Woman found in dumpster makes first felony court appearance; Linnea Hayda’s claims are ‘fictitious,’ Vail police say
EAGLE — A woman charged with false reporting after she was found in a dumpster was back in court Wednesday, June 27.
Linnea Hayda, 31, made her first felony court appearance Wednesday morning before District Court Judge Paul Dunkelman. Hayda did not enter a plea Wednesday. She is scheduled to be back in court Wednesday, Aug. 8, before Dunkelman.
Hayda was arrested in March after she was found in a dumpster in Vail’s Sandstone neighborhood. Vail police say her story about how she came to be in that dumpster is “fictitious.”
Hayda is charged with attempting to influence a public servant, a Class 4 felony; tampering with physical evidence, a Class 6 felony; and false reporting to police, a Class 3 misdemeanor.
If she is convicted, then she faces up to six years in prison, said Heidi McCollum, assistant district attorney. Hayda is free on $7,500 bond.
What police say happened
Vail police detectives said they spent more than 200 hours investigating the case.
At approximately 5:37 a.m. Tuesday, March 27, three days before her Friday, March 30, custody hearing in District Court, Hayda was found in a dumpster with her wrists ziptied in front of her.
A court protection order made it illegal for her to be in the vicinity of the apartment at 1040 Vail View Drive, Vail police confirmed.
The next day, Hayda came to the Vail Daily building in Eagle-Vail. She had scrapes on her cheek and forehead and voluntarily told a reporter that she had finished her shift at her Avon job between 4 and 5 p.m. Monday, March 26. She claimed she was abducted at around 5:30 p.m. and that the person who took her, threw her into a car and told her she would not see her children again.
During that interview, Hayda said she did not remember anything until she was found in the dumpster the next morning.
When Vail police found Hayda at 5:37 a.m. Tuesday, March 27, she was alive, conscious and breathing but was unable to talk, police said.
Her story “proved to be fictitious,” police said.
“After a thorough investigation totaling over 200 hours, Vail detectives concluded that an account provided by Hayda, which led police to issue an alert to the community asking about suspicious activity, proved to be fictitious,” Vail police said following Hayda’s arrest.
Staff Writer Randy Wyrick can be reached at 970-748-2935 and firstname.lastname@example.org.