- The Washington Times - Friday, October 18, 2002

PHILADELPHIA (AP) Self-styled hippie guru Ira Einhorn, who hid out in Europe for nearly 17 years after being charged with killing his girlfriend, was found guilty yesterday of murdering her and stuffing her mummified corpse in his closet.

Einhorn, 62, was given an automatic sentence of life in prison without parole on the first-degree-murder charge.

He showed no emotion upon hearing the verdict, which drew smiles from the family of his victim, 30-year-old Holly Maddux.

Einhorn was a 1970s counterculture superstar who held "be-in" events and counted yippie Jerry Rubin and rock star Peter Gabriel among his acquaintances.

He insisted he was innocent and said he last saw Miss Maddux in 1977 as she left to make a phone call.

He said he had no idea how her body turned up in a steamer trunk in his apartment closet.

Defense attorney William Cannon said Einhorn planned to appeal.

The guilty verdict capped a stunning fall for a gadfly who lived the life of a country gentleman during his time in France. He appeared on television shows after his arrest five years ago to discuss his plight and posed naked in his garden for Esquire magazine.

Prosecutors said Einhorn was a loutish womanizer who turned violent whenever a woman wanted to leave him. They had him read to jurors from his poems and diary entries, in which he wrote "to kill what you love when you can't have it seems so natural" and "violence always marks the end of a relationship."

The six-man, six-woman jury deliberated for 2½ hours before reaching its verdict. The jurors had been sequestered since late September to avoid influence from media coverage.

Einhorn was captured in France in 1997, 20 years after Miss Maddux vanished. He was returned to the United States last year after assurances were made to the French government that his 1993 conviction in absentia would be vacated and he would not face the death penalty.

Miss Maddux's sister, Meg Wakeman, told jurors that Miss Maddux was "the leading light and life of our lives" and called her killing "a simple act of utter selfishness."

During the trial, friends and acquaintances of Miss Maddux described seeing her bruised and intimidated during her tumultuous five-year relationship with Einhorn. In the weeks before she disappeared, they said, she had grown happier and more confident because of her independence from him.

Former friend Michael Hoffman testified that Einhorn once discussed attacking a former girlfriend in 1966.

"He thought that at the base of all human interaction was violence, at the base of our internal being was violence," Mr. Hoffman testified, adding that Einhorn drew his ideas from the writings of the Marquis de Sade among others.

Prosecutors also called to the stand the former owner of a bookstore who said Einhorn once asked for a "how-to" book on mummification one that specified the "herbs or any liquid used in the process."

Defense attorney William Cannon said Einhorn encouraged an "open relationship" in which he and Miss Maddux had other sexual partners, claiming the hippie guru espoused the concept of "free love" counter to the prosecution argument that rage toward his lover's new relationship led to murder.

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