Marathon – A Marathon man has been charged with manslaughter for being instrumental in the death of a homeless man, whose body was found in a wooded area near 62nd Street January 20th.
45 year old Fredrick “Fritz” Berndt admitted to fighting with the victim, 41 year old Kenneth Anderson, the day before Anderson’s body was found. He told Detective Mark Coleman he hit Anderson with his elbow and Anderson fell to the ground. He said the fight took place near Dion’s convenience store. He said after the fight, Anderson fell, got up and then began staggering toward the wooded area. Berndt said he walked with the victim and helped him find a place to lie down. He said, “you found him in the woods, I know, I left him there.”
An autopsy showed Anderson died of blunt trauma to the head.
During the course of their investigation, detectives interviewed numerous people who saw the two together. Several witnesses said they saw Berndt hitting Anderson; one said she saw Berndt dragging Anderson on the ground. Two others said Berndt was talking about the fight and about Anderson’s death after the fact.
When he was charged with manslaughter, Berndt was already in jail, charged with grand theft. He was arrested on January 6th after a friend let him use his shower and then caught him stealing cash from a drawer in his bedroom.