A Philadelphia jury yesterday found an Overbrook man guilty of murdering his girlfriend and abusing her corpse in 2005.
On the second day of deliberating, the Common Pleas jury convicted Glenn Hansen, 47, of the first-degree murder of Taneke Daniels, 27, a mother of three who was last seen on May 12, 2005.
Hansen, a thin, bespectacled man, showed no emotion as the jury of five women and seven men affirmed their guilty verdicts. Daniels' relatives let out sighs of relief.
"I'm just glad that it's over. I'm just glad he got his just due," Gail Daniels, the victim's mother, said after leaving the courtroom.
Hansen, a onetime handy man who relied on his mother for financial support, faces a mandatory life sentence without parole for the murder conviction when formally sentenced this morning by Judge Shelly Robins New.
The abuse-of-a-corpse conviction carries a 2 1/2- to five-year prison sentence.
Daniels' partially skeletonized remains were found April 24, 2006, buried in New Jersey's Pinelands National Reserve. She had been suffocated, and a plastic bag was tied around her head.
Assistant District Attorney Gail Fairman said Hansen killed Daniels to prevent her from testifying about being assaulted by him, and to stop her from trying to extort money from him to remain silent about the assault.
Daniels was due in court to testify May, 23, 2005 - 11 days after she vanished.
Hansen's attorney, Timothy Tarpey, argued that Daniels died of a drug overdose and that his client buried her in a state of panic.
The state's star witness, Hansen's sister, Kelly Hansen, however, contradicted the defense argument.
During a preliminary hearing in 2007 and again last week during the trial, she testified that her brother told her that he suffocated Daniels, raped her after she had died and buried her in Brendan T. Byrne State Forest in Burlington County to keep her from testifying against him.
"He killed her. He put a pillow over her head and smothered her until she stopped breathing," Fairman said, "then he put her out in the Pine Barrens."