Police: Delco man stoned to death for sex advances

Pictured: Joe John Thomas and Murray Seidman (Seidman photo courtesy Delaware County Times)

March 18, 2011 3:35:19 PM PDT
Police have made an arrest in the brutal beating death of a 70-year-old man inside an apartment building earlier this year in Delaware County.

John Joe Thomas, 28, who lives in the same building as the victim in Lansdowne, was arrested on Thursday and charged with first-degree murder in the death of Murray Seidman.

Police say Thomas confessed to the crime.

Back on January 12th, police were called to the Ath-Dara Apartments on Lansdowne Avenue for a report of a person banging on doors and screaming in the hallway.

When officers arrived, they say they found Thomas sitting in the hallway crying. He allegedly said "I'm not going down there again, there is too much blood."

Officers went into Seidman's apartment where they found dried blood spatter on the floor, walls and furniture.

Seidman's body was found face-down on the living room floor.

When he was interviewed, Thomas allegedly told police that he read in the Old Testament that homosexuals should be stoned in 'certain situations.'

According to court documents, Thomas said Seidman made sexual advances toward him over a 'period of time.' Thomas told police that he prayed for an answer and the answer he received was to put an end to Seidman's life.

So, Thomas told police, he took a rock from outside the apartment, put it in a sock and beat Seidman approximately 10 times in the head.

After the final blow, Thomas told police made sure Seidman was dead he threw his bloody clothes in a dumpster and left. He claims he returned a few days later to make it appear he had just discovered the body.

Thomas also told police he had spent nearly every day with Seidman, and he had the power of attorney over Seidman's affairs.

Police say they also learned that Thomas met with a lawyer and prepared a will for Seidman, to which Thomas is the sole beneficiary.

However, if Thomas was after the money, he never got it. According to county records, Seidman's will has not been probated.