Lawyer: Murder suspect made up story as part of horror film

January 03, 2018 - 3:03 pm

FREEHOLD, N.J. (AP) — A lawyer for a man accused of strangling a friend during a robbery and throwing her body off a New Jersey bridge claims his client made up stories about planning to rob and kill the victim as part of a horror film an acquaintance was making.

Liam McAtasney's attorney, Charles Moriarty, spoke Wednesday during a hearing where he unsuccessfully sought to have a judge dismiss a murder indictment against McAtasney.

Moriarty told state Superior Court Judge Richard English that the acquaintance told detectives that McAtasney was "always making things up to be more interesting."

Police say the acquaintance secretly record McAtasney confessing to the crime.

Monmouth County prosecutors say the 20-year-old Neptune City man killed 19-year-old Sarah Stern on Dec. 2, 2016, during a robbery that netted $10,000.

Stern's body has never been found.

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