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How the most notorious murder in the city was finally solved by hard work and luck

PMG PHOTO JAIME VALDEZ
PMG PHOTO JAIME VALDEZ
PMG PHOTO JAIME VALDEZ
PMG PHOTO JAIME VALDEZ - Souvenirs from more than 10 years of reporting on the murder of Tim Moreau by Jim Redden.

The Starry Night Murder: A long, strange trip to justice

Introduction

For much of the 1980's, Starry Night was the largest, most successful rock club in Portland, Oregon. Owned and operated by a promoter named Larry Hurwitz, Starry Night attracted some of the decade's biggest performers, including Tina Turner, Boy George, The Ramones, Metallica, The Beastie Boys, Devo, The Pixies, Berlin and many, many more.

But by late 1989, the Portland Fire Bureau began investigating Starry Night for chronic overcrowding. Although the official capacity of the club was approximately 1,100 people, the Fire Inspector thought that more than 1,500 people were actually being squeezed into the biggest shows.

Proving this was difficult, however. Tickets for the most popular shows were sold through the TicketMaster company, and they were only authorized to print 1,100 tickets.

The answer was revealed at a John Lee Hooker concert on January 20, 1990. The show had been booked by Monqui Presents, an independent promotions company with offices in Portland and Seattle. Co-owner Mike Quinn discovered more than 200 counterfeit tickets at the door.

They had been sold by Hurwitz for $14.50 each — meaning Hurwitz had made $2,900 on the show which he did not share with the promoter.

But Hurwitz blamed Tim Moreau, the club's publicity director, for the counterfeits. Hurwitz said he gave Moreau money to buy real tickets for resale. According to Hurwitz, Moreau kept the money and brought him back a stack of counterfeits — counterfeits which he mistakenly sold as real tickets.

Tim Moreau disappeared a few days later. After he vanished, Hurwitz said he confronted Moreau about the counterfeit tickets during a meeting at Starry Night on January 23rd.

Six days later, Tim's landlord called his parents, Mike and Penny Moreau, who lived in New Orleans, to say she had not seen him for days. They filed a missing persons report with the Portland Police Bureau.

But, in fact, Tim had not run away. Hurwitz murdered him at his club, and then buried his body in the rugged mountains of the Columbia River Gorge.

It would take nearly 10 years for the crime to be solved. Before it was over, Hurwitz would be accused of a range of other serious crimes, including drug dealing, money laundering, arson, and racketeering. The investigation would stretch from Portland to Thailand and Vietnam. It would involve the Portland Police Bureau, the Multnomah County District Attorney, the Internal Revenue Service, the U.S. State Department and an alternative journalist named Jim Redden.

This is the story of how the Starry Night Murder was finally solved.

The history of Starry Night

Larry Hurwitz was born into an upper middle class New York family in 1954. He came of age in the late 1960s, a time of social turmoil. Hurwitz opposed the Vietnam War and became a conscientious objector, then left home to marry his girlfriend, Meryl Schultz, and travel the country.

Hurwitz worked at several rock clubs around the country in the late 1960s, including the Fillmore West, run by well-known promoter Bill Graham.

In the early 1970s, Hurwitz and his wife moved to a commune near Portland in rural Washington state. It was run by Meryl's father, a Vietnam vet and private investigator turned New Age guru who went by the name Harvey Freeman.

The commune operated the Center Family Restaurant, the first natural food restaurant in Portland. it was a popular gathering spot for the growing counterculture, including then-Portland Trail Blazer basketball player Bill Walton. The commune members worked for free as part of their religion.

The commune broke up in 1977 after Freeman was accused of having sex with a number of his female followers. Hurwitz and Meryl split up, and Freeman sold the commune property and restaurant, reportedly clearing $600,000.

In 1981, Hurwitz sued Freeman for $150,000 in back wages. Freeman paid Hurwitz $10,000 to settle the suit, then used the remaining money to travel the world. Freeman moved to Los Angeles in the mid-1980s, where he worked as a licensed polygraph expert for a private investigator.

