Convicted Murderer Damien Ditz to be Sentenced Today at Clarion County Courthouse
(Photo by Dave Cyphert of ProPoint Media)
Ditz is slated to be sentenced at 1:00 p.m. at the Clarion County Courthouse by Clarion County President Judge James Arner after his conviction of third-degree murder and other charges in December 2018.
Arner could give Ditz up to 40 years in state prison, according to Clarion County District Attorney Mark Aaron, who prosecuted the case. The maximum sentence on a third-degree murder conviction in Pennsylvania is 20 to 40 years.
Ditz shot and killed Seaburn in the vicinity of a trailer park in the Lake Lucy, Washington Township, Clarion County, Pa., area in the early evening hours of March 1, 2017, while the pair sat in Seaburn’s car, which Ditz was driving.
On the night of the shooting, Ditz gave state police two different versions of what happened. But in June 2017 during seven-plus hours of questioning at the state police barracks in Ridgway, he told a third story.
During the June 2017 interview, Ditz confessed to police that he and Seaburn, who was a 22-year old Clarion University student from Curwensville, Pa., at the time of her death, were arguing over $130.00 Ditz had lent to a friend. He said the gun, a 45-caliber Glock, had been sitting on the dashboard of the car since the couple had gone fishing in Pymatuning the night before.
According to Ditz, when he turned into the trailer park area, the gun slid off the dashboard and he caught it and placed it next to the console of the car. Then, when he and Seaburn were arguing, he picked up the gun to place it in the back seat, waved it around while telling Seaburn he would get the money back, and the gun went off killing Seaburn.
That story differed from the first two he told state police on the night of the killing.
At first, Ditz said the gun had slid off the dashboard, hit the console and gone off on its own. He then changed his story later the same night to say that the gun slid off the dashboard and when he caught it the gun went off.
But when pressed by Aaron during the trial if he had pulled the trigger, Ditz answered that he had.
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