DOYLESTOWN Pa. (CN) – Filing two sets of homicide charges Friday in connection to the last week’s disappearances of four young men in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, police said their initial suspect has confessed to carrying out the gruesome murders with his cousin.
The identical complaints came roughly a day after investigators located the bodies of four men whose disappearances the week before rattled the community.
Mark Sturgis, 22, of Pennsburg; Tom Meo, 21, of Plumstead Township; and Dean Finocchiaro, 18, of Middletown Township, were all positively identified from a mass grave containing human remains that cadaver dogs uncovered on the 92-acre farm where DiNardo lives with his parents along Lower York Road in Solebury Township.
The remains of the fourth missing man, Jimi Tar Patrick, 19, of Newtown Township, were located Thursday at a second grave site half a mile away from the farm where DiNardo led police.
DiNardo and Kratz’s accounts of the murders are recounted in the complaints against them.
While DiNardo has confessed to killing Patrick as well as two of the men buried on his family farm, he says Finocchiaro was already dead when he shot him.
DiNardo says it was Kratz who killed Finocchiaro, with a Smith and Wesson 357 handgun that DiNardo provided.
Kratz has apparently admitted only to witnessing most of this, saying DiNardo carried out all of the killings singlehandedly, as well as torched the bodies, crushed them with a backhoe and buried them.
DiNardo and Kratz have both tied the murder spree to three separate drug deals gone bad, according to the complaint.
Patrick was the first victim, according to the complaint, which quotes DiNardo as saying he met with Patrick on July 5 to sell him 4 pounds of marijuana for $8,000.
Patrick arrived with only $800, and DiNardo has admitted that he acted alone in shooting and killing the man with a 22-caliber rifle and burying him in a 6-foot deep grave he dug with a backhoe.
While Kratz says Finocchiaro was also killed during what was supposed to be a marijuana deal on July 5, DiNardo says this murder occurred on July 7.
Either way, according to the complaints, DiNardo had arranged to sell marijuana to Meo on the same day of Finocchiaro’s murder.
Sturgis was killed because he had joined Meo for the deal. Both DiNardo and Kratz say Sturgis was killed after Meo, and that Meo was screaming.
DiNardo told police he drove the backhoe over Meo, then used the backhoe to put Sturgis and Meo’s bodies in a metal tank that already contained Finocchiaro.
He referred to it as a “pig roaster,” according to the complaint, which says DiNardo poured gasoline in the tank and lit it.
DiNardo told police that he and Kratz dug the grave for the three bodies with the backhoe on July 8.
Kratz says it was on July 7, also telling police that DiNardo first shot Meo with a handgun, then “finishes him off” with the rifle, and “basically crushes him” with the backhoe.
Bucks County District Attorney Matthew Weintraub said the “attempt to burn the bodies … was not successful.”
Authorities recovered both weapons Friday in Kratz’s Montgomery County home.
“Based on the evidence we have, we believe we have the two men locked up,” Weintraub said at a press conference.
If not for DiNardo’s confession, “we’d still be looking,” Weintraub added.
The DA had no answer for what drew a confession from Dinardo. “I don’t know what convinced him,” Weintraub said.
“I feel a lot of sadness,” the DA said of the case. “I feel relief. I feel so proud of my team. And I feel resolve.”
While the investigation has been underway this week, DiNardo was in and out of police custody, beginning with the refiling Monday of unrelated weapons charge.
A criminal complaint on these allegations from February 2017 says DiNardo possessed a shotgun and ammunition he was not permitted to have because he has a “mental illness” and had been involuntarily committed to an inpatient treatment facility.
DiNardo is said to have been diagnosed with schizophrenia.
After his father, Antonio DiNardo, posted 10 percent of his son’s $1 million bail on Tuesday, the young man was greeted with a new criminal complaint that charged him with stealing Meo’s 1996 Nissan Maxima, which he allegedly tried to sell for $500 over the weekend.
The July 12 complaint caused DiNardo’s bail to shoot up to $5 million. DiNardo was back in custody at the Bucks County Jail when the grave was found.