Hurwitz used his $10,000 to lease an old evangelical church on Portland's skid row. He borrowed an additional $80,000 from his father, remodeled the large second-floor auditorium, added sound and light systems, and reopened the church as Starry Night on December 22, 1982.

Hurwitz showed a complete disregard for the law from the start. He kept most of his business off the books, rarely signing contracts or receipts. He never kept payroll records or paid withholding taxes on his employees. Payments were usually made in cash immediately after each show, with no records made of the transactions.

Overcrowding was a problem from the start. The Fire Marshall shut down the very first Starry Night show because of severe overcrowding.

According to several former Starry Night employees, Hurwitz routinely over-sold his shows. In the beginning, Hurwitz booked his own shows and printed up extra tickets. When other promoters began renting his hall, they insisted the tickets be printed and sold by independent companies, like TicketMaster.

Hurwitz responded by printing up counterfeit and selling them out of Day for Night, a nightclub he opened just a new blocks from Starry Night. He got away with this scam until the counterfeit John Lee Hooker tickets were discovered.

But Hurwitz planned even more serious crimes, too.

Approximately five months after Starry Night opened, an employee named John Stanley stole $3,000 in cash from a safe in the club. Hurwitz responded by tricking Stanley's parents into flying to Portland from Texas. Hurwitz had several employees call them up and tell them their son was critically injured in a car accident and not expected to live.

Hurwitz planned to kidnap Stanley's parents when they arrived at the Portland airport and hold them hostage until their son returned the money.

But, alerted to the plot by a suspicious family friend, the Portland International Airport police discovered Hurwitz and a Starry Night employee named Evan Parrish waiting for the flight to arrive from Texas. The police apprehended both Hurwitz and Parrish, but Stanley's parents refused to press charges, and the two men were released.

The incident is documented in an airport police report dated May 22, 1983.

In the mid-1980's, Hurwitz hired a former Navy sailor named George Castagnola to be Starry Night's sound engineer. A few years earlier, on April 14, 1981, Castagnola was arrested on attempted murder charges. He fired a gun during a police drug raid at a house where he was staying. The charges were later reduced to a single count of drug possession during a negotiated settlement.

Harvey Freeman returned to Portland in the summer of 1988. He had spent all his money and needed a job. Hurwitz hired him to take tickets at Starry Night. Freeman kept his mouth shut about the counterfeit tickets.

Tim Moreau went to work as publicity director for Starry Night in March 1989. A native of New Orleans, Moreau moved to Portland to attend Reed College in August 1986. He took an official leave of absence from Reed when he began working at Starry Night.

Moreau had an interest in the music business, and was thinking of opening his own club before returning to school to earn a degree and become a college professor.

Around the time Moreau went to work at Starry Night, Hurwitz began to believe that the drug dealers and junkies who frequented skid row were hurting his businesses. He was especially angry at a nearby second-hand store and grocery called Sav-Mor Grub, which was selling hypodermic needles for a dollar.

On July 22, 1989, Hurwitz and George Castagnola tried to burn Sav-Mor Grub down. They poured gasoline under the front door during the early morning hours and set it on fire. The business was not severely damaged, however, and it continued to operate.

A little more than a month later, on August 24, Hurwitz and Castagnola returned to Sav-Mor Grub. With other Starry Night employees acting as look-outs, the two men broke into the building and planted a bomb made up of a propane tank and dynamite. The explosion leveled the building and damaged a number of nearby businesses, including an Asian grocery and the Sea Tramp Tattoo parlour.

Although the bombing was investigated by the Portland Police Bureau, the Portland Fire Bureau, and the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, Hurwitz and Castagnola were not linked to the crime until after the statute of limitations had expired.

By now Larry Hurwitz was completely out of control. He had gotten away with crimes ranging from fraud to attempted kidnapping to arson. And the worst was still to come.

