2 People Found Burying Body in Alexander County

ALEXANDER COUNTY, N.C. – Two people have been arrested in connection with the murder of 71-year-old Robert Adam Hearne, Jr. of Albemarle.

The individuals were found in the Taylorsville area at 6045 Highway 64 West. The two suspects are Toni Anthony Hearne, 53, of Mecklenburg County, and Linsey Marie Lentz, 33, from Albemarle. The individuals in question have both been charged with first-degree murder. According to the Alexander County Sheriff’s Office, the victim is the uncle of Toni Hearne.

Deputies have performed a thorough searched of the surrounding area for any other possible suspects, but abandoned their search after a few hours. Currently, authorities are unsure of whether or not a third party is involved.

When questioned about his involvement, Toni Hearne said, “we brought him {Robert Hearne} up here. I just panicked to hide him. I didn’t know what to do.” Hearne plead self-defense, saying that “he choked his uncle Robert Hearne to death” because of a heated debate that ensued prior to the murder.

Hearne {Toni} said that he “never wanted to fight my uncle” but had no choice when he “came in and came at him with his knife.” He gave few details about where the fight occurred, but said that he had never been to the abandoned house before the incident.
Alexander County Sheriff Chris Bowman listed the events leading up to the arrest: “The officer found what appeared to be drag marks in the leaves and went to the end of it and found a black male deceased.” Authorities believe that Hearne and Lentz buried the body in the location hoping that no one would ever find it. 

The sheriff in Alexander Country said that they have been communicating with police in Charlotte and Albemarle to figure out potential sentences and more conclusive details about the crime.

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