Jury convicts New Jersey man of strangling former high school classmate

FREEHOLD, N.J. (AP) - A jury has convicted a New Jersey man of strangling a former high school classmate and throwing her body off a bridge.

The panel reached its verdict Tuesday afternoon, a day after deliberations began in the trial of Liam McAtasney.

McAtasney was convicted of murder, robbery and other counts including desecration of human remains. He faces life in prison when he's sentenced in May.

Jurors had asked to review a secretly recorded conversation in which McAtasney talked about Sarah Stern's death.

Monmouth County prosecutors alleged that McAtasney killed the 19-year-old Stern during a December 2016 robbery.

Defense attorney Carlos Diaz-Cobo called the secretly recorded conversation an elaborate lie McAtasney told to impress the amateur horror filmmaker with whom he was conversing.