The murder of Tim Moreau

By January 1990, Larry Hurwitz had made tens of thousands of dollars selling counterfeit tickets to shows at his own club. But the scheme was exposed at the John Lee Hooker show on January 20.

Hurwitz knew he was in serious trouble. Other promoters would not work with him if they thought he was stealing from them. So Hurwitz decided he needed a fall guy to take responsibility for the counterfeit, and he chose Tim Moreau.

But Moreau refused to play along, and he threatened to go the police with what he knew. That's when Hurwitz decided to kill him.

On January 21, the day after the counterfeit tickets were discovered, Hurwitz met with Harvey Freeman and George Castagnola. Hurwitz said Moreau was going to destroy Starry Night, and he denounced him as a "traitor" and a "rat."

Castagnola volunteered to help Hurwitz kill Moreau and hide the body. Freeman didn't want to have anything to do with the murder. But he loaned Hurwitz his Cadillac, which had a trunk large enough to carry a body.

That evening, Hurwitz and Castagnola drove Freeman's Cadillac up the Columbia River Gorge, crossed over to the Washington side of the river, headed up into the mountains and dug a grave next to an abandoned logging road.

The two men then returned to Starry Night, where Castagnola made a garrotte out of a broom handle. He cut the handle into two short lengths, drilled holes through the center of each length, and tied them together with a length of speaker wire.

Castagnola refused to kill Moreau himself, so Hurwitz said he would do it. Hurwitz spent some time practicing how to slip the garrotte over Moreau's head, using Castagnola's forearm as his neck.

Hurwitz then arranged for Moreau to meet him at Starry Night on the evening of January 23rd. Moreau showed up at Hurwitz's office, located on the second floor, just off the balcony. Castagnola was waiting in his office just down the hall. After meeting with Castagnola for a few minutes, Hurwitz suggested that the two of them go to Day for Night for a bite to eat.

Moreau left the office first, followed by Hurwitz. Castagnola came out of his office, stepping in front of Moreau. Hurwitz slipped the garrotte over Moreau's head and jerked it tight around his neck.

Moreau's eyes bugged out and his face turned bright red as Hurwitz pulled him down on the floor. Castagnola held Moreau's legs down until he stopped struggling.

Moreau stopped fighting after a few minutes. Hurwitz and Castagnola were not sure he was dead, however, so Castagnola grabbed a roll of silver duct tape and wrapped it around his head to suffocate him.

Hurwitz and Castagnola then stuffed Moreau's body into large black garbage bags and taped them together. Then they hauled his body down the back stairs and dumped it in the trunk of the Cadillac.

Hurwitz and Castagnola drove the body up the Columbia Rover Gorge, crossed over to the Washington side of the river, and buried it in the grave they had dug the day before. Then they returned to Starry Night and ordered a pizza to be delivered, saving the receipt to document they were at the club.

As they ate pizza, Hurwitz and Castagnola worked out a cover story. If asked, they would claim that Moreau confessed counterfeiting the tickets and offered to lead Hurwitz to his home, where the money was stashed.

But, according to this story, Moreau shook Hurwitz at a red light and disappeared into the night. After agreeing on this story, Hurwitz called Moreau's answering machine several time, leaving messages asking him to come back with the money.

The next day, on January 24, Castagnola drove Moreau's car to the Portland International Airport and left it in the long-term parking lot to make it appear that Moreau had flown out of town. Hurwitz followed Castagnola to the airport and gave him a ride back to town.

On January 29, Moreau's landlady called his parents in New Orleans to say she hadn't seen him for several days. Mike and Penny Moreau filed a missing persons' report with the Portland Police Bureau.

The police were aware of the counterfeit ticket controversy and asked Hurwitz what he knew about Tim's disappearance. Hurwitz repeated the cover story he and Castagnola worked out after the murder.

