Sean Kratz found guilty of murder, manslaughter in Bucks County farm slayings
DOYLESTOWN, Pa. - A jury has found Sean Kratz guilty of criminal homicide and manslaughter in the deaths of three of the four men killed on a Bucks County farm in 2017.
Kratz was found guilty of murder in the first degree in the death of Dean Finocchiaro. He was also found guilty of voluntary manslaughter in the slayings of Tom Meo and Mark Sturgis.
The penalty phase of the trial will resume Monday at 9 a.m.
Kratz is accused of helping his cousin kill four young men and bury them on a Bucks County farm two years ago.
Kratz’s lawyers rested their case Tuesday without calling the 22-year-old defendant to the stand.
Parents of two of the four victims previously took the stand, crying while they viewed pictures of their late sons.
Kratz last year turned down a plea deal that would have helped him avoid a possible death penalty. His cousin, Cosmo DiNardo, 22, pleaded guilty and is serving life in prison for his role in the quadruple murder.
Those killed were 19-year-old Dean Finocchiaro, 22-year-old Mark Sturgis, 21-year-old Tom Meo and 19-year-old Jimi Tar Patrick. Kratz faces criminal homicide charges in the deaths of Finnocchiaro, Sturgis and Meo.
Kratz's attorney said last week that his client was being "preyed upon by a psychopath."
Bucks County prosecutors alleged that Dinardo lured the four victims, ages 19 to 22, to his family's Solebury farm under the guise of making marijuana deals. They were found after a five-day search in 2017, three of them set afire and placed 12 feet deep in an oil tank converted into a pig roaster.
Assistant District Attorney Kate Kohler told jurors that Kratz killed one of the victims and helped while Dinardo killed two others, then helped clean and cover up the evidence. Kohler said the two were "on a mission to kill, rob, burn and bury bodies."
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Kratz's attorney, A. Charles Peruto Jr., said Dinardo threatened to kill his client and his family if he didn't cooperate. He said DiNardo was the "lunatic," not his client, who he said was "somebody preyed upon by a psychopath."
Kohler, however, said there were multiple times Kratz could have called for help or even turned the gun on DiNardo. She called the slayings "just something fun to do that day because they could."
Peruto said his client was later manipulated into giving a recorded confession that was played in court. Kratz declined to testify.
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The Associated Press contributed to this report.