Maryland Court of Appeals to hear case of Bethesda man convicted of tunnel digger’s death


MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Md. (WDVM) — In September 2017 Daniel Beckwitt was charged with the death of a tunnel digger, and now Maryland’s highest court is hearing the case to appeal the Court of Special Appeals’ prior ruling.

Silver Spring man Akia Khafra is the victim who died in a nuclear bunker fire while digging tunnels in Beckwitt’s Bethesda home. Beckwitt’s murder conviction has already been overturned through an appeal but the manslaughter conviction due to insufficient evidence to determine the death was not an accident– was upheld.

Beckwitt’s attorney, Megan E. Coleman Esq. says the court will consider issues such as if there was enough evidence and there are different possibilities as to how the court could rule.

Coleman said, “The state always agreed that the fire started by accident and so all of that kind of wrapped up into one of the issues that had to do with whether a conviction could have even been entered.”

Oral arguments are set to begin in November. 

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