Adam Montgomery Blames Wife in Harmony’s Death

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Jeffrey Hastings photo

Assistant New Hampshire Attorney General Christopher Knowles does opening arguments in the trial of Adam Montgomery. A photograph of Harmony Montgomery is displayed.

Editor’s Note: The details of Harmony Montgomery’s death are disturbing to read.


MANCHESTER – The only two people who know what happened to five-year-old Harmony Montgomery in December of 2019 are blaming each other for the little girl’s bleak fate, murdered and left dead and decomposing in a duffle bag for months.

Adam Montgomery, Harmony’s father, now admits he abused his little girl’s corpse when he stuffed her lifeless body in a bag, froze her, and eventually hacked her up and threw her away to cover up the death.

But his lawyers said Thursday at the opening of his murder trial he only took those grisly steps for his wife, Kayla Montgomery.

“Adam Montgomery did not kill Harmony. He did not beat Harmony in the head. Adam Montgomery did not cause Harmony’s death. Kayla Montgomery was the last person to see Harmony alive and knows how Harmony died,” said defense attorney Jamie Brooks.

Thursday was the first full day of Adam Montgomery’s murder trial in Hillsborough Superior Court — North in Manchester. Harmony’s body has never been found, and the information about exactly how she died comes from one person, Kayla Montgomery.

Kayla Montgomery, Hamony’s step-mother, is the state’s key witness. She is the only person to be with Adam Montgomery and Harmony when the little girl died. After initially lying to police and a grand jury about Harmony, Kayla Montgomery came forward with the details about Adam Montgomery beating the child to death in a fit of rage over a bathroom accident.

But Brooks told jurors Kayla Montgomery is a scheming liar who saw an opportunity to get out of her own legal trouble and harm her estranged husband at the same time.

“Only she knows the truth, and only she benefited from all the lies she had told,” Brooks said.

Assistant Attorney General Christopher Knowles painted a picture of Adam Montgomery as an abusive, violent, and unpredictable drug addict who only cares about himself. Knowles told jurors Kayla Montgomery feared for her life and was repeatedly assaulted by Adam Montgomery in the months after Kayla’s murder to keep her from telling the truth.

“He beat and terrorized Kayla Montgomery, the only witness, to keep her from telling police what he did,” Knowles said.

Knowles showed the jury a photo of Kayla Montgomery’s bruised and battered face after an alleged assault from Adam Montgomery. 

According to Knowles, Adam Montgomery beat his little girl, delivering fatal injuries, went to a Burger King drive through, parked his car, used the drugs he had on him, and then ate his food.

“He ate his food, and he did his drugs, and Harmony slowly died,” Knowles said.

Adam Montgomery hid Harmony’s body for months, bringing it from the Chrysler Sebring the evicted family made into a home, to a shelter, and finally to a new apartment. He even kept the body, now in a maternity tote bag given out to new mothers by Catholic Medical Center, in the freezer at his job at the Portland Pie Company pizza restaurant on Elm Street.

Adam Montgomery strived to hide any evidence that Harmony had died, Knowles said.

“He believed if there was no body then there would be no evidence of the horrible things he did to her, and he would get away with it,” Knowles said.

But Adam Montgomery’s cover up left evidence. His fingerprints and palm prints were left in Harmony’s blood that stained the ceiling tiles at the Families In Transition shelter where the family lived for a time, Knowles said. Adam Montgomery kept her body bag in the ceiling.

While there is some physical evidence, much of the case relies on Kayla Montgomery. Kayla Montgomery repeatedly lied about what happened until she got a deal with prosecutors, Brooks said. Kayla Montgomery ended up pleading guilty to perjury and served jail time as part of her deal with the state.

Thursday’s first witness was Crystal Sorey, Harmony’s mother who lost custody of her child due to her own drug addiction in 2014. Sorey reconnected with her daughter in 2016 and had regular contact until Adam Montgomery cut her out in the spring of 2019.

Sorey is the person who finally reported her daughter missing in 2020 after desperately trying to find her for months.

Jurors also heard from Adam Montgomery’s uncle, Kevin Montgomery, who called the Division for Children, Youth and Families in the summer of 2019. Kevin Montgomery found the child had a severe black eye, and Adam Montgomery allegedly admitted he beat her.

“I beat the dog shit out of her,” Adam Montgomery allegedly told his uncle.

A child protection worker with DCYF did go to the Montgomery home that summer, and reported seeing some bruising on Harmony’s face. However, the DCYF report found no evidence of abuse. 

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