Daniel Wozniak was found guilty of a gruesome double murder on Wednesday afternoon and now faces a possible death sentence, PEOPLE confirms.
The California theater actor, 31, killed his neighbor, 26-year-old Army veteran Sam Herr, and Herr’s friend Juri “Julie” Kibuishi in 2010 as part of a ploy to clean out Herr’s $62,000 savings so he could pay for his upcoming wedding to his actress fianc e Rachel Buffett.
On May 20, 2010, Wozniak shot Herr twice in the head with a .38-caliber semiautomatic pistol after luring him to the attic of an empty theater on the Joint Forces Training Base in Los Alamitos.
Hours later, he lured an unsuspecting Kibuishi, a college student studying fashion, into Herr’s bedroom and then shot her twice in the head before staging the crime scene to make it look like Herr had sexually assaulted her.
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Wozniak hoped to “use his magical acting powers to trick the dumb police,” Prosecutor Matt Murphy told jurors on Wednesday during his closing argument, according to The Los Angeles Times.
Instead, he was arrested by police at his bachelor party just days later after they discovered he stole Herr’s ATM card and convinced a teen to pull money out of Herr’s bank account.
Wozniak eventually confessed to the killings while in police custody. “I killed Julie, I killed Sam,” Wozniak allegedly told detectives. “Sam came first. It was all just about the money, that was it.”
Evidence showed from Wozniak’s computer showed that he had searched for “quick ways to kill people.” Police also found a backpack Wozniak gave his brother Tim that contained a bloody shirt and gloves, Herr’s cell phone, his checkbook, wallet, and passport, Murphy said during his opening statements on Dec. 9.
Wozniak’s defense attorneys did not argue with the prosecution’s case, calling no witnesses and presenting no evidence. They simply hope to avoid a death sentence for their client.
In March, attorney Scott Sanders told PEOPLE that what Wozniak did was “a terrible crime,” but said that it doesn’t merit the death penalty.
“It has brought too much pain to these victims, we understand that,” he said. “But the death penalty will never bring the closure [the victims’ families] are looking for. He is willing to plead guilty and begin immediately serving life without the possibility of parole.”