Accused in Cynthia Crampton killing told police he stayed in her home for 2 days after her death

Police officers testified that after his arrest, Tyler Hurd confessed in gruesome detail to killing a Saskatoon mother in her Stonebridge basement suite in June 2016.

35-year-old Tyler Hurd on trial for 1st-degree murder of Saskatoon mother

Cynthia Crampton is seen in this undated photo with her two daughters. (Submitted by Shanda Leftley)

In a police interview conducted after his arrest, Tyler Hurd admitted to killing Cynthia Crampton in her bathroom, then living inside her basement suite for two days.

Hurd, 35, is on trial this week, charged with first-degree murder in the death of the 55-year-old Saskatoon woman.

In a three-hour taped interview with Saskatoon police, Hurd went into graphic detail about how he hit Crampton in the head with a hammer, then fatally strangled her with a towel rack bar.

Hurd and his girlfriend, Tammy Poffley, were regular visitors to Crampton's basement suite, the trial has heard. Crampton would often let the couple stay with her while they were homeless.

According to Hurd's interview, Crampton was a drug dealer and made unwanted sexual advances toward him. This enraged Hurd, and eventually he made plans to kill her.

After hitting her several times with the hammer, he said Crampton was on the floor but still alive. He said he spent more than half an hour trying to kill her before finding the towel bar and strangling her to death. 

Speaking to police, Hurd said he regretted that Crampton's death was so prolonged. When asked what he would say to Crampton's daughters, he said he was remorseful that he killed their mother.

"I don't feel bad but for [her daughters'] sake, I feel horrible. I feel really bad. Cindy was still somebody's mother, somebody's daughter."

Hurd also talked about taking money and pills from Crampton's apartment, and hiding a duffel bag full of her jewelry and belongings outside the city, off a dirt road near Eighth Street.

He told police he locked the door to the bathroom, with Crampton's body inside, and continued to live in the suite.

Hurd said he told his girlfriend about the crime and that she responded favourably. Poffley pleaded guilty to an accessory to murder charge earlier this year and is currently serving a two-year sentence.

'Drug-filled, chaotic life'

Hurd said he was addicted to fentanyl and hydromorphone for years but was sober for weeks before the killing. 

He said he turned to hard drugs after the death of his wife from cancer. Before that, he worked as a welder. 

"I had everything … wife, kids, house, car, wicked job," he said in the videotaped confession.

Hurd said he "lost everything," including his job, in the recession. He had to give up his house and his car, and he eventually lost visitation rights with his kids.

"I was living a pretty drug-filled, chaotic life," he said. 

Hurd met Poffley, who he said worked as an escort, more than year before the killing. He said Crampton sold opioids.

"He felt that she was a bad person. He said he felt it was OK for people to kill bad people because society is better off," RCMP Const. Tyler Busch told the court.

After Hurd was transferred to a Saskatoon police car equipped with audio and video, he continued his confession, Busch testified.

Hurd told Saskatoon police officer, Sgt. Jason Worobec, "It's pretty cut and dry," saying the evidence against him was clear.

The CBC's Charles Hamilton will be in court today tweeting live. On mobile? Click here.

About the Author

Charles Hamilton

Charles Hamilton is a reporter with CBC Saskatoon.