Liam McAtasney Wiki
Liam McAtasney Biography
Liam McAtasney could have gotten away with it. Despite being questioned by the police several times about the disappearance of his longtime friend, Sarah Stern, 19, as he was the last known person seen with her on December 2, 2016, investigators they initially had no proof that Stern was killed.
In the early morning of December 3, the young woman’s car was found abandoned on a bridge in Belmar, New Jersey. There was no body, and no one claimed to know where it was, so police were considering the possibility of Stern taking her own life, according to Asbury Park Press.
McAtasney was very happy to accept that narrative, even nurture it. The Asbury Park Press reported that McAtasney, who was later convicted of killing Stern, told police that she had been suicidal in the past and that Stern had had problems with her father. She was hoping to move to Canada soon, McAtasney told police.
But while McAtasney told investigators that he had last seen Stern before going to work on December 2, which was technically true according to his confession, he did not mention that it was because he was murdering her.
McAtasney Told His Friend That He Killed Stern & Threw Her Body Over the Side of a Bridge So He Could Steal Her Money
While the police had little to follow, there were two other people who knew what actually happened.
Preston Taylor was an accessory to the crime. He eventually testified against McAtasney and admitted his part. Anthony Curry was an old friend whom McAtasney trusted. But Curry went to the police with what he had been told, and from there he worked with the police to get McAtasney to tell the true story of what happened to Stern while they secretly recorded him.
That confession was the lynchpin of the case. Without him, what happened to Stern may never have been known.
The videotaped confession was shown in court to jurors, and McAtasney was eventually sentenced to life in prison for Stern’s murder.
In the recorded confession, McAtasney says he planned the crime for half a year so he could steal money left to him by Stern’s mother, who died of cancer in 2013.
He described how he killed Stern, hid his body while he went to work, and then went back to find Stern’s body and took it to the bridge to dump it and make it look like a suicide.
McAtasney Said He Didn’t Get as Much Money as He Thought But He Got Enough to Live Comfortably & to Throw Parties
In McAtasney’s confession to Curry, which was taped inside Curry’s car, he begins by complaining that he didn’t get as much money as he thought he would get, saying, “The worst part is that I thought I was going [with] $ 50,000 to $ 100,000 in my pocket, ”but the amount he took from Stern was closer to $ 10,000.
“She had a lot of money and I didn’t even get a quarter,” McAtasney told Curry.
He also said that the money seemed to have been burned somehow and that the bills were old. “It’s from the eighties, buddy. It’s old,” McAtasney said, adding that he hadn’t tried to spend it or put it in a bank because he thought the bills would be conspicuous, so it was going to “stay low for a while.”
McAtasney Said It Took About a Half Hour to Kill Stern & Her Dog Just Watched
In some of the more graphic parts of the confession, McAtasney said that he thought it would only take a couple of minutes to kill Stern, but he talked about how he “strangled” her saying, “I practically hung up on her. It took me half an hour to kill her. I thought it would take a couple of minutes. ”
McAtasney went on to say that he finally let go of Stern and she seemed to be having a seizure, so he stuffed a T-shirt in her mouth so she wouldn’t throw up and held her nose. At that moment, she put the timer on her phone.
“And it took me about half an hour after pressing start. There’s so much shit that you don’t take into account, “she said.
Another thing McAtasney told Curry is that his biggest concern was the intervention of Stern’s dog, but as it all happened, “his dog stood there and watched him kill her,” he said.
Once Stern finally succumbed to the 6’2 man’s attack, she moved her body to some bushes in her backyard and went to work to work, McAtasney told Curry.
When McAtasney got off work, he returned to the house to dispose of Stern’s body and search for the safe for which he killed her.
McAtasney Said He Strapped Stern’s Body Into the Passenger Seat of Her Own Car & Drove Her to the Bridge to Dump It
According to McAtasney’s confession, he and Taylor met to rob the safe from Stern’s home and dispose of his body. McAtasney said he put Stern in the passenger seat of his own car and buckled him up to make it look like he was sleeping, then he drove to the Route 35 bridge in Belmar. Taylor followed him in his car.
Once on the bridge, McAtasney said he had a hard time lifting Stern up one side, and again said it was unexpected. As he struggled with it, he told Curry that three cars were passing, so he found “superhuman strength” and quickly shoved him back into the car at an awkward angle as they passed.
“And three cars go by, and I’m losing my shit because I could easily have been a cop,” McAtasney told Curry.
After the cars passed, McAtasney said Taylor helped him dump Stern’s body over the side of the bridge into the frozen river where a strong current leads into the sea. His body has never been found.
The two 19-year-olds drove off in Taylor’s car, leaving Stern’s car with the keys still on the bridge in an effort to divert police from their trail.
McAtasney Said He Had No Feelings About the Murder
At the end of the recorded confession, McAtasney told Curry: “I don’t feel different and I don’t think about it. You always think that you are going to try new things and that you are going to change. Does nothing. It’s weird … what, are you going to live a boring life? ”
He then assures Curry that he won’t let Taylor do anything “dumb”, saying, “I did something really dumb and planned it for half a year. I’m patient. I have it.”
According to the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office, McAtasney was charged on February 2, 2017 with “murder in the first degree, felony murder in the first degree, robbery in the first degree, desecration of human remains in the second degree, conspiracy in the second degree ( to desecrate human remains) and second-degree apprehension hindering “.
He was found guilty on all charges and will never get out of jail.
Taylor, 19, was also charged with “second-degree desecration of human remains, second-degree conspiracy (to desecrate human remains) and second-degree arrest” because investigators said he “assisted McAtasney in moving and, in ultimately dispose of Stern’s body remains to avoid detection, ”according to the Monmouth County prosecutor’s office.
Taylor was sentenced to 18 years in prison and is eligible for parole in 2032 according to the New Jersey Department of Corrections.