A Plymouth man who accused his wife of cheating on him bludgeoned her with a fireplace poker and stabbed her repeatedly with a knife before stashing the body in the basement for two days, according to police.
Daniel Barrett, 40, is charged with an open count of criminal homicide alleging he murdered his wife Mary Susan Barrett in the family home at 103 Gaylord Ave. on Saturday. Police say the crime was discovered when an emotional Daniel Barrett showed up at police headquarters and confessed Monday evening.
According to their Facebook profiles, the couple had been married since May 2015. Mary Barrett was a veteran of the U.S. Air Force who retired in 2014, her profile says.
According to the complaint, Daniel Barrett, who believed his wife was cheating on him, got into an argument with her near the fireplace of their home on Saturday.
Mary Barrett admitted “spending time” with another man, and Daniel Barrett punched her in the face, knocking her to the ground face-down, according to the complaint.
During questioning, Daniel Barrett claimed he blacked out and that the next thing he knew he was standing over his wife wielding fire tongs over his head, police said. After realizing he was holding the tongs, Daniel Barrett hit her again, the complaint alleges.
The charges allege that Daniel Barrett also hit his wife repeatedly with a fire poker, which at one point “became entangled” with her body.
At that point, Daniel Barrett grabbed a knife and stabbed his wife repeatedly in the lower back, according to police.
When it was over, Daniel Barrett went to wash his face. As he did so, he heard Mary Barrett make a noise, so he decided to move her body downstairs, police said.
Daniel Barrett dragged his wife’s body down the basement stairs and hid it in a room without a window, according to the complaint. That night, Daniel Barrett slept on a couch upstairs, police said.
On Sunday, Daniel Barrett covered Mary Barrett’s body with a sheet, the complaint says. He also considered going on the run or killing himself, and searched online for attorneys and how to commit suicide, according to police.
Around 6:20 a.m. Sunday, Robert Atkinson, the father of Mary Barrett’s teenage child, received a text message from her phone — which police say Daniel Barrett wrote — saying the family dog was dying and had to be euthanized, according to the complaint.
Police say Daniel Barrett buried his dog Sunday, and interacted with neighbors who asked about the dog on Facebook. It was not immediately clear from the charges how the dog died.
Atkinson told police that Daniel Barrett then called him around 5 p.m. Monday saying Mary Barrett had cheated on him and that he killed her, according to the complaint.
Ten minutes later, an emotional Daniel Barrett showed up at Plymouth Borough police headquarters and told officers he killed his wife, police said.
Investigators went to the darkened house and found a blood trail from the living room to the basement, where they found Mary Barrett lying on the floor covered in blood, with a hole in her skull and a fireplace poker next to her body.
Police charged Daniel Barrett with a single count of criminal homicide.
Magisterial District Judge Donald L. Whittaker arraigned Daniel Barrett on the charge and denied bail.
Daniel Barrett was being held without bail at the Luzerne County Correctional Facility with a preliminary hearing set for Jan. 20.