Justice after 45 years: How the NYPD and Queens prosecutors solved the decades-old murder of a World War I veteran

After almost 45 years, the NYPD has served a sizzling plate of justice in a chilly murder case in Queens.

Seventy-four-year-old Martin Motta was arrested on Nov. 3 for the 1976 murder of George Seitz, who was 81 at the time of his loss of life. Utilizing genealogical know-how (comparable to DNA exams) and a telephone tip, detectives have been in a position to examine and piece collectively the proof that led to Motta and the grim discovery of Seitz’s stays.

Seitz’s dismembered stays have been unearthed in 2019 in the rear of an residence on a hundred and fifteenth Road in Richmond Hill, the place the alleged killer resided, authorities stated. They’d been buried below concrete for almost a half-century.

“This just goes to show the effort and determination of the Police Department and the DA’s office will not stop, we are relentless in bringing people to justice when they commit crimes and homicides,” Chief of Detectives James Essig stated at a press convention in One Police Plaza on Nov. 4.

Police confirmed a picture of Seitz, a World War I veteran, in his youth, sporting a army uniform; in addition to a composite sketch of how he appeared on the day of his loss of life.

a picture of George Seitz was displayed has NYPD officers spoke about the arrest. Picture by Dean Moses

Seitz was reported lacking when he left his residence at 159-12 88th Ave. in Jamaica on Dec. 10, 1976 as a way to get a haircut — however he by no means arrived at the barber store.

In keeping with Daniel Saunders of the Queens District Legal professional’s workplace, Seitz was recognized to hold massive sums of cash, main detectives to consider that theft was the killer’s motive.

“We think that the motive in this case was robbery and that he was killed, dismembered and the remains buried shortly thereafter,” Saunders stated, including the hairdresser was additionally owned by the suspect. 

Officers additionally obtained a tip pointing to the suspect, however it’s believed that fears of repercussions had prevented the tipster from coming ahead for almost 5 a long time.

Daniel Saunders of the Queens District Legal professional’s workplace. Picture by Dean Moses

“I think that you would have to attribute it to a matter of intimidation and concerns about repercussions,” Saunders stated.

Whereas the actual trigger of loss of life has but to be decided as a result of the state of the stays, together with a mangled torso, health workers have declared it a murder.

Motta, the now aged suspect, has been indicted with one rely of intentional murder in the second diploma, but as a result of the passage of time and the statute limitations no different cost could possibly be introduced in opposition to him. Motta was slated to be delivered to Rikers Island, the place he’ll stay pending trial.

Saunders lauded the NYPD’s investigative efforts.

“I agree with the NYPD’s wholeheartedly remarkable investigation and it pays tribute to their persistence, their diligence, and their thoroughness in conducting an investigation,” Saunders added.

Queens District Legal professional Melinda Katz, who introduced Motta’s indictment Wednesday, stated the case served “as an example of how police and prosecutors work together to bring individuals to justice, regardless of how much time passes or how many obstacles are placed in our path.”

“After 45 years, the alleged killer of a World War I veteran is being held accountable and brought to justice,” Katz stated in a assertion. “We hope the identification of the remains and the indictment in this case will begin to bring peace and closure to his loved ones.”

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