ON Front Page Detectives
MORE ON Front Page Detectives