The police were suspicious about the story and asked Hurwitz to take a lie detector test. Hurwitz said he would think about it, and then conspired with Harvey Freeman, a licensed polygraph examiner, to fake one.

In early February, Hurwitz and Freeman flew to Los Angeles and visited the Chapman Detective Agency, where Freeman had workd as a polygraph examiner.

Using the agency's lie detector machine, Freeman spent hours showing Hurwitz how to pass such a test. After they returned to Portland, Hurwitz hired a private polygraph expert to give him a test. Satisfied that he passed it, Hurwitz presented the results to the police as proof of his innocence.

A short time later, Hurwitz spoke about the counterfeit ticket controversy at a meeting of the Portland Music Association, a non-profit organization representing local musicians, promoters and club owners. Hurwitz repeated the story about Moreau confessing to the ticket scheme, and he said a police lie detector test cleared him of any involvement in the counterfeiting or Moreau's disappearance.

Fiona Martin, a music writer for the Willamette Week alternative newspaper, was at the meeting. She wrote a story about Hurwitz's accusations against Moreau.

The story prompted a former Starry Night employee to call the paper. He was Evan Parrish, the employee who had been detained at the Portland airport with Hurwitz during the 1983 kidnapping attempt.

Martin passed the call on to Jim Redden, the paper's investigative reporter. Redden interviewed Parrish at length about the attempted kidnapping. When he tracked down the airport police report on the incident, Redden knew he had a real story.

Redden spent the next four months investigating Hurwitz. He discovered that the police believed Moreau was dead, and that they considered Hurwitz to be a suspect.

Redden also learned that George Castagnola had been at the final meeting between Hurwitz and Moreau, and that Castagnola had once been charged with attempted murder.

In addition, Redden learned that Freeman was a lie detector expert.

And Redden talked to many music industry insiders who believed Starry Night was financed with drug money.

Willamette Week published Redden's story on June 22. Titled "Missing and Presumed Dead," it strongly suggested that Hurwitz and Castagnola killed Moreau, and that Freeman had coached Hurwitz through the polygraph test. The story also recounted the various drug rumors about Hurwitz and Starry Night.

The story had an immediate and devastating impact on Starry Night. Promoters stopped doing business with Hurwitz and attendance dropped off dramatically. Hurwitz panicked and began buying large quantities silver bullion, betting that its value would increase in the coming years.

On January 31, 1991 — less than seven months after Willamette Week published Redden's story — Hurwitz sold Starry Night to Double Tee, another Portland promotions company.

Redden left Willamette Week in March 1991 to start his own alternative paper, PDXS. It debuted on April 1. The next month, Hurwitz and Freeman sued Willamette Week and Redden for libel.

Among other things, the suit alleged Redden's story caused them to suffer humiliation, scorn, embarrassment, anxiety, sleeplessness, loss of esteem and respect among members of community, loss of well-established business relations, and loss of profits that would have come from those relations.

The lawsuit was essentially another attempt by Hurwitz and Freeman to cover up their roles in the murder. They thought they could force Redden to reveal the sources for his story. Instead, the suit was their first mistake — and it ultimately led to Hurwitz's downfall.

The false tax filings

The depositions in the lawsuit took up most of February and March, 1992. In the end, Redden did not reveal any of his sources. But Hurwitz created serious tax problems for himself.

As it turned out, Hurwitz had not filed personal or corporate income tax returns for 1987, 1988, 1989 or 1990. He then filed returns for all four years on a single day, November 1, 1991, to support his claim of lost earning. But when Redden saw the returns, he immediately realized they were phony.

For starters, the corporate returns were transparently incomplete. There were no records to prove the income figures were accurate — no bank statements or documents filed by any accounting firm. And, although Hurwitz claimed massive deductions each year, he did not provide any schedules, receipts, cancelled checks, or any other records to back up these deductions. There were no wage statements for employees, no social security or employee payroll tax withholding forms. No rent receipts. No utility bills. No contracts with any of the bands who played at Starry Night. No documents from the businesses that sold food and liquor. Nothing but a hand-scribbled lists of figures stapled to each form.

