UPDATE: Police are saying that despite earlier reports, Grindr was NOT the service used by the killer to meet his victim. Via press release:
From the Phoenix Police Dept Press Office:
Hello all. Our detectives have learned through this continuing investigation that it was not the “Grinder” IPHONE application that was used by the victim to make contact with the suspect, it was in fact a different social network. Because this investigation is continuing, I do not have the information regarding the actual site that was used. I would ask that, as you continue to report this grizzly crime to your viewers readers and listeners, you use “unknown social network” in regards to how the victim and suspect were connected.
I will continue to update you on this investigation as information is received. Thanks as always,
Detective James R Holmes
Phoenix Police Department
Media Relations Unit
JMG: I have made changes to the post below, including removing the incorrect television report.
Phoenix police say 54 year-old Mark Woodland was brutally murdered on Sunday by 19 year-old Tommy Reed when the two hooked-up after meeting on Grindr an unknown social media site.
Phoenix Police Det. James Holmes said officers responded to a residence in the area of 40th Street and Greenway Road around midnight Sunday after a resident returned home to find his apartment ransacked. When officers went inside to check they found a downstairs bathroom door closed and the lights on inside, according to Holmes. They did not get an answer to a knock on the door. Holmes said when officers looked under the door they could see a body on the floor and when they forced the door open found the victim badly beaten. He also appeared to have been stabbed repeatedly, Holmes said. Phoenix firefighters were called to the home and the victim, 54-year-old Mark Woodland, was pronounced dead. Woodland’s roommate reported he had received a text message from the victim around 5 p.m. saying he was going to pick up a male date, whom he met on a social networking application, and bring him home. Woodland apparently asked his roommate to not be at home. The victim reportedly sent a second text at around 6 p.m. to ensure that his roommate had left the apartment. The roommate left and returned around 11 p.m. to find the home ransacked.
Using the victim’s phone, police were able to contact a friend in California who provided the user name of the suspect.