On Monday October 21st, a guilty verdict was handed down to Levente Lazar for the murder of his mother, Athena Valentiny. Electronic evidence, including GPS coordinates, Internet searches, and a burner cell phone, assisted the prosecution in establishing its case against the defendant. Jury foreperson Geri Lundy called the amount of evidence displayed “overwhelming.”
During the trial, the District Attorney’s Office alleged that Lazar stabbed his mother to death in order to obtain an inheritance before marrying his girlfriend.
The evidence presented included coordinates showing that Lazar drove from his home in Bloomington, IL to Grover Beach, CA where his mother worked as a nurse. The coordinates were obtained from a burner cell phone used by Lazar. An examination of Lazar’s past online searches showed multiple references to murder and inheritance. On his return trip home, he searched for news articles about the death of his mother before her body had even been discovered. Surveillance footage showed Lazar driving up to his mother’s condo and later in the day leaving her condo followed by her dog, which has not been located.
Jury foreperson Geri Lundy stated the evidence collected made the case against Lazar clear. Lundy went on to say “technology convicted him.”
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Digital Forensics/Cybersecurity/Information Technology