‘Kai The Hatchet-Wielding Hitchhiker’ is facing life in prison after being found guilty of murder.
If you’re not familiar with Caleb McGillvary, aka Kai, you might not find it that surprising that a guy with the nickname ‘the hatchet-wielding hitchhiker’ has been found guilty of such a horrific crime.
But the homeless man actually got his nickname after going viral in 2013, when he used the aforementioned hatchet to save a woman from an attacker and gave a very animated interview afterwards.
Check it out:
However, later that same year, in May 2013, McGillvary was arrested for the murder of 73-year-old lawyer, Joseph Galfy Jr.
McGillvary had reportedly met Galfy in Times Square, New York, before returning with the lawyer to his home in New Jersey. Two days later, the attorney was found beaten to death in his bedroom, wearing only underwear and socks.
According to ABC News, the hitchhiker claimed he was the victim of sexual assault that ended in a confrontation. McGillvary discussed the alleged incident on Facebook, where he said Galfy had committed a sexual act on him without consent.
The internet star had to wait six years for the case to go to court, and opening arguments began earlier this month. Both sides reportedly agreed to many of the details in the case, but the defence argued it was all in self-defence.
The state called on four witnesses, law enforcement officers, during the first seven hours of the trial. They detailed how they secured the scene, collected evidence and stored it, according to NJ.com. The defense focused instead on the evidence that wasn’t collected, including some pills found in the fridge and a carpet with blood stains.
CBS report the 30-year-old was found guilty of first-degree murder this week. The county medical examiner claimed the victim has sustained numerous serious blunt-force injuries, and prosecutors said the extent of injuries contradicted McGillvary’s self-defence claim.
They added that the hitchhiker had cut his long hair and fled the state after the murder.
Closing arguments at Kai the Hitchhiker’s murder trial are starting now. He’s accused of killing a 73-year-old Clark man in 2013 and gave an emotional, outburst-filled testimony on the last day of the trial. https://t.co/1a4fRq44PQ pic.twitter.com/xXv04lh9bQ
— Sophie Nieto-Munoz (@snietomunoz) April 23, 2019
Union County Prosecutor Michael A. Monahan said:
This was a brutal, vicious, senseless crime, and we are pleased that the interests of justice have been served.
We sincerely thank the jury for their service and hope that today’s verdict brings some measure of solace to Mr. Galfy’s family, friends, and loved ones.
McGillivary faces up to life in prison. He will be sentenced on June 13.
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Emily Brown first began delivering important news stories aged just 13, when she launched her career with a paper round. She graduated with a BA Hons in English Language in the Media from Lancaster University, and went on to become a freelance writer and blogger. Emily contributed to The Sunday Times Travel Magazine and Student Problems before becoming a journalist at UNILAD, where she works on breaking news as well as longer form features.