Killer dodges death penalty for gruesome quadruple murder on Bucks farm

Lester Mason
May 17, 2018

The man accused of killing four men and burying them on his Bucks County farm has admitted to the crimes.

Attorneys for DiNardo's cousin and codefendant, Sean Kratz, 21, said earlier Wednesday they expected their client to plead guilty to third-degree murder in a deal that would land him in prison from 59 to 118 years.

Cosmo DiNardo, 21, of Bensalem, entered a guilty plea Wednesday morning at a scheduled "miscellaneous hearing" before Bucks County President Judge Jeffrey L. Finley, admitting to the July 5 slaying of 19-year-old Jimi Taro Patrick, of Newtown, as well as the July 7 killings of Dean Finnochiaro, 19, of Middletown, Thomas Meo, 21, of Plumstead, and Mark Sturgis, 22, of Pennsburg. The prosecutor struck a deal with DiNardo not to seek the death penalty, contingent on his admission of guilt and full cooperation, including directing investigators to the location of Patrick's body, which was still missing at the time. DiNardo's guilty plea, which will put him behind bars for life, gave solace to a grieving father who turned to the stone-faced killer in a packed courtroom and said, "Your only way out of prison is wearing a toe tag". His lawyer said he did so to avoid the death penalty.

In court, Dinardo issued an apology to the families of the victims. He had a schizophrenia diagnosis and repeated contacts with police, but lawyer Fortunato Perri said mental health professionals who evaluated DiNardo after his arrest weren't sure they could present an insanity defense.

Police found the men after a five-day search.

DiNardo and Kratz both tied the killings a year ago to three separate drug deals gone bad. Sturgis, Meo and Finocchiaro were lit on fire and placed 12-feet (3-meters) deep in an oil tank converted into a cooker DiNardo called the "pig roaster".


Patrick's grandparents, who raised him since birth, asked DiNardo to pray for them and for his mother, who they say is mentally ill, so that someday they might be able to forgive him. "My heart is broken, and I will never, ever be the same", she said.

"I just want the poor families to know, I am so sorry", DiNardo, 21, said in the Bucks County Court of Common Pleas. "I can not come to terms with what occurred".

Months before the murder spree, police had brought a weapons charge against DiNardo for possession of a shotgun and ammunition that he was barred from owning because he had been involuntarily committed to an inpatient treatment facility for a mental illness.

"To you, human lives are disposable", Finley told DiNardo.

In his confession, DiNardo acknowledged selling handguns to local residents.

The Pennsylvania man who killed four young men and then buried their corpses on his parents' rural property last July was sentenced to four life sentences on Wednesday.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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