Unusual relationship: Albrecht Gero Muth, pictured, is said to have got married for convenience
The young husband of a 91-year-old socialite who was found slain in her Washington home has been charged with her murder.
Albrecht Gero Muth, who is 44 years her junior, was seized by police on Tuesday evening after details emerged about their violent marriage of convenience.
Viola Drath obtained a string of orders against Muth after he once allegedly attacked her with a chair and held her captive in her own house.
Muth, 47, is also said to have sat on her during the disturbing incident in which he 'pounded her head into the floor' several times.
Miss Drath was found unconscious in the bathroom of her well-maintained rowhouse in the Georgetown neighbourhood of Washington D.C. on Friday.
She was pronounced dead hours later but despite initial reports she died of natural causes, a medical examiner has now ruled that the case is a homicide.
Police sources suggest Miss Drath died of strangulation and blunt force injuries.
Killed: Miss Drath was found unconscious in the bathroom of her home in the Georgetown, Washington D.C. on Friday
Muth was arrested last night in Georgetown just before 8pm, walking a few blocks from where his wife's body was found.
He has since been charged with second-degree murder, suggesting police do not believe the alleged murder would have been premeditated.
Muth was charged after failing to provide an alibi. There was also no sign of forced entry into their home.
He apparently got in touch with one of Miss Drath's relatives on the day she died saying they had an agreement that he would inherit tens of thousands of dollars when she died, the Washington Post reported.
The case has shone a light onto the unusual relationship between Muth and Miss Drath - they married 21 years ago when he was in his mid 20s and she was around 70.
Husband: Albrecht Muth was arrested in connection with the murder of his far older wife, Washington socialite Viola Crath, 91
Last year: Viola Drath, right, at Arlington National Cemetery with Muth last April
The Post reported that they both understood it was a 'marriage of convenience' with 'clear terms'.
But court documents unearthed by the paper show that even in 1992, early on in the marriage, Miss Drath requested a protective order against him.
She put in a similar request in 2002 after another alleged fight which caused Muth to move out and into a house he shared with a gay lover, Donald Davis.
That relationship soured and Muth moved back in with Miss Drath after he allegedly told Mr Davis 'he was going to have me [Mr Davis] killed and said I should be careful when I get into my car'.
Socialite: Viola Drath, 91, was found dead in in her Georgetown home on Friday
In custody: They married when Muth was in his 20s and Miss Drath was about 70
The incident with the chair is said to have happened in 2006, records from the Washington Superior Court show.
According to an arrest warrant affidavit Muth 'threw the Complainant [Drath] off the sofa onto the floor and pounded her head into the floor several times and sat on her for between five and ten minutes while yelling at her.
'When the Defendant [Muth] got off the Complainant (Drath), he refused to let her leave the house to notify the authorities.'
The matter went to court but was not prosecuted because Miss Drath did not want to pursue it.
Miss Drath led an extraordinary life by anybody's standards.
Home: The death was initially believed to be the result of a fall, but after police reviewed her autopsy results, it became a homicide investigation
Born in Germany in 1920 she later moved to the U.S. after marrying and Colonel Francis S Drath, a military governor in part of Bavaria after World War II.
They couple moved to Nebraska where he became a literature professor and she earned a masters degree in philosophy and Germanic literature.
In 1968 they moved to Washington where she worked as a journalist and college instructor.
She also wrote a number of books and became a fixture on the East coast social scene by hosting dinner parties with celebrated guests.
Neighbours have said that Muth, who is originally from Germany but uses the name Sheikh Ali Al-Muthaba, often dresses strangely and has been seen in military clothing.
He also claims to be a brigadier in the Iraqi Army and likes to walk about carrying a marching baton whilst smoking a cigar.
In e-mails he forwarded on to the Washington Post, Muth claims that he was in the home he shared with his wife from 9.45pm on Thursday until he found his wife's body, save for two brief trips out.
He also claimed that she 'sustained a head injury from a fall' but listed the date she died as August 11 in an obituary submission, one day before he claimed to have found her body.
Washington assistant police chief Peter Newsham told the Washington Post that no arrests are 'imminent'.