Archive for Friday, October 18, 2002

70s counterculture guru convicted of killing girlfriend

October 18, 2002

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— Ira Einhorn, the '70s hippie guru who fled to Europe and lived like a country squire after being charged with murder, was convicted Thursday of killing his girlfriend and stuffing her corpse in his closet a quarter-century ago.

The 62-year-old Einhorn showed no emotion upon hearing the first-degree murder verdict, which brought an automatic sentence of life without parole and smiles to the family of his victim, 30-year-old Holly Maddux.

Defense attorney William Cannon said Einhorn would appeal.

The verdict, reached after more than two hours of deliberations, capped a stunning fall for the counterculture figure who once held "be-in" events and counted rock star Peter Gabriel among his acquaintances. After fleeing the country, Einhorn lived in the south of France for years, appearing on television shows as he fought extradition and posing naked in his garden for Esquire magazine.

Einhorn insisted he was innocent and maintained he was framed by the CIA because of his knowledge of secret mind-control experiments. He said he last saw Maddux in 1977 as she left to make a phone call. Einhorn said he had no idea how Maddux's body turned up in a locked steamer trunk in his Philadelphia apartment.

Prosecutors, however, said Einhorn was a loutish womanizer who turned violent whenever a girlfriend wanted to leave him.

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