73-year-old describes attack that left his brother-in-law dead


A 31-year-old is in the Lancaster County Prison after police said he stabbed and beat a 68-year-old to death.

Jonathan Herr is charged with the death of Michael Varley.

Police said Herr used a brick, sauce pan, and a wooden stool to kill Varley.

“His eyes were just evil,” Benuel King, Varley’s brother-in-law, said about Herr.

Police said the attack happened at Varley’s home on Hedgewood Avenue, which is near the Ronks Fire Department, on Monday night.

King, who is 73-years-old, said he saw the attack happening and tried to intervene before calling 9-1-1.

“I went and got the broom and I started beating on his head half a dozen times,” King told ABC 27 News. “It didn’t phase him!”

Court documents show that after the attack Herr walked back to his apartment, which is also on Hedgewood Avenue, and used blood from the attack to write on his own apartment door.

“The cops saw a cross on the door with blood,” King said. 

Police said Herr moved to Hedgewood Avenue just three weeks ago.

Investigators aren’t sure what lead to the fatal beating.

“What good reason would you have,” Lancaster County District Attorney, Craig Stedman, questioned. “There is no good reason! The level of violence it’s drastic.”

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