According to these forms, Starry Night made just enough profit to pay Hurwitz a minimum wage during the first three years: $5,181 in 1987, $6,061 in 1988, and $6,212 in 1989. Hurwitz also claimed that he made $4,800 in 1990 — even though he reported that Starry Night lost $2,489 that year.

These figures were obviously phony. Hurwitz claimed he made between $400 and $517 a month between 1987 and 1990. But Redden's research indicated that he lived in two nice apartments during those years, one at a fancy complex along the Willamette River called McCormick's Pier. The other was at the top of Barnes Road in the city's ritzy West Hills. He couldn't pay rent and utilities with the income he was claiming.

Pressed about the returns during the depositions, Hurwitz reluctantly admitted they were false — that they did not include all of the money he had earned between 1987 and 1990.

Hurwitz would not say exactly how much money he actually made. But he reluctantly admitted it was more than he claimed to the IRS.

The lawsuit was thrown out of court on June 26, 1992. A little more than a month later, Redden published a story titled "The Truth About Larry Hurwitz" in the August 3, 1992 issue of PDXS. Among other things, the story charged that Hurwitz failed to report hundreds of thousands of dollars on his 1987, 1988, 1989 and 1990 tax filings.

The IRS opened an investigation into Hurwitz's tax filings a short time later. Investigators quickly realized that the filings were false.

But — because Hurwitz didn't keep business records or a personal checking account — they could not prove how much money Hurwitz had actually paid himself. So the IRS could not file a case against him.

This situation drug on for the next five years. During this time, Mike and Penny Moreau's health began to decline. They suffered from stress, depression, high blood pressure, nocturnal teeth grinding, and sleeplessness.

After giving up hope that Tim would ever be found alive, they began to give up hope that Hurwitz would ever be arrested and charged with the crime.

A lucky break changes everything

In 1995, Hurwitz began booking American rock bands into music clubs in Vietnam. Young Vietnamese were getting into rock and roll, and Hurwitz began working with club owners in Ho Chi Mihn City. He began travelling between the two countries, eventually establishing a home in Vietnam.

In October 1997, Hurwitz returned to big time music promoting. He put together a U.S.-Vietnam Reconciliation Concert featuring Sting, the internationally-acclaimed rock musician who played bass for The Police.

The E! cable television station documented the concert for an hour-long special titled "Sting in Vietnam." It included several scenes of Hurwitz talking about how honored he was to be involved in such a spiritually significant event.

Then Hurwitz's luck changed. In late 1997, the Portland police raided a local gold and silver dealer suspected of receiving stolen property. He had heard about the problems with Hurwitz's tax returns and offered to cut a deal with the District Attorney's Office.

In exchange for a reduced sentence, he revealed that Hurwitz had bought nearly $10,000 worth of silver from him in 1990 — when Hurwitz was claiming he was paying himself less than minimum wage.

More than that, the gold and silver dealer knew other local coin dealers who had sold Hurwitz large quantities of silver at that time. The police turned the information over to the IRS, who tracked down all of the dealers and determined that Hurwitz bought approximately $420,000 worth of silver in 1990.

Hurwitz was indicted on four counts of federal income tax evasion on February 19, 1997. He was in Vietnam at the time and refused to return to be arraigned on the charges.

A warrant was issued for his arrest in May 1997. But, because Vietnam does not have an extradition treaty with the U.S. government, Hurwitz still did not return to face the charges.

Months passed. Then, in November 1997, Redden wrote a story for PDXS accusing the government of giving Hurwitz special treatment. in the story, Redden pointed out that Hurwitz had received State Department approval to do business with government of Vietnam putting together the Sting concert.

"The State Department granted Hurwitz a travel visa even though he was under investigation for income tax evasion," Redden wrote.

