Plea deal reached in murder of 94-year-old WWII veteran


(WJW) — A plea deal was reached Tuesday in the case of a man accused of murdering a 94-year-old WWII veteran in Cleveland.

Michael Dudas pleaded guilty to aggravated murder, aggravated robbery and misuse of credit cards for the crime that happened in April 2020.

Police responded to a home on Plymouth Rd. in the city’s Old Brooklyn neighborhood to check on Charles Vonderau. According to a press release, Vonderau was found unresponsive and pronounced dead a short time later. His death was determined to be a homicide.

According to the Cuyahoga County Prosecutor’s Office, Dudas struck the victim multiple times with a hammer and then stole his credit cards. Authorities said he threw the murder weapon on a neighbor’s roof as he fled the scene.

The prosecutor’s office said Cleveland police’s homicide unit linked Dudas to the crime through multiple pieces of evidence including DNA, credit card transactions and video surveillance.

A press release stated Dudas used Vonderau’s credit cards at nearby gas stations and ATMs between April 14 and April 18.

The victim’s daughter spoke Tuesday in court, asking for the harshest punishment possible.

Dudas received life in prison with eligibility of parole after serving 28 to 29 and a half years.

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