Family still waiting for Mid-South man accused of murdering wife to face judge

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Carl Hayes, Taquila Hayes

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SHELBY COUNTY, Tenn. — After months of waiting, it will be even longer before a man accused of killing his wife, a nurse and mother, faces a judge.

Carl Hayes was supposed to appear in court Tuesday morning, but that didn’t happen. A mugshot is the only look the public will get of the 43-year-old accused of murder, at least for the next few weeks.

It took only seconds for an attorney to speak on Hayes’ behalf Tuesday morning in a courtroom as he was set to see a judge for the first time.

“He was in custody; they said they were having problems getting the inmates up,” said Paul Hagerman with the Shelby County District Attorney’s Office. “Since he had an attorney there that just hadn’t been retained yet, that attorney excused his presence.”

The attorney present for Hayes said he will have an attorney retained by his next court date in March.

Hayes’ time in court is months in the making.

“It’s been an exceptionally long time coming for the family,” Hagerman said. “I’ve met with them a couple times, and this is just the start of the process.”

Hayes is accused of killing his wife, Taquila Hayes. The tumultuous case puzzled many in the Memphis area.

Taquila was officially reported missing by her family in August after they realized they actually hadn’t heard from her directly since the end of May.

The clues surrounding the mother and nurse’s disappearance were troubling. Deputies said Carl admitted to impersonating Taquila over text messaging, and a search of their Cordova home revealed fresh paint and new carpet.

Investigators also found large amounts of money missing from Taquila’s bank accounts.

Carl claimed Taquila left without her belongings, but friends and family said the mother would never leave her son.

Taquila’s mother was adamant since the beginning that Carl had something to do with the disappearance. She’s now asking for information as to where Taquila’s body could be.

When Hagerman was asked about handling the case without a body, he said he didn’t want to get into those details. 

“I’d rather not,” he said. “I mean, this is the very first court date, and we’ve gotta let the process play out.”

Carl Hayes is in jail on a $2 million bond. He’s set to be back in court March 17.

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