Embalmer convicted of killing wife back in court

Embalmer convicted of killing wife back in court
Robert G. Girts (Source: Cuyahoga County Sheriff)
Robert G. Girts (Source: Cuyahoga County Sheriff)

CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) - The Parma embalmer who pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter and insurance fraud by killing his wife with cyanide in 1992 will be back in court Tuesday.

Robert Girts plead guilty last year after being found guilty in two separate trials and having those convictions overturned.

In 2014, Girts was sentenced to six to 30 years in prison. At that time, he had already served more than 15 years.

Prosecutors expect that Girts will again plead guilty to involuntary manslaughter and could get out on time served.

The long road to the plea began on September 2, 1992, when the dead body of Diane Girts, 42, was found in the bathtub of the couple's Parma home.

One month later, Cuyahoga County Coroner Elizabeth Balraj ruled that her death had been caused by cyanide poisoning. Robert Girts was indicted and arrested on February 9, 1993.

After two trials, Girts finally admitted to planning his wife's death. He obtained cyanide and, before leaving on a trip to Chicago, put it in her salt shaker knowing she used it daily. During his two trials, Girts' defense had asserted that his wife committed suicide with cyanide.

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