THEO LENGYEL, formerly a key contributor to the avant-garde jazz-metal ensemble Mr. Bungle, currently faces allegations as a murder suspect in the tragic death of his girlfriend, Alice “Alyx” Kamakaokalani Herrmann, just last month. Authorities in Capitola, California, apprehended the 54-year-old musician on Tuesday, charging him with first-degree murder. The arrest took place, and he is currently being held without bail at Santa Cruz County Jail, as reported by KRON.
According to the San Francisco Chronicle, Lengyel had been labeled a “person of interest” since the disappearance of 61-year-old Herrmann on December 3. Human remains, believed to be Herrmann’s, were discovered in Tilden Regional Park, with her car last seen parked at Lengyel’s residence. The El Cerrito Police Department noted Lengyel’s lack of cooperation during the investigation. Following Herrmann’s failure to board a flight to Hawaii, her family reported her missing. During this time, Lengyel reportedly traveled to Portland, Oregon.
The Contra Costa County Coroner’s Office is currently in the process of confirming the identity of the discovered remains as those of Herrmann through DNA analysis.
Capitola police released a statement acknowledging the collaborative efforts of their investigators and law enforcement partners, leading to the arrest of Theobald Lengel in connection with the tragic homicide of Alice Kamakaokalanil. In their message, they expressed heartfelt condolences to the victim’s family and friends during this challenging period.
As of now, the motive behind the alleged homicide remains unknown.
KRCR reported that Lengyel had previously been involved in a domestic violence case initiated by his then-wife. In 2017, she secured a restraining order against him, leading to the couple filing for divorce later that same year.
Lengyel contributed to Mr. Bungle as a saxophonist and clarinet player from 1985 to 1996, featuring prominently on the band’s first two major label albums, 1991’s “Mr. Bungle” and 1995’s “Disco Volante.” Trevor Dunn, a member of the band, explained in a fan Q&A on his website in 2005 that the decision to part ways with Lengyel was unanimous among the members. Dunn noted that they felt Lengyel wasn’t evolving with the rest of the band, and tensions arose when there were fewer opportunities for him to contribute. The split led to Lengyel’s departure from the group, and communication has been severed since then.
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