Man Cleared of Soliciting Rival’s Death
A Beverly Hills man was found not guilty today of trying to solicit former professional football star Ernie Holmes to murder wealthy Los Angeles businessman George Patarias Huck.
“It was the right verdict. The case was a bunch of baloney,” a smiling Donald Kreiss, 35, said outside the courtroom minutes after the jury’s verdict was read.
Kreiss was charged with having asked Holmes to kill Huck on three occasions in 1983. Huck, 46, was shot to death in front of his Mt. Olympus home in August, 1984.
Holmes, who is not a suspect in the murder, testified that he did not take Kreiss’ statements seriously until after he learned of Huck’s subsequent death.
Jurors interviewed after the verdict said they had problems believing the testimony of the massive one-time Pittsburgh Steeler defensive lineman, calling it incomplete or unreliable. Despite the verdict, Deputy Dist. Atty. Sterling E. Norris said Kreiss has still not been eliminated as a suspect in the actual murder of Huck.
Also still under investigation, Norris said, is Sana Huck, Kreiss’ former girlfriend, who was in the midst of a divorce from Huck at the time of his murder.