A North Carolina couple was arrested by police while trying to bury a body behind an abandoned house. They have both been charged with murder.
Toni Hearne, 51, and Linsey Lentz, 33, were caught trying to dispose of the body of Hearne's uncle, Robert Adam Hearne, Jr., in a field behind an abandoned house in Ellendale, North Carolina, on March 9, according to WSOC.
The couple's car reportedly got stuck behind the house before they could drive away, and a passerby spotted them and called police.
When officers arrived, they reportedly saw drag marks in the leaves and followed the trail to the body, which was hidden under leaves, wood and some tires.
When questioned by police, Hearne, who is from Charlotte, North Carolina, explained he had gotten into a fight with his uncle and choked him to death in self-defense.
"I never wanted to fight my uncle but he came in and came at me with his knife," Hearne told WSOC. "So we were fighting and I tried to defend myself. He was choking me and I was choking him."
Hearne and Lentz, who is from Albemarle, North Carolina, have both been charged with first-degree murder and failure to report a death, according to WCNC.
Police believe the alleged murder occurred at a home in Albemarle and that both suspects transported the body from the home to the dump site.
Both Hearne and Lentz were denied bail in Alexander County Court on March 10.
When asked in court whether Lentz was involved in killing his uncle, Hearne reportedly shook his head "no," according to WSOC.