by Sue Ann Rybak
LeRoy Wilson, charged with murder in the killing of Regina Brunner-Holmes, 85, in her East Mt. Airy home in June 2015, pleaded not guilty in court on Aug. 4, according to the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office.
In an email to the Chestnut Hill Local on Aug. 5, Assistant District Attorney Richard Sax said Wilson’s trial is scheduled for May 2017 before Common Pleas Court Judge Glenn B. Bronson.
Brunner-Holmes, a longtime employee of the Chestnut Hill Local, was found in her home beaten, stabbed and with her throat slashed after she failed to show up for work on June 29, 2015.
Four days later, on July 4, police arrested Wilson, 38, of Philadelphia, a neighborhood handyman, in Norristown after homicide detectives discovered substantial evidence linking him to the crime, including the victim’s laptop and surveillance footage of Wilson using Brunner-Holmes’ ATM card.
Police said they believed Wilson, who was doing work for Brunner-Holmes, decided to kill her after she caught him attempting to steal something.
According to police, Wilson had been arrested multiple times for violent crimes in both Florida and Philadelphia.
Wilson, who is being held at the Curran-Fromhold Correctional Facility, faces murder charges. He was also charged with seven other criminal acts, including robbery with intent to inflict serious bodily injury, identity theft, receiving stolen property and possession of an instrument of crime.
Last month, the District Attorney’s Office decided not to seek the death penalty for Wilson because he had “a significant mental health history together with [the victim’s] family input,” Sax said