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L.A. Now Live: Rockefeller impostor convicted of murder

April 11, 2013

After more than three weeks of trial proceedings, it took a day for the downtown Los Angeles jury to convict Christian Karl Gerhartsreiter of first-degree murder Wednesday, capping a nearly three-decade-old whodunit and ending the strange odyssey of a man who went from teenage German immigrant to member of the New England social elite to now-convicted killer.

Join us at 9 a.m. as we discuss with Times reporter Jack Leonard the trial of Gerhartsreiter, who for years posed as a member of the Rockefeller family.

Gerhartsreiter, 52, was accused of bludgeoning John Sohus, his landlady's 27-year-old son, with a blunt object. The body was buried behind a guest house where Gerhartsreiter had been living on the Lorain Road property, where the couple lived with John's mother in the main house.

FULL COVERAGE: Rockefeller imposter on trial

More than 40 witnesses testified, with many recounting stories about Gerhartsreiter's audacious frauds.

In San Marino, he introduced himself as British aristocrat Christopher Chichester. In Connecticut, he pretended to be television and film producer Christopher Crowe before persuading some on Wall Street that he was a bond trader.

But it was his act as Clark Rockefeller, an eccentric but brilliant member of America's famous wealthy family, that won him entry to exclusive social clubs and fooled many, including his Harvard-educated wife.

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