Wolfgang convicted of murder in the death of Walter Adelman
Yamhill County Circuit Court Judge John Collins found Xavier Wolfgang guilty of one count each of murder, first-degree assault, second-degree abuse of a corpse and unauthorized use of a motor vehicle late Tuesday afternoon.
Wolfgang, 41, murdered 77-year-old Walter Adelman of Tigard by repeatedly clubbing him with a piece of wood on the property that Adelman owned on East Rock Creek Road in rural Sheridan in April 2012.
The bench trial lasted six days with Deputy District Attorney Ladd Wiles and Wolfgang's court-appointed attorney, Carol Fredrick of McMinnville, submitting closing arguments Tuesday afternoon. Wiles was assisted by Kate Peterson.
Collins took less than two hours to reach a verdict.
"There is no charge more serious than murder," Collins said. "I reached this verdict with great care and detail."
After the verdict was read, Wolfgang was led out of the courtroom in handcuffs and returned to jail. He will be sentenced at 1 p.m. Thursday.
The minimum prison sentence for murder is 25 years. The minimum for first-degree assault is 7 1/2 years.
Fredrick asked Collins to consider the lesser included charges of either first or second-degree manslaughter, in place of murder, and second or third-degree assault in lieu of first-degree assault.
Family members of Adelman sat in the front row of the courtroom to hear the verdict. They attended every day of the trial.
See Friday's print edition for additional details.