Family Uses Billboard to Keep Son's Murder From Becoming a Cold Case - NBC 10 Philadelphia

Family Uses Billboard to Keep Son's Murder From Becoming a Cold Case



    With more than a year gone by since Michael Hagan, Jr.'s murder, a new, bold effort is being made to find his killer. (Published Friday, Sept. 20, 2013)

    It’s been more than a year since Drexel graduate and IT consultant Michael Hagan Jr. was shot and killed during a botched robbery in Society Hill. The victim’s mother, Carol Hagan, says she, her husband Michael Hagan, Sr. and family are still doing all that they can to find out who murdered her son, and why.

    “We’re gonna do everything we possibly can. We go out and put posters up in neighborhoods and anywhere else we can put them because we don’t want it to become a cold case,” Carol Hagan said. “They need to get them off the streets, whoever did this.”

    Hagan says homicide detectives have kept in touch with her but have yet to find any major clues that would explain exactly what happened on the night of July 1, 2012.

    Police found Michael Hagan, 32, suffering from a gunshot wound to the chest on in the 400 block of South 4th Street at approximately 3:30 a.m. on July 1, 2012. Hagan was taken to Jefferson Hospital where he later died. Police believe he was the victim of a botched robbery as both his keys and his wallet were missing when he was found.

    With no major leads coming from Philadelphia Police, and to keep the public's attention on the unsolved case, the Hagans dedicated the past year to creating a full-on campaign to find tips or information about their son's murder.

    Most recently the family designed a billboard poster that can now be seen on I-676 near the Ben Franklin Bridge.

    “We’re just hoping that enough people would see it, and to keep the case open and alive. We’ve had this billboard since about February of this year. It’s been over by the stadium, and it’s been on 95 in the northeast. Clear Channel just moves it to whatever space is available,” Carol Hagan said.

    According to Carol Hagan, Clear Channel donated the billboard space to the family. A space of that size, in a prime location, could have cost the family anywhere from $5,000 to $100,000 in advertising fees.

    “Clear channel donated their space, so we just had to pay for the production. They were very, very generous and helpful to us and we are very grateful for that,” she said.

    For a month the family paid to have smaller versions of the billboard poster placed on public transit buses and trains in the city; a costly venture, but not costly enough to keep them from paying upwards of $5,000 in fees, according to Carol Hagan.

    “We’re gonna do whatever we have to do. It was very costly, so we could only keep them up for a month. But we just did it. We’re just trying everything we can,” she said.

    The Hagans have also launched, a memorial web site, and the Michael G. Hagan Memorial Fund, to establish a scholarship in Michael Hagan’s name, and to increase the reward amount being offered for the arrest of his killer.

    The current reward being offered for the arrest of Michael Hagan’s killer is $50,000. The City of Philadelphia has posted $20,000 for information that leads to the arrest and conviction of the person(s) responsible for Michael Hagan’s murder. An additional $5,000 is being provided by the New Jersey State Police NCO Union and $25,000 has been donated by members of the public, family, and friends. All of the money is being held by the Citizens Crime Commission.

    “We appreciate any and all donations to the fund. Every little bit helps,” she said. “It just takes one person that’s going to see it and hopefully know something, and call it in.”

    Information and tips regarding Michael Hagan's murder can still be called in to the Crime Commission Tip Line at (215) 546-TIPS or to the Philadelphia Police Department Tip Line at 215-686-TIPS.