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Entries in Leiby Kletzky (4)

Thursday
Aug042011

Levi Aron Competent to Stand Trial in Leiby Kletzky Murder

The casket of 8-year old Leiby Kletzky is carried during a funeral procession on July 13, 2011 in New York City. Ramin Talaie/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Levi Aron, the New York man charged with killing and dismembering 8-year-old Leiby Kletzky, has been found competent to stand trial even though he has complained to police of hearing voices.

"Now that Mr. Aron has been found fit to proceed, we will move forward expeditiously to bring his case to trial," said Brooklyn District Attorney Charles Hynes.

Court records say Aron, 35, told investigators he was hearing voices "telling him to take his own life for what he did."

Lawyers entered a plea of not guilty on Aron's behalf and said the competency ruling does not preclude them from pursuing an insanity defense.

"It means that at the time an act was allegedly committed you did not understand the nature and consequences of the action," said defense attorney Jennifer McCann.

Aron has been accused of killing Kletzky after the boy became lost while walking home from camp. Police have said he confessed to giving the boy drugs, suffocating him with a towel and cutting up his body. Kletzky's remains were found in a suitcase thrown into a dumpster and in Aron's freezer.

Court records say Aron told investigators the victim's feet were in the freezer because he forgot to put them into the suitcase.

Aron is charged with two counts of murder in the first degree, three counts of murder in the second degree, two counts of kidnapping in the first degree and one count of kidnapping in the second degree. If convicted, he faces a maximum of life in prison without parole.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Jul212011

Brooklyn Boy's Alleged Killer Charged with Murder, Kidnapping

Hemera Technologies/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- The man accused of killing and dismembering Leiby Kletzky, the 8-year-old Brooklyn boy whose dead body was found last week, was indicted in a New York courtroom Wednesday.

Brooklyn District Attorney Charles J. Hynes announced that a grand jury handed down an eight-count indictment charging Levi Aron, 35, with two counts of murder in the first degree.  The first-degree murder charges carry a maximum penalty of life in prison without parole.

Aron also faces three counts of second-degree murder, two counts of kidnapping in the first degree and one count of kidnapping in the second degree.

The next court date is set for July 28, when Aron is likely to be arraigned, Hynes said.

Earlier on Wednesday, the New York City medical examiner determined that Kletzky was given a lethal cocktail of drugs and then was smothered.  An autopsy revealed that the boy had traces of a muscle relaxant, cyclobenzaprine; an antipsychotic drug, quetiapine; Vicodin, and Tylenol in his blood.

The medical examiner said Kletzky died from suffocation after being smothered, and ruled the death a homicide.

Kletzky's dismembered body was found on July 13, two days after he was he was allegedly abducted by Aron while walking back home alone from camp the Borough Park neighborhood of Brooklyn.  Body parts were found in a refrigerator in Aron's home and inside a suitcase discarded in a dumpster.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Jul202011

Dismembered Brooklyn Boy Was Drugged, Smothered

Jupiterimages/Thinkstock(BROOKYLN, N.Y.) -- The Brooklyn boy who was murdered and dismembered last week after being abducted on the street was given a cocktail of drugs and then was smothered, the New York City medical examiner said Wednesday.

Leiby Kletzky, 8, had traces of a muscle relaxant, cyclobenzaprine; an antipsychotic drug, quetiapine; pain medication, and Tylenol in his blood, an autopsy showed. He died from suffocation after being smothered. The medical examiner ruled the death a homicide.

His accused killer, Levi Aron, told police he smothered Leiby with a towel before dismembering the boy's body. Leiby died on July 13, the medical examiner found.

An indictment is expected shortly in the death of Kletzky, who disappeared when he was walking home from camp in the Borough Park neighborhood of Brooklyn. It was the first time his mother allowed him to walk home alone. His mother planned to meet the boy halfway, but the boy missed a turn and got lost. He asked Aron for help and was not seen again after security cameras spotted the boy walking with Aron towards his car.

The boy's dismembered body was found two days later. Body parts were found in Aron's freezer in the nearby neighborhood of Kensington.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Friday
Jul152011

Brooklyn Boy's Alleged Killer Is Hearing Voices, Lawyer Claims

Digital Vision/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- The suspect in the murder and dismemberment of an 8-year-old Brooklyn boy is hearing voices, his lawyer said, and has been placed on suicide watch following his arraignment Thursday on a first-degree murder charge.

Levi Aron, 35, entered a not guilty plea at Brooklyn Criminal Court in the murder of Leiby Kletzky.

Aron's attorney, Pierre Bazile, asked for a psychiatric exam for his client, saying, "I have some serious concerns about the defendant's mental state."  He said that Aron said he was hearing voices.

Aron looked down and was stony-faced and silent during the proceeding.  The attorney asked for his client to be placed on suicide watch, saying, "I'm very concerned for his well-being."

Earlier, when police took Aron out of the precinct house, he ducked as an angry crowd screamed, "Murderer!"

Kletzky was abducted on his way home from camp on Monday.  The child struggled for his life before he was apparently suffocated to death, New York Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly said on Thursday.

Kelly said the medical examiner has not yet established a time of death or definitive cause of death, but that tentatively "it's a result of suffocation."  There is no indication so far of molestation, Kelly said.  There appears to be a ligature mark on the boy's body, suggesting he was tied up.

In his confession, Aron allegedly said he suffocated Kletzky with a towel and then cut up his body.  Kelly indicated that police believe the confession is largely true.

"He has been reasonably forthcoming.  The bulk of what he's said is believed to be correct," he said.

In the confession, Aron talks about finding the boy on the street and asking him if he wanted to come to a wedding and taking him for a ride, Kelly said.  He said the child was in the abductor's custody by 5:40 p.m. on Monday.

Kelly confirmed that Aron went to a wedding in Monsey, an Orthodox community in Rockland County north of New York City, on Monday night, although he could not "say definitively if the boy was with him."

Aron went to work on Tuesday for his usual shift ending at 4:45 p.m. at a hardware store in his Brooklyn neighborhood, Kelly said.  In the confession, Aron said the boy was still there when he returned home, and he made him a tuna sandwich, then panicked when he realized the extent of the search for the child and suffocated him with a towel before dismembering him.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio







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