Brothers charged in separate beating deaths 23 years apart



While Christopher Thrasher sits in the Donaldson Correctional Facility in Jefferson County, his brother, Matthew Thrasher, could be headed down that same path.

In 1993, 17-year-old Christopher was sentenced to life without parole in connection with his involvement in the 1992 beating of two Oneonta boys – Allen Eakes, 15, and Kevin Duncan, 14.

Last month, Matthew, 33, waived extradition to Blount County from Wisconsin after being charged in the beating death of 53-year-old David Hayes, of Holly Pond.

Both instruments used in the separate killings was a baseball bat or a “bat-like” object.

Two others were arrested in the 1992 deaths – Nathan Gast and Carvin Stargell. Eakes and Duncan were beaten and left to drown in Shades Creek under a bridge in Bessemer.

Gast, who was released from prison last year, told his parents, who then reported to police.

Matthew was arrested in Kenosha, Wisc., on Jan. 13, along with Stephanie Diane Underwood, 30, of Cullman, in relation to a shoplifting incident. The vehicle the duo was driving was registered to Hayes. Upon further investigation, “brown-reddish stains” were found in the vehicle.

During questioning of Thrasher and Underwood, it was revealed Hayes had been either injured or killed at the home of Christopher Jones, 32, of Hayden. In his house, blood was found in the living room and in the hallway leading to the door, according to sources. Additionally, the possible weapon used to hit Hayes was found outside the home.

It has been confirmed that Hayes died on Christmas Day. He was reported missing on Jan. 4 by a relative after he had not been seen since Christmas Eve. His body was recovered late last month in a wooded area off Buck Ridge Road on Pine Mountain.

Initial information suggests Hayes was struck with a “stick-like” object or a bat and suffered blunt-force injuries to the head.

Matthew Thrasher, Underwood, and Jones are expected to appear before the grand jury in the coming months.