NEWPORT BEACH, California. – The Latest on a suspect accused of the murder of a gay University of Pennsylvania student (all times are local):
An investigator has testified that a California man who is accused of the murder of a gay University of Pennsylvania student had troves of anti-gay, anti-Semitic and white hate group materials on his phone.
Orange County Sheriff’s Department Investigator Craig Goldsmith testified Tuesday in Orange County Superior Court, that Samuel Woodward had more than 100 different materials in connection with the violent hate group Atomwaffen. The group’s insignia was the background of his phone.
Woodward is to have a hearing to see whether he should be tried on one count of murder and hate crime allegations in the January stitch of Blaze Bernstein. Woodward has pleaded not guilty to the crimes.
Bernstein was gay and a Jew.
He went missing after a night out with Woodward in a park, in the Forest, about 50 miles (80 kilometers) southeast of Los Angeles. His body was found in a shallow grave in the park about a week later.
Goldsmith says Woodward of the phone was full of anti-gay and gay materials, as well as photos with Nazi-references.
Prosecutors say that the hatred, which inspired a California man to kill a gay University of Pennsylvania student shall be issued on the suspect’s mobile phone, laptop and social media.
Orange County prosecutors will begin presenting evidence against Samuel Woodward on Tuesday to convince a judge that he should face attempted murder and hate crime allegations.
Woodward has pleaded not guilty to fatally stabbing Blaze Bernstein in January after the two former high school peers met in the evening in a park.
Bernstein was missing for almost a week before his body was found in a shallow grave.
Court documents say Woodward told the police that he became angry after Bernstein kissed him.
A lawyer for Woodward says that he has a “serious mental disorder” and was struggling with his own sexual identity.