A Cleveland woman has married her brother’s convicted murderer, but maintains her new husband’s innocence.
According to ABC-affiliate WEWS-TV, Crystal Straus became Crystal Tiedjen over the weekend after tying the knot with John Tiedjen, a 57-year-old man who was found guilty in the 1987 death of Brian McGary. John reportedly spent 32 years behind bars before a judge threw out his murder conviction back in June, after his defense attorney provided new evidence that suggested McGary killed himself.
The Cleveland man was released on bond last month and remains on house arrest as he awaits a retrial. But before he heads back to court, he and Crystal held a small wedding ceremony officiated by John’s attorney, Kimberly Kendall Corral.
“With all my heart I love her, there is nobody else I think about, and I want to be with her my whole life,” Tiedjen told the network, explaining Crystal had sent a letter to him prior to his release. “And I wrote her a letter back and I said I didn’t do it, take a look at this stuff. I believe in God too, and I know things about it, but I didn’t do it. I had no powder burns, no gunshot residue, no blood, no cuts, no scrapes, nothing on my person or me or my clothing.”
Crystal said she became convinced of John’s innocence several years ago and had offered her forgiveness in a 2016 letter. She said she became even more convinced during the COVID-19 lockdowns, when she began analyzing and reviewing the case details.
“I love him, obviously. If I didn’t love him, I would not be sitting here with him ...” she said. “We’ll get through this, it’s going to be challenging, there’s no doubt about it.”