Man Convicted of Manslaughter in Killing Fox Exec Gavin Smith, Who Was Fatally Beaten and Found Buried in Desert

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

Los Angeles jury convicted a drug dealer Monday of voluntary manslaughter in the beating death of his wife’s lover — a 20th Century Fox executive whose body was found in the desert more than two years after he disappeared.

John Creech is seen in court on July 3, 2017, when he was convicted of voluntary manslaughter in the death of 20th Century Fox executive Gavin Smith. (Credit: Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times)

But the jury found him not guilty of more serious charges, including first and second-degree murder.

Prosecutors say John Creech beat Gavin Smith to death after catching him and Creech’s wife in a romantic tryst. Smith and Chandrika Cade began an on-and-off affair in 2008 when prosecutors say they met at a drug rehab facility.

Creech, 44, stashed Smith’s bloody car in a self-storage unit in Simi Valley and buried Smith’s body in a shallow grave outside Palmdale. Hikers stumbled upon his bones more than two years after he disappeared on May 1, 2012.

Read the full story on

Notice: you are using an outdated browser. Microsoft does not recommend using IE as your default browser. Some features on this website, like video and images, might not work properly. For the best experience, please upgrade your browser.