Eli Hormann, 24 (18 Jun 98)
Belmont Citizen Herald, June 18, 1998
Eli Hormann, 24, a bicycle messenger in New York City, died Thursday, June 11, 1998, at the Cranberry Specialty Hospital in Middleboro from injuries sustained in an assault in New York in March.
Born in Boston, he graduated from Belmont Day School in 1985.
He is survived by his mother, Elizabeth (Young) Hormann; four
sisters, Katherina Pittman, Madeleine Hormann, Irene Hadwin and
Karin von Herrlich; a brother, Charles; a longtime partner, Corinne
Rhodes; an aunt, uncle and several cousins.
A funeral service was held on Tuesday, June 16, 1998, at the Parish of the Messiah, Auburndale, with interment at St. Mary's Cemetery, Needham.
Memorial donations may be made to Habitat for Humanity, 455
The Arborway, Jamaica Plain, MA 02130.
Eli's killer guilty of manslaughter (26 Nov 00)
Man Guilty of Manslaughter at B'klyn Circus
Newsday, July 1, 2000
It began as a typical night at Williamsburg's Bindlestiff Family Cirkus: plenty of fire-eating, sword-swallowing and tightrope- walking. And anyone who dressed up as a clown got in for half price.
What the clowns didn't bargain for that night in March, 1998, was a violent clash between two circus-goers who were old rivals, Drew Feuer and Eli Hormann. By the time the men separated, one of them was mortally wounded and the circus was a bloody crime scene.
On Friday, a Brooklyn jury found Feuer, 26, guilty of manslaughter in the stabbing death of Hormann, 24. He faces a maximum of 12 1/2 to 25 years in prison. Sentencing will be July 13.
Prosecutors, who had sought a murder conviction, refused to comment. But Hormann's half-sister, Kaarin Von Herrlich, called the outcome of the two-week trial in State Supreme Court fair.
The defense tried to portray Hormann "as some kind of monster," she said. "The jury did not believe that ... He wasn't a violent person by nature."
Feuer, meanwhile, "is devastated by the verdict," said his attorney, Paul Callan.
Feuer had claimed self-defense in a case that shocked members of the underground scene in Williamsburg, where the Bindlestiff Family Cirkus - a traveling band of offbeat sideshow performers - is based.
The bad blood between Hormann, a bicycle messenger originally from Boston, and Feuer dated to 1995. That's when Feuer and his girlfriend, Paige Stevenson, evicted Hormann and his girlfriend from Stevenson's loft.
On March 28, 1998, both couples attended a fund raiser at the Brooklyn Brewery featuring the circus. Feuer testified that he arrived to find Stevenson, dressed as a clown, being berated by Hormann.
Feuer - a dreadlocked, slightly built tugboat worker with tattoos and piercings covering much of his body - told the jury that when he intervened, the much bigger Hormann attacked, knocking him down with a flurry of blows and trying to smash his head on the ground. The defendant said he responded by pulling out a Leatherman, a knife- like seaman's tool.
"I thought he wanted to kill me," Feuer testified. "I reached and got out my Leatherman, and I used it." Hormann was stabbed three times in the chest and stomach. He lapsed into a coma within minutes.
One grand jury refused to charge Feuer with attempted murder. But when Hormann died on June 11, 1998, a second grand jury voted to indict him on murder charges.
Feuer's attorney said he would argue on appeal that the district attorney acted improperly by presenting the case to a grand jury twice.