Einhorn found guilty of first-degree murder

Philadelphia Inquirer/October 17, 2002
By Jacqueline Soteropolous and Terry Bitman

Ira Einhorn was convicted this morning of first-degree murder in one of the city's most notorious crimes: the slaying 25 years ago of girlfriend Holly Maddux, whose mummified remains were found in a steamer trunk in Einhorn's Powelton Village apartment. Einhorn, 62, was given an automatic sentence of life in prison without parole on the first-degree murder charge. His lawyer said Einhorn would appeal.

The defendant stood stern-faced as the verdict was read. After hearing his fate, he blinked his eyes rapidly and brushed them with his hand.

He declined the judge's offer to address the court. The verdict drew smiles from the family of Maddux, who had attended the trial.

The jury of six women and six men deliberated for about an hour yesterday before retiring to their hotel. They resumed today at 9 a.m. and reached a verdict about 90 minutes later. The verdict was announced at 11:30 a.m.

"We didn't think his testimony was beneficial to him," jury forewoman Diane Green sid later. "The jury found inconsistencies in what we had heard. We felt he conflicted some of his own statements."

In 1993, a jury took about two hours to convict Einhorn in absentia of first-degree murder. The Pennsylvania legislature granted Einhorn an unprecedented second trial to secure his extradition from France.

Defense attorney William Cannon said Einhorn planned to appeal.

Judge William J. Mazzola had harsh words for Einhorn after the verdict was read, calling him "an intellectual dilettante who preyed on the uninitiated, uninformed, unsuspecting and inexperienced people."

Mazzola said that Einhorn was the type of person to "buy a book and read the first and last chapters and feign some special understanding."

Einhorn, who fled the country before his first trial, has always maintained his innocence. During lengthy testimony Monday and Tuesday, Einhorn denied abusing or killing Maddux.

District Attorney Lynne Abraham, talking to reporters shortly after noon, said, "This is a very sweet day for the Maddux family ... and for Holly's memory."

"This should also prove," Abraham said, "that justice delayed is not justice denied."

Assistant District Attorney Joel Rosen, who prosecuted the case, expressed pride in his office's work - 25 years after the crime - and said he also believed Einhorn's testimony hurt the defense.

He described Einhorn's testimony as "awful."

Maddux's sister Meg Wakeman, called the jury "a smart group" and said she and her family were satisfied with the verdict.

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