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Man charged with killing wife in 1995 arraigned

August 25, 2014

WESTFIELD, Mass. (AP) — An Ohio man who authorities say killed his wife and teenage daughter nearly two decades ago, then started a new life and a new family, was ordered held without bail Monday at his arraignment in Massachusetts in one of the killings.

A not guilty plea to a murder charge was entered on behalf of Robert Honsch, 70, in Westfield District Court. His court-appointed lawyers did not argue for bail.

Honsch was arraigned in connection with the death of Marcia Honsch, 53, whose body was found in October 1995 near an entrance to Tolland State Forest in rural western Massachusetts.

Around the same time, Elizabeth Honsch, 17, was found dead behind a New Britain, Connecticut, strip mall. Robert Honsch faces a separate arraignment in Connecticut.

Both had been shot in the head. The family lived in Brewster, New York, at the time.

Robert Honsch never reported either missing, Hampden District Attorney James Orenstein said.

Neither body had identifying information, but an examination of clothing and other items found at the scenes suggested they were from New York. Several rounds of DNA testing determined they were mother and daughter, but they remained unidentified until a woman from Virginia Beach, Virginia, contacted New York state police in June looking for relatives unaccounted for since 1995.

Robert Honsch was found living under an assumed name with his current wife and three children and was interviewed at his Dalton, Ohio, home before being taken into custody last month. Authorities said an examination of items found near Elizabeth Honsch’s body connected him to the scene.

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