A few weeks later, the State Department revoked Hurwitz's passport and he was deported in the custody of the U.S. Marshall's Service, who escorted him to Portland, where he was arrested on the tax evasion charges and lodged in the Multnomah County Justice Center jail.

The IRS tax case against Hurwitz

Hurwitz was formally arraigned on the tax evasion charges on December 22, 1997. He plead not guilty. Mike and Penny Moreau flew out from New Orleans to witness the arraignment. They were pleased that Hurwitz was finally being charged with something, even though it wasn't the murder of their son.

Multnomah County Chief deputy District Attorney Norm Frink was hopeful the tax charges would eventually crack the murder case. He believed that some of Hurwitz's former associates in the Portland area knew what had happened, but were afraid to come forward as long as Hurwitz was free.

Frink had a hunch some of these witnesses would step forward if Hurwitz was convicted on the tax charges and sentenced to jail. So he arranged for two Portland police investigators to be assigned to the murder case.

Herschell Lange and Kent Perry began reviewing the files and contacting potential witnesses in early 1998.

The tax evasion case against Hurwitz was airtight. The coin dealers were prepared to swear he bought over $400,000 worth of silver at a time when he told the IRS he was getting by on $4,000 to $6,000 a year. On April 22, Hurwitz cut a deal. He plead guilty to one count of income tax evasion in exchange for a one-year prison sentence.

The next month, the police got the break they were waiting for. A source called the detectives to say that a woman named Katherine Hand knew Hurwitz killed Moreau.

Hand and Harvey Freeman were former lovers. She worked at Starry Night from August 1998 to March 1989.

Hand checked herself into a drug rehab program in November 1990. During a treatment session, Hand told the source that she knew Hurwitz killed Moreau.

Lange and Perry tracked Hand down in May 1998. At first she denied knowing anything about the murder. But then, in early August, Hand visited Freeman at a New Age resort in Washington state, where he was working as a bartender.

Hand called the police after the visit. This time, she said Freeman told her about the murder during their visit.

The police drove to Washington to question Freeman on August 19. But he had fled to Thailand, where he maintained a small home in a remote fishing village.

Working with the U.S. Attorney's Office, D.A. Frink obtained a warrant for Freeman's arrest as a material witness in the murder case. Lange and Perry flew to Thailand on September 1, where they arrested Freeman and returned him to Portland a few days later.

Freeman promptly cut a deal with the D.A.'s office. He agreed to tell them everything he knew about the murder in exchange for complete immunity. Convinced that Freeman did not actually participate in the murder, Frink agreed.

The police interviewed Freeman five times between September 8 and 15, piecing together the story about how Hurwitz and Castagnola conspired to murder Moreau, hide his body and cover up the crime.

Freeman also told the police about how Hurwitz planned and carried out the Sav-Mor Grub bombing, solving the crime even though the statute of limitations had passed.

And Freeman admitted helping Hurwitz pass the lie detector test a few weeks after Moreau was murdered.

The police continued interviewing witnesses, including Hurwitz's former girlfriend, Beatrice Wolbaum, and Karin DeWolff, George Castagnola's former girlfriend. On October 20, DeWolff told the police that Castagnola admitted helping Hurwitz kill Moreau and burying his body.

Castagnola was arrested and charged with murder on October 27. He was picked up outside the Rose Garden, the home of the Portland Trail Blazers, where he had been working as a sound and lighting engineer.

After consulting with a court-appointed attorney, Castagnola cut a deal with the D.A.'s office. He agreed to cooperate with the investigation in exchange for a 10-year sentence. On October 29, Castagnola told investigators how he and Hurwitz conspired to murder Moreau, hide his body, and blame him for the counterfeit tickets.

The next day, the police took Castagnola up into the mountains where Moreau's body was buried. Castagnola could not find the grave because the landscape has changed so much. The large Skamania Lodge resort had been built near where the body was buried, changing the lay of the land.

