A man has been convicted in the kidnap and slaying almost a decade ago of a co-worker whose bones were found buried in his eastern Pennsylvania yard.
A Monroe County judge on Friday convicted Michael Horvath, 55, of criminal homicide, kidnapping, evidence-tampering and abuse of a corpse in the 2013 killing of Holly Grim. The judge acquitted him of a charge of obstruction in the nonjury trial.
Grim, 41, was last seen in Lehigh County’s Lower Macungie Township in November 2013. She and Horvath had worked together at a company that makes church organs, authorities said.
Police said bone fragments unearthed at Horvath’s Saylorsburg property were consistent with a gunshot wound to the chest, and say Horvath owned DVDs dealing with murder, sexually deviant behavior and “hunting humans.”
Get Philly local news, weather forecasts, sports and entertainment stories to your inbox. Sign up for NBC Philadelphia newsletters.
Defense attorney Janet Jackson argued that the case was circumstantial and suggested another suspect. Jackson conceded that the defendant could be described as a “weirdo” or “oddball,” but said he had never behaved inappropriately and wasn’t prone to anger, let alone violence.
“This is what we were hoping for,” Zachary Grim, Holly’s son, said outside the courtroom after the verdict was read, the (Allentown) Morning Call reported. “This was a long time coming.”
“We are just so happy that they found him guilty so he can rot in jail the rest of his life, and that’s what he deserves,” said Nancy Godowski, who was with Grim the night before she went missing.
Breaking news and the stories that matter to your neighborhood.
Sentencing is scheduled for Sept. 8. Prosecutor Michael Mancuso said he will seek consecutive sentences on for the murder and kidnapping convictions and also hopes to find out where the rest of the victim's remains are.