GREENSBURG, Pa. (AP) — The former live-in caretaker of a Pittsburgh-area mansion has died, ending criminal charges that he drank more than $102,000 worth of old whiskey that he was supposed to be guarding.
A district judge last year ordered 63-year-old John Saunders, of Irwin, to stand trial after hearing testimony from the owner of the South Broadway Manor Bed and Breakfast.
But the Tribune-Review reports Saunders died July 21, ending the case.
The mansion's owner, Patricia Hill, told police she had found nine 12-bottle cases of whiskey hidden in the century-old mansion built by industrialist J.P. Brennan after she bought it in 2011.
According to court records, Hill hired Saunders that March to care for the property, which would have included safeguarding the whiskey. But when Hill went to have the pre-Prohibition Old Farm Pure Rye Whiskey appraised in March 2012 she discovered 52 empty bottles, on which police said they later found DNA from Saunders' saliva.
The whiskey was produced in 1912 and bottled in 1917 by the West Overton Distilling Co. and was appraised at more than $2,000 a bottle.
August 13, 2014
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