Rockefeller impostor charged with murder in LA
BOSTON -- The man who called himself Clark Rockefeller is facing new charges.
California officials charged him with murder in the disappearance of a man 25 years ago.
Months after he was convicted by a Boston jury on kidnapping charges, Christian Gerhartsreiter could soon face another - this time on murder charges for killing 26 years ago in San Marino, California.
“He wants to fight this and maintain his innocence,” said Bradford Bailey, defense attorney.
Attorneys for the man known as Clark Rockefeller say he’s been a person of interest in the California case ever since John and Linda Sohus disappeared in 1985. Rockefeller was then using the alias of Christopher Chichester and living in a guest house owned by John Sohus’ mother. He left town, and years later the remains of John Sohus were found buried in the backyard. Linda remains missing.
“It’s a huge obstacle to be bringing forward charges 26 years after an alleged incident occurred,” said Bailey.
California prosecutors have only charged Gerhartsreiter with John’s death, but not Linda’s. They will not say what new evidence prompted their action now, but once he’s arraigned in Los Angeles County they want to hold him on $10 million bail.
Gerhartsreiter is currently serving a five year prison term at Gardner State Prison for kidnapping his daughter.
“I’m sure he’s extremely disappointed and may well want to get out there early and proclaim his innocence,” said Bailey.
Bailey and Denner say they spent two hours with their client on Wednesday morning to go over these new allegations. They say prosecutors have hinted at new forensic evidence, but so far they say they’ve seen no proof of that.
“There’s nothing that we have heard about his recollections of his relationship with this couple that gives either Brad or myself any pause whatsoever,” said Denner.
Rendition to California could take anywhere from two weeks to two month pending on whether or not his attorneys decide to fight it.
After his arraignment, Gerhartsreiter will be held in California until his trial. If he is found not guilty he will then be returned to Massachusetts with rest of his sentence for credit with time served in California.
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