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York County man facing Bucks County trial, accused of killing wife in '81

Liz Evans Scolforo
York Dispatch
William Walter Korzon

A York County man accused of killing his wife in 1981, when they lived in Bucks County, is now facing trial there.

William Walter Korzon appeared for his preliminary hearing before Bucks County District Judge Jean Seaman on Wednesday, May 22, and waived his case to Bucks County Common Pleas Court, according to court records.

Korzon, 76, of the 200 block of Barcroft Road in Lower Windsor Township, remains in Bucks County Prison without bail, charged with homicide, solicitation to commit homicide, perjury and four counts of forgery, according to court records.

Police said the investigation into the disappearance of Gloria Korzon has been ongoing since 1981, when the Korzons lived in Bucks County. She was declared dead in 1997, Bucks County District Attorney Matthew Weintraub has said.

Weintraub hasn't given up hope that Gloria Korzon's body will eventually be found, he said at a news conference in April.

"Whether that occurs remains to be seen," he said. "(But) we cannot just wait and hope for this case to improve."

Homicide victim Gloria Korzon

Circumstantial case: The DA acknowledged it will be a difficult — and circumstantial — case to prosecute because of the absence of a body. The victim would have turned 76 years old on Easter Sunday, he said.

"The shadow of this case has loomed over us for decades, and we did not give up," Warrington Township (Bucks County) Police Chief Daniel Friel said at the news conference, adding there was a sense of urgency to close the case because those involved are getting older.

Meanwhile, William Korzon appears to have stayed below the radar, according to Weintraub.

"I think he was living a relatively regular life," and he moved to York County about 25 years ago, the DA said. The couple had no children together, he said.

Admitted batterer? William Korzon has admitted that he beat and battered Gloria Korzon for years after their marriage in January 1967, according to allegations in charging documents.

"Police records show that during the course of their marriage, William Korzon ... (was) the perpetrator of repeated domestic abuse towards his wife Gloria," charging documents against him state.

In December 1967, he was arrested in Springfield, Massachusetts, for threatening to kill her, after which he was committed to a state mental hospital there and eventually moved to a veterans hospital in Connecticut, according to documents.

The Korzons moved to the Philadelphia area in 1968. Between that time and 1981, various police agencies in the area investigated numerous violent assaults in which William Korzon assaulted and threatened to kill his wife, according to charging documents.

Those assaults left her with injuries including a broken arm, broken collarbone and  bruising and damage to the bones in her nose — many of which required hospitalizations, documents allege.

"Gloria documented Korzon's history of abuse against her in a series of letters she wrote to her attorney," according to documents. "She also sent a letter to her father and advised him not to open it unless something happened to her."

She disappeared March 6, 1981, after which "It is as though she ceased to exist," according to charging documents.

Lied, concealed, profited? "Within days, William Korzon went to Gloria's place of employment and advised her manager to terminate her because of poor mental and physical health," charging documents state. "He retrieved her belongings and requested that her final paycheck be sent to their home."

He forged her signature on checks issued to her and filed a joint income tax return four months after she went missing, documents allege.

"In the months and years following Gloria's disappearance, William Korzon engaged in a series of actions to lie, conceal and profit" from his wife's disappearance and death, documents state. "He forged documents, lied to police investigators and perjured himself in court, all in an effort to give the appearance that Gloria was still alive."

William Walter Korzon

In 1986, her driver's license, Social Security card, medical insurance card and voter registration card were found in William Korzon's home and were given to police by his girlfriend at the time, documents state.

Tried to have cop killed? Charging documents allege that in the months after his wife's disappearance, Wiliam Korzon tried to enlist a former tenant of his Bucks County home to kill a police officer.

The former tenant in 1986 told police that William Korzon solicited him "to help ambush and murder Sgt. Joseph Adams of the Warrington Township Police Department and that Sgt. Adams should be 'blown away,'" charging documents allege.

Adams was one of the officers investigating Gloria Korzon's disappearance, police said.

— Reach Liz Evans Scolforo at or on Twitter at @LizScolforoYD.