Monka Homicide Hearing at Luzerne County Courthouse


(WBRE/WYOU-TV)      It’s a crime that shocked a Luzerne County Community. The beating and stabbing death of a 71-year-old man, today four people charged in connection with the murder are in court. Lead I-Team reporter Andy Mehalshick is at the Luzerne County Courthouse.
Investigators say Joseph Monka was viciously attacked in his Arch Street home and that is granddaughter took part in the murder.
    Prosecutors say 17-year-old Gabrielle Long helped plan the murder of her grandfather.

Others accused in the murder are her boyfriend Christopher Brian Cortez, Devin Cunningham, and Mercedes Lin Hall.

Prosecutors say Cunningham beat Monka with a golf club and Cortez stabbed him in the neck. Detectives say the motive was robbery. They stole $30,000 in cash from a safe in Monka’s house and then went on a shopping spree.
Also in the courtroom today are family and friends of Monka. Many of them are wearing T-Shirts with his picture and the words justice for Joe. We will have much more on this story throughout the day on Eyewitness News.  

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