LOS ANGELES (KTLA) — The murder case against a man known for posing as a member of the Rockefeller family is now in the hands of a Los Angeles jury.
Christian Carl Gerhartsreiter, 52, could get up to 26 years in prison if he’s convicted of killing San Marino resident John Sohus back in 1985.
Gerhartsreiter is also suspected of being involved in the disappearance of Sohus’ wife, Linda. Her body has not been found.
Gerhartsreiter rented a guest house from the Sohuses in the early 1980s, using the name Chichester.
Shortly after John and Linda Sohus disappeared, Gerhartsreiter moved to Connecticut with the couple’s truck.
Police investigated the disappearance, but the case went cold.
It wasn’t until nine years later, in 1994, that workers digging a swimming pool for a new homeowner uncovered John Sohus’ bones.
Prosecutors allege that Gerhartsreiter crushed the victim’s skull, cut up his body with a borrowed chain saw and then buried him in the backyard.
The defense says that Gerhartsreiter is innocent, claiming the prosecution has not identified a clear motive for the killing.
Police say Gerhartsreiter used at least five different identities across the country fore more than two decades — including the name Clark Rockefeller — to avoid arrest.
He is serving a four- to five-year sentence in Massachusetts for a 2009 conviction for kidnapping his 7-year-old daughter in Boston during a supervised visit.