Cousins charged with abuse of corpse, homicide in Pennsylvania murders




 

Two cousins charged in the brutal murder of four men in Pennsylvania in July pleaded not guilty at their arraignment hearing Thursday.

Cosmo DiNardo, 20, is charged in four deaths and his cousin, Sean Kratz, 20, has been charged in three. Both pleaded guilty to multiple charges of criminal homicide, abuse of corpse, robbery and conspiracy in the fatal shootings of Dean Finocchiaro, 19, Mark Sturgis, 22, Tom Meo, 21, and Jimi Patrick, 19, whose bodies were discovered buried on a farm in Solebury, Pennsylvania, in July.

DiNardo reportedly admitted to killing the four missing men in July as part of a plea deal and told investigators where the bodies could be found. In exchange for DiNardo's cooperation, prosecutors took the death penalty off the table. His cousin did not agree to a plea deal, however.

RELATED: Investigation into the four missing Pennsylvania men

According to WPVI, DiNardo's not guilty plea earlier this week was a procedural decision that would allow him the opportunity to maintain his innocence by affording him the option to stop cooperating with the investigation. However, WPVI has confirmed DiNardo is still cooperating with police.

Bucks County District Attorney Matthew D. Weintraub also filed paperwork this week that would essentially allow them to pursue the death penalty against the two men if they are convicted, Fox 29 reported. However, the district attorney's office told the local station that the filing would not interfere to DiNardo's plea deal, assuming he pleaded guilty, and was completely normal.

"We made an agreement with Cosmo DiNardo," Bucks County District Attorney Matthew Weintraub told the outlet. "We're the district attorney's office: We honor our agreements. So should Mr. DiNardo decide to uphold his end of the bargain, we will not seek the death penalty against him."

SEE ALSO: Cosmo DiNardo who confessed to killing four men now says he's killed before

"DiNardo is the admitted killer," Weintraub continued. "We look forward to challenging the evidence and the aggravators at the appropriate time."

Local authorities say Kratz has been giving conflicting narratives surrounding the killings but also said DiNardo was responsible for the deaths, CBS reported.

DiNardo reportedly told police he crushed he attempted to set three of the bodies on fire before burying them and crushed one of the victims with a backhoe after shooting him, according to the outlet.

An attorney for the Finocchiaro family said: "The day of reckoning is coming ... and the family looks forward to that day," ABC News reported.

When DiNardo asked if he had anything to say about the deaths, he replied, "I'm sorry."

Dinardo and Kratz's trial date has not yet been confirmed.

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