BETHESDA, Md. (TCD) — A 38-year-old man recently pleaded guilty to breaking into his former boss’s home and fatally shooting him in 2021.
According to the affidavit, on June 24, 2021, Geoffrey Biddle, the CEO of Payment Solutions Inc., was reported missing after he hadn’t shown up for work, “which was extremely unlike him.”
Biddle’s close friend and former business partner, Stephen Willard, reportedly went to Biddle’s home on Windsor Lane to check on him and saw that his car was parked in the driveway with a flat tire, which he thought was “suspicious.”
Willard went into the unlocked home and searched through Biddle’s wallet, which was missing credit cards and cash even though “Biddle usually kept around $100 cash in his wallet,” the affidavit said.
Willard reportedly left the home without checking the basement because “he thought the door was locked,” and he had someone call police to investigate further.
According to the affidavit, Montgomery County Police searched the basement of Biddle’s home and discovered his body on the ground with a “large amount of blood.” Police reportedly located .22 caliber shell casings as well.
The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner ruled Biddle’s death a homicide, the affidavit said.
Investigators reportedly searched Biddle’s cellphone and noticed a “one-minute call to SunTrust bank,” as well as an outgoing email to his employees, “which stated that Biddle was having a family emergency and would be out of touch.”
Employees reportedly found the email “suspicious” because Biddle wasn’t supposed to be working on the day the email was sent, June 23, 2021.
The affidavit said a Payment Solutions employee who had access to Biddle’s accounts looked into Biddle’s bank and “noticed a check from Biddle’s personal SunTrust account made out to Billy Phillips” on June 20, 2021. The employee reportedly found this “odd” because Phillips had been fired from Biddle’s company in May or June 2020 “due to lack of performance.”
The signature on the check was reportedly forged.
Another similar check made out to Billy Phillips was made out on June 17, 2021, in the amount of $9,500, according to the affidavit.
Using surveillance footage and other evidence, investigators reportedly determined Phillips went to Biddle’s home on June 23, 2021, to steal the checks, and at some point, Phillips ran into Biddle and fatally shot him.
According to the affidavit, Phillips then predated the stolen checks for June 20, 2021, and June 18, 2021, before cashing them in on the day of the murder, as well as June 25, 2021.
Phillips recently pleaded guilty to first-degree murder, home invasion, armed robbery, and use of a firearm in the commission of a felony, WTTG-TV reports.
He is scheduled to be sentenced in March and faces a possible sentence of life in prison with an additional 65 years.