Former gym owner beat his neighbor to death with a baseball bat and set her house on fire over a fence dispute

Pavel Samsinak hit Hale after an argument over a fence.

Photo: Michael B. Thomas/Getty Images

A man beat his neighbor to death and burned down her houseall over an argument over a fence.

Pavel Samsinak, 48, was convicted Friday of murdering his neighbor Alice Hale, 66, after a dispute over a fence he was building between his house and a vacant lot in Springfield, Missouri.

According to court documents, after an argument over which side of the property line the fence was built on, Samsinak beat Hale to death with a baseball bat in September 2020.

Samsinak, owner of a now-closed personal training gym called Czech Us Out, then set fire to Hale’s house with his body inside to destroy evidence and watched the house burn from a nearby store parking lot, according to testimony in the judgment.

When first responders arrived at the house fire, they located Hale’s body, but found the circumstances surrounding his death suspicious.

During the death investigation, Samsinak was identified as a homicide suspect.

According to the Green County District Attorney’s office, evidence shown to the jury at the murder trial included testimony from other neighbors who placed Samsinak at the crime scene arguing with Hale.

The jury was also presented with surveillance video from the convenience store, as well as evidence from Samsinak’s cell phone and evidence of Hale’s blood found on the driver’s seat belt in his truck.

The jury deliberated for 45 minutes before finding the Springfield man guilty of all four charged crimes: second-degree murder, armed criminal action, second-degree arson and tampering with physical evidence.

Judge Becky Borthwick has set a sentencing hearing for May 11, where Samsinak will also receive a sentencing evaluation report from the Department of Probation and Parole.

Samsinak, who is a native of the Czech Republic according to his Facebook, could face life in prison for second-degree murder.

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Former gym owner beat his neighbor to death with a baseball bat and set her house on fire over a fence dispute