Pastor Convicted Of Murdering Second Wife; Did Arthur Schrimer Kill His First Wife?

By Kahlil Thomas on January 23, 2013 10:54 AM EST

A Pennsylvania pastor was found guilty in the murder of his first wife ... all while waiting for the trial to begin on charges that he murdered his first wife.

Arthur Schirmer, 64, was convicted of first-degree murder in the killing of Betty Schrimer when he allegedly clubbed her over the head with a crowbar. The story then takes a turn as Schrimer put his wife's body into their PT Cruiser and put together a low speed car accident to conceal that the crime had even occurred.

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The "sinister minister," as prosecutors called him, was emotionless and said nothing as it took the jury all of 90 minutes to return with a guilty verdict. "Today, she can finally rest in peace," said Betty Schrimer's son Nate Novack. Schrimer has said that he is innocent and he attorneys will appeal the decision.

The defense took the route that what happen was an accident and Schrimer had no intention of killing his second wife. Schrimer at the time of the incident was having an affair with another woman but defense attorneys tried not to mention that has much as possible. Schrimer testified last week that he was taking his wife to the emergency room for her jaw pain when he swerved to avoid a deer and hit a guardrail.

Local authorities first treated the incident as a car accident but state police moved into action and concluded that the injuries Schrimer suffered could not have come from the low speed crash. Authorities also discovered Schrimer's blood in their garage but Pastor Schrimer contends that blood came from an earlier accident where his wife cut herself while cutting wood. Another point of interest for the state police was the suicide of a man in the pastor's office when he learned that Schrimer was having affair with the man's wife who was the church secretary.

This is only the beginning for Schrimer who still faces charges for the murder of his second wife Jewel Schrimer. Schrimer claims that his wife of 30 years fell down the basement stairs while vacuuming and he found her with the cord of the vacuum around her ankles. In the first case, there were "forceful, hard blows to the back of head, Jewel's head, which is similar to the second case with the second wife," said prosecutor Michael Mancuso.

According to the Assoicated Press, jurors were allowed to hear about the Jewel Schrimer case even as the defense fought to have that thrown out.

"I think the admission of the circumstances surrounding the death of Jewel Schrimer really did prejudice this case," said Schrimer attorney Brandon Reish who will be basing the appeal on the allowed second case.

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