‘Rockefeller’ Pleads Not Guilty To Murder In California

By Linda Deutsch, AP Special Correspondent

ALHAMBRA, Calif. (AP) — A German immigrant who masqueraded as a member of the famous Rockefeller family has appeared in a Southern California court to face charges that he murdered his landlord more than a quarter-century ago.

A Los Angeles County Superior Court judge entered not-guilty pleas Friday for Christian Karl Gerhartsreiter, who spoke only to waive his right to speedy proceedings.

Prosecutors believe he murdered Jonathan Sohus, who disappeared along with his wife Linda in 1985.

Gerhartsreiter rented the couple’s guesthouse in the wealthy Los Angeles suburb of San Marino, and left town soon after they vanished.

The diminutive defendant was brought to California from Massachusetts, where he was serving a prison term involving the abduction of his daughter.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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