Family of Lancaster County man who was brutally attacked and killed by a neighbor speaks out

EAST LAMPETER TOWNSHIP, LANCASTER COUNTY, Pa. -- It’s been a difficult last twenty four hours for the family of 68-year-old Michael Varley of East Lampeter Township.

Police say Varley was attacked and killed Monday night, right outside of his Hedgewood Avenue home by his neighbor, 31-year-old Jonathan Herr, who had just moved in down the street three weeks prior.

“He had a brick in his hand and a pot in the other hand," Benuel King, Varley's brother-in-law, who witnessed the attack.

Benuel King, who is Varley’s brother-in-law lives in between Herr and Varley’s home.

He says around 6:00 p.m. Monday evening, he saw Herr go to Varley’s door and smash his window in, prompting Varley to come outside.

That's when he says Herr suddenly and began to beat Varley with a brick, pot and pan and wooden stool multiple times, in the back of the head.

“It was scary because I was trying to help Mike and I couldn’t do nothing," said King.

King says he grabbed a broom, hitting Herr to get him off of Varley.

"It didn’t phase him he just turned around and when he turned around, his eyes were evil, they were absolutely evil, his whole face," said King.

According to police, Varley was also stabbed.

He was taken to Lancaster General Hospital where he was later pronounced dead.

“He said my neighbor is looney tunes and that this guy obviously needed help, he was trying to help him," said Lisa Zimmerman, Michael Varley's niece.

“He was a nice guy, always tried to make you laugh, always telling jokes," added Zimmerman.

“What do you do a in a situation like that,?" said King.

“As far as I’m concerned, tomorrow they can put him in the electric chair and that would’t phase me a eye for an eye…tooth for a tooth," he added.

Police say they aren’t quite sure what led to to the attack since the two had no prior relationship.

They tell FOX43 they are still investigating the matter and are also looking to see if the influence of drugs was a contributing factor, however they cannot confirm that at this point.

Herr faces a wide range of charges including homicide and burglary.

He is currently being held at Lancaster County Prison.

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