Man who set girlfriend’s body on fire admits to manslaughter

CHEEKTOWAGA, N.Y. (WIVB) — The man who lit his girlfriend’s body on fire after strangling her has admitted to first-degree manslaughter.

Officials charged Thomas Murphy, 59, with killing Jean Hartwig, 63, after he was found by police, standing in her smoke-filled apartment last year.

In April 2015, Cheektowaga police originally arrived at the scene to perform a welfare check, but no one answered when they got to the door.

Once they noticed smoke coming out from underneath the door, police went inside, where they found Murphy.

When it was determined that Hartwig was a homicide victim, Murphy was originally charged with murder.

He will be sentenced on the manslaughter charge on December 5. He could spend up to 25 years in jail. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review. Note: Comments containing links are not allowed.

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