REDWOOD CITY -- Jurors convicted a transient burglar Thursday of fatally beating an 88-year-old man in his Belmont home during a break in, the sole slaying in the city since 2003.

Tyler James Hutchinson's only reaction was to blink as the court clerk read aloud his convictions in the San Mateo County Superior Court of Judge Mark Forcum. He was surrounded by a dozen deputies.

Korn's wife, Gabriele, 71, of San Carlos arrived just after the first-degree murder as well as burglary verdicts were announced. She said outside court that the conviction is a relief but won't bring her husband of nearly 39 years back.

"Time does do some things," said the mother of two. "But it's always a void."

Deputy District Attorney Morris Maya told the seven-man and five-woman panel that Hutchinson busted into the Korn home on Hallmark Drive June 2, 2009, to burglarize it. But when the transient encountered Korn, who was home alone, he savagely beat him and then sped off in Korn's Jaguar.

Although conscious after the attack, which his adult son presumed was the result of a fall, Korn's condition quickly declined and never got better. His family took him off life support June 17, 2009.

Defense attorney James Thompson argued the fatal injury to Korn may have been the result of an accidental fall prior to the break-in. He presented neither an opening argument nor any witnesses.

Jurors said the mound of physical evidence presented by the prosecution guided them to their unanimous decision. Jury foreman Jim Tilton, 55, of San Mateo said the panel wasn't swayed by the defense theory Korn died due to a fall. He said the photo Maya projected before the panel showing Korn's swollen, bloody face left little doubt about what happened.

"There was no way any of that occurred in a fall," he said.

During his case, Maya showed jurors a bloody tank top bearing Hutchinson's DNA that was found in Korn's closet the day of the beating. He showed Hutchinson's fingerprints matched those found on the window ledge where the burglar broke into the Korn residence. The prosecutor also brought forth neighbors who testified to either seeing Hutchinson or someone who looked like him near the crime scene.

Hutchinson was arrested days after the Korn attack in Yolo County for a string of burglaries in West Sacramento. Investigators quickly linked him to the Peninsula case, though he was first tried and convicted of the Yolo County cases.

Korn's wife said the she's glad to have some closure and hopes it will protect others.

"After almost four years, it's good to have the result. Of course, it won't bring back a father and husband," she said. "I hope this will be able keep this kind of suffering from happening to any other families."

Contact Joshua Melvin at 650-348-4335. Follow him at Twitter.com/melvinreport.