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Woman in pizza bomber case to get nothing from father

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By Erie Times-news
Saturday, Feb. 22, 2014, 6:27 p.m.

Marjorie Diehl-Armstrong, sentenced to life plus 30 years in the pizza bomber case, will not get a large inheritance from her father while she is incarcerated.

Diehl-Armstrong's father, Harold Diehl, 95, died on Jan. 8, leaving behind a disputed will that bequeaths his only child $2,000. But even that money is gone.

Diehl-Armstrong has insisted she is due to inherit more from her father's estate, which was worth about $1.8 million until he gave much of it away to friends and neighbors in the years before his death.

Probate records filed last week, however, show that Diehl's estate is worth an estimated $118,000, and that the estate will be insolvent once Diehl's outstanding medical bills are paid from it.

By the time the estate is settled, “it is not going to distribute anything,” said Erie lawyer Sumner E. Nichols II, who represents an Erie couple who are the executors of Diehl's estate.

Her father's money, and allegations of Diehl-Armstrong's desire for it, emerged as underlying themes in the pizza bomber case, in which Diehl-Armstrong was convicted of being part of the plot that ended in the death of pizza deliveryman Brian Wells in Summit in 2003. He died when a bomb locked to his neck exploded after he robbed a bank.

The U.S. Attorney's Office in Erie, which prosecuted the case, alleged Diehl-Armstrong hoped to get money from the bank robbery to pay her co-defendant, Kenneth E. Barnes, to kill her father so she could inherit his fortune before he gave it away to friends, neighbors and other relatives.

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