When the verdicts that Stan Patz waited 38 years for were finally delivered Tuesday, the Manhattan dad could barely speak. An emotional Patz gripped the hands of two friends, squeezing them as a Manhattan jury convicted Pedro Hernandez in the kidnapping and murder of his 6-year-old son, Etan, reports the New York Daily News. He exhaled deeply and silently mouthed a single word of approval: “Yeah.”
The guilty verdicts against Hernandez, 55, a former bodega worker, were returned Tuesday after nine days of deliberations by the diligent jury. The boy disappeared on May 25, 1979, as he walked alone to his school bus stop for the first time. It was one of the city’s most notorious unsolved killings — and a case that resonated nationwide. Hernandez’s first trial ended 21 months ago with a hung jury after a single holdout refused to convict the defendant.