Prosecutors: Sean Kratz spared the death penalty in grisly slayings on Pennsylvania farm
PHILADELPHIA — In a surprise move Monday, Bucks County prosecutors decided not to pursue the death penalty against Sean Kratz in the violent murders of three young men on a remote Solebury township farm.
Kratz will instead face a mandatory sentence of life in prison for his first-degree murder conviction in the death of Dean Finocchiaro, 22. In the other slayings, First Assistant District Attorney Gregg Shore sought consecutive sentences, and Bucks County Court Judge Jeffrey L. Finley added a total of 18 to 36 years on the remaining counts.
Before the judge issued his decision, relatives of the victims tearfully testified, calling Kratz a monster, expressing hope that he would be attacked in prison and saying he did everything he could to avoid responsibility for his actions.
Kratz, 22, was convicted of first-degree murder and other charges in the death of Finocchiaro in July 2017. He was also found guilty of voluntary manslaughter in the slayings of two other men, Thomas Meo, 21, and Mark Sturgis, 19, who were shot and killed by Kratz’s cousin, Cosmo DiNardo. And he was convicted of abuse of corpse in all three slayings, along with robbery, conspiracy and weapons charges.
On November 15, 2019 Sean Kratz was found guilty of first degree murder and related charges by a Bucks County jury and sentenced to life in prison he n November 18, 2019 pic.twitter.com/oVezd5tC5v
— Solebury Police (@soleburypolice) November 18, 2019
DiNardo lured the three men to his family’s secluded farm under the guise of a drug deal, then, with Kratz’s help, robbed and killed them and buried them in a 12-foot hole. Earlier, DiNardo killed a fourth man, 19-year-old Jimi Patrick. He is serving four life sentences in state prison for his crimes.
Kratz and his cousin made international headlines in the slayings, which came to light after a dayslong search that began when the young men went missing in July 2017. Their families kept a tense vigil at the farm while investigators searched for the men in a hunt that gripped the region and beyond before ending with the grisly discovery of the bodies.
Convicted killer Sean Kratz sentenced to life without parole. pic.twitter.com/aCua408qQS
— Walter Perez (@WalterPerez6abc) November 18, 2019
The crime, authorities said, was one of the worst in Bucks County history. Detectives found the corpses soaked in gasoline and partially singed because after the shootings, DiNardo had unsucessfully tried to burn them in a pig roaster, which he then buried with them in his family’s remote farm.