Jury Retraces Harmony Montgomery’s Last Ride, Father Admits Abusing Her Corpse

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Police photo

Harmony Montgomery at age 5.

Adam Montgomery enters the courtroom for jury selection ahead of his murder trial at Hillsborough County Superior Court in Manchester, N.H, on Tuesday. He is accused of killing his five-year-old daughter, Harmony. David Lane/UNION LEADER POOL

Editor’s Note: Details in this story about Harmony’s death are disturbing to read.


The final car ride Harmony Montgomery ever took, a trip through Manchester as her father allegedly beat her to death, is central to the trial in the little girl’s murder.

Before opening arguments take place in Hillsborough Superior Court North in Manchester, jurors selected to decide Adam Montgomery’s fate went on a trip through the city Wednesday to see the locations where Harmony’s short life ended, where her body was hidden, and where she was eventually thrown away.

“In some ways it is going to be the beginning of a journey you may never forget, and it’s also the last journey Harmony ever took,” Senior Assistant Attorney General Benjamin Agati told the jurors. 

Harmony was reported missing in late 2021 by her mother, Crystal Sorey, who had not seen the little girl in more than a year. But by then she was already dead, allegedly killed by her father in 2019 when she was five years old. Adam Montgomery is on trial for second-degree murder, abuse of a corpse, falsifying physical evidence, assault, and witness tampering. 

The trial started Monday with jury selection, which finished up late Tuesday morning. Opening arguments are set for Thursday morning during which Adam Montgomery’s team will acknowledge he abused the corpse of his daughter and falsified evidence. 

Adam Montgomery was not in court Wednesday, having waived his right to appear. It’s not certain yet if he will agree to be in court Thursday. 

Adam Montgomery and his wife, Kayla Montgomery, were living in a Chrysler Sebring in late 2019 after they were evicted from their apartment. The family included the two adults, Harmony, and her two young step-brothers. 

On the day Harmony was killed, Dec. 7, 2019, Adam and Kayla Montgomery drove the family to a Manchester methadone clinic, according to Agati. After getting out of the clinic, Adam Montgomery learned Harmony had an accident in the car and had urinated, according to court records.

As he had allegedly done before, Adam Montgomery became angry and beat the little girl. He punched her in the face three to four times with his fist, Kayla Montgomery would tell investigators. After the last blow he said something was different.

“I think I really hurt her this time, I think I did something,” he reportedly said. 

The girl moaned for about five minutes and then went silent, according to a police affidavit. Neither Adam nor Kayla Montgomery checked on her or tended to her obvious injury for several hours that day.

Later that day, the Sebring died, and it is at that point Adam and Kayla Montgomery checked on the girl, learning she was dead, according to the police affidavit. That’s when Adam Montgomery took the gruesome step to hide the body, according to police.

Adam Montgomery put his daughter’s lifeless body into a duffle bag, and the family changed cars, according to police. Adam Montgomery put Harmony’s bag into the trunk of the new car the family lived in. At times, he would put the bag into the snow to slow the decomposition.

Throughout their homelessness, both Montgomerys were using crack and fentanyl, according to the affidavit. 

Over the next several months, Harmony’s body was moved and hidden in various places around Manchester. First at Kayla Montgomery’s mother’s apartment when the family stayed there a short time. Harmony’s duffle bag was allegedly kept in a cooler.

The family next moved to the Families in Transition shelter in Manchester, and Harmony’s bag, now oozing, was hidden in the ceiling. Adam Montgomery had put the duffle bag inside a garbage bag to stop the liquid from seeping.

After another resident complained about the smell, Adam Montgomery wrapped the duffle bag in another garbage bag and hid the child’s remains in a closet.

Adam Montgomery then decided to remove his daughter from the duffle bag and placed her into a maternity bag from Catholic Medical Center.

Kayla Montgomery testified smelling the body while Adam Montgomery took the bags into the shelter’s bathroom and made the switch. She could see steam coming out as Adam Montgomery worked to clean up after.

Adam Montgomery then kept his daughter’s remains in the freezer at the Portland Pie Pizza restaurant on Elm Street where he worked. 

The family eventually moved into an apartment on Union Street and brought Harmony’s body with them. Adam and Kayla Montgomery allegedly abused Harmony’s corpse when Adam Montgomery decided to add lime to the bag to speed decomposition. They “squished” her body in and out of the bag, adding lime. Kayla Montgomery told detectives Harmony still had her skin and facial features. After months, she was still Harmony.

Kayla Montgomery helped Adam Montgomery, cutting the child’s clothes off the frozen, decomposed body. She told police she later heard loud “bangs” as Adam Montgomery stuffed the girl and the lime back into the bag. Now zipped up, Harmony was put into the apartment freezer.

In the spring of 2020, knowing police were searching for the girl, Adam Montgomery rented a U-Haul truck and made several trips to Massachusetts with the maternity bag, allegedly throwing his daughter away in pieces.

Harmony’s body has never been found.

Caroline Smith, Adam Montgomery’s attorney, told jurors before they toured the locations mentioned in the case Wednesday the version of Harmony’s death presented by police and prosecutors is under dispute.

Adam Montgomery is likely to cast blame on Kayla Montgomery as part of his defense. Kayla Montgomery agreed to testify against her husband as part of a plea agreement in a perjury case related to Harmony’s death.

Damien Fisher is a veteran New Hampshire reporter who lives in the Monadnock region with his wife, writer Simcha Fisher, their many children, as well as their dog, cat, parakeet, ducks, and seamonkeys. 

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