Castagnola appeared in court to plead guilty to his role in Moreau's murder on November 20. Mike and Penny Moreau flew out from Portland to hear Castagnola say, "I plead guilty to aiding and abetting Larry Hurwitz in causing the death of Timothy Douglas Moreau, including disposing of the body of Timothy Douglas Moreau."

Immediately after being sentenced to 10 years in prison, Castagnola testified before a Multnomah County Grand Jury investigating the murder. The grand jury had already heard from Freeman, Wolbaum, DeWolff, and numerous other people with information about the case. One of them was Redden, who confirmed the accuracy of his stories.

After hearing from Castagnola, the Grand Jury indicted Hurwitz on five counts of aggravated murder. The maximum possible penalty was death.

Hurwitz was arraigned on the murder charges on November 25, 1998. He plead not guilty and was returned to federal prison to finish his tax evasion sentence. When his sentence ended, Hurwitz was transferred to Multnomah County's Inverness Jail to wait for his murder trial to begin.

Justice at last?

The stakes were high for both sides. Hurwitz was facing the death penalty. At the same time, the case against him was entirely circumstantial. The police had not found Moreau's body, and had no physical evidence to prove that a crime had actually occurred.

Frink knew it would be hard to convince all 12 jurors to convict Hurwitz of murder if he couldn't prove Moreau was actually dead.

So the question came down to what testimony would be allowed at the trial. Freeman, Castagnola, Hand, DeWolff, Wolbaum, Redden and number of other witnesses were already set to testify. But Frink wanted more.

Frink rolled the dice on July 21, 2000. During a procedural hearing, Frink asked the court to allow him to argue that Hurwitz was a mobster — that he ran his business as an ongoing criminal conspiracy.

As proof, Frink moved that he be allowed to present evidence of Hurwitz's other criminal activities into evidence at the trial. Among other things, Frink wanted to tell the jury about Hurwitz's tax evasion conviction, and about his role in the Sav-Mor Grub bombing.

Hurwitz's court-appointed lawyers adamantly opposed Frink's request, arguing that such testimony would hopelessly prejudice the jury against their client. In the end, the court ruled that Frink could argue Hurwitz was a mobster, and could present evidence about his previous crimes.

That decision sealed Hurwitz's fate. He and his lawyers gave up and cut a deal. On August 21, Hurwitz plead "no contest" to one count of murder.

Mike and Penny Moreau flew out from New Orleans to watch Hurwitz enter his plea. Afterward, Mike Moreau said he felt he could finally exhale after 10 years of holding his breath.

The plea bargain deal was complicated. The Moreau's desperately wanted to find their son's body. Hurwitz said he knew where it was, but he wanted something in return.

In the end, Frink and the parents agreed that Hurwitz would only be sentenced to 10 years in jail if he found the body. He would be sentenced to 12 years if he made a good faith effort to find the body but could not locate it. And he would be sentenced to life if he made no serious effort to find the body.

Hurwitz did everything he could to find the body. He slogged through mud and dug under rocks and fallen trees. But, in the end, he could not find the exact spot where he and Castagnola buried Tim Moreau.

Hurwitz was formally sentenced on September 25, 2000. Over two dozen members of Moreau's family travelled to Portland for the sentencing, including Mike and Penny. They made victim impact statements at the sentencing hearing, explaining how Hurwitz had destroyed their lives by killing their son.

But despite their tearful stories, the judge upheld the deal and Hurwitz was only sentenced to 12 years in prison. With time off for good behavior, he was reelased in 2008.

Epilogue

On November 18, 2000, Mike and Penny Moreau filed a civil wrongful death lawsuit against Larry Hurwitz in Multnomah County Circuit Court. It sought compensation Tim Moreau's lost wages and future earning capacity, along with $500,000 for the Moreau's "loss of society, companionship and services of their son." Hurwtiz settled the suit just before the trial for $3 million.

Michael Morey, the lawyer representing the family, said he believes Hurwitz still has money stashed away which should go to the Moreau's.


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