Man accused of killing house guest, hiding body in planter

Posted: Updated:
NEWBURGH -

An Orange County man has been indicted for murder, accused of killing his house guest and then hiding the body in a planter.

Authorities say Chris Smith fatally stabbed his friend last spring and literally covered it up for months with dirt. The body was recovered two weeks ago in a planter on the property.

Authorities say the 43-year-old stabbed his friend and house guest, 50-year-old William McMahon, in April at this home on Quaker Avenue in the Town of Newburgh.

For months, McMahon's whereabouts were a mystery. Neighbors say they used to see both men working outside on the property all the time, but by summer that stopped. Soon after, police started asking questions.

Neighbors say the men were renovating the home and grounds, which authorities say Smith rented.

Police first started looking for McMahon in June, two months after they allege Smith fatally stabbed him and hid the body. Authorities recently got a search warrant.

Smith faces a number of charges, including second-degree murder and manslaughter. He is being held in the Orange County Jail on $500,000 bail.

Smith is due back in court later this month.

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