A 23-year-old man was convicted Monday of beating to death and burying alive his 18-year-old friend in their hometown of Islip on the fourth anniversary of the murder.

A Suffolk County jury found Thomas Liming guilty of second-degree murder following a seven-week-long trial. The jury rejected the defense’s argument that Liming acted in self defense when he killed Kyle Underhill.

“The victim suffered a brutal death,” Suffolk County District Attorney Thomas Spota said. “He was struck in the head at least 19 times, according to the medical examiner’s office. He was choked, two sticks were rammed down his throat and then he was left to die in the muck of a swamp while he was still alive.”

Underhill’s body was found in a swamp in a wooded area on Brook Street two days after the murder on Nov. 16, 2011.

Judge Mark Cohen will sentence Liming on Dec. 14. He faces up to 25 years to life in prison.

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Timothy Bolger is the Editor in Chief of the Long Island Press who’s been working to uncover unreported stories since shortly after it launched in 2003. When he’s not editing, getting hassled by The Man or fielding cold calls to the newsroom, he covers crime, general interest and political news in addition to reporting longer, sometimes investigative features. He won’t be happy until everyone is as pissed off as he is about how screwed up Lawn Guyland is.