Charge upgraded to murder in deadly spring stabbing - WBTV 3 News, Weather, Sports, and Traffic for Charlotte, NC

Charge upgraded to murder in deadly spring stabbing

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Richard Earl Barnes (Source: Lexington County Detention Center) Richard Earl Barnes (Source: Lexington County Detention Center)
Worth Edward Cook, III (Source: Lexington County Detention Center) Worth Edward Cook, III (Source: Lexington County Detention Center)
LEXINGTON, SC (WIS) -

A murder charge has been filed against a man previously charged with disposing of the body of a Lexington man who was killed earlier this year.

Murder warrants were served on 41-year-old Richard Earl Barnes of West Columbia while he awaits a trial at the Lexington County Jail.  Barnes was previously charged with being an accessory after the fact to murder, manufacturing methamphetamine and possession of marijuana.

Arrest warrants say some time between March 9 and April 18, Barnes and 27-year-old Worth Edward Cook, III killed 54 year old David Johnathan Diblasi by stabbing him several times at Cook's Leesvile home. Diblasi was reported missing on March 9 by his mother, with whom he lived. She reported seeing him the last time on February 25 with Barnes and Cook.

Barnes and Cook were arrested in April after detectives found Diblasi's body buried in the back yard of Cook's home.

Lexington County Sheriff James Metts said investigators received a warrant for Barnes' arrest Friday after witnesses said he participated in the fatal stabbing. He was being held on $505,000 on the previous charges.

Cook is being held without bond on charges of murder, financial transaction card fraud, obtaining property under false pretenses and violating probation. 

Metts said after the murder, Cook and Barnes cut up Diblasi's pickup truck and sold the parts for scrap metal at a Batesburg metal recycling company.

A date has not been set for a bond hearing.

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