NEW YORK - A retired New York high school librarian and a New Jersey auto mechanic have been convicted of scheming to carry out gruesome fantasies of kidnapping, raping, torturing and killing women and girls.
A federal jury in Manhattan delivered its verdict Friday in the conspiracy trial of ex-librarian Christopher Asch and Michael Van Hise.
Their convictions came after a police officer was found guilty last year of plotting abductions and cannibalism.
That investigation also led to the prosecutions of Asch and Van Hise. Prosecutors said the two planned to victimize members of Van Hise's family, including girls under 10.
Like the officer, Asch and Van Hise said they were only role-playing and would never have actually hurt anyone.
But prosecutors said the two crossed a line between pretending and plotting.