Joseph Cedeno, 37, of Hazelton, is accused of stabbing and killing Dennis Doherty, 28, of Carbondale.
Police said the fatal stabbing of a Carbondale man over the weekend was the result of a robbery, but may also have been related to a prior incident.
Joseph Cedeno, 37, of 145 Broad St., Hazelton, is accused of stabbing and killing Dennis Doherty, 28, of 70 Belmont St. in a dirt lot at the intersection of Dundaff and Fallbrook streets just after 9 p.m. on Sunday night, Sept. 23.
According to court papers, the two men knew each other and had been drinking together prior to the incident. Sgt. Joseph Laguzzi filed the Carbondale police report after he was disptched to the crime scene along with Sgt. Brian Bognatz and Officer William Wolfe.
A witness who saw the attack, and called 911, told them that the suspect took a white garbage bag from the victim after stabbing him repeatedly. She stated that the suspect, who was wearing a jacket, then fled on foot up Fallbrook St. toward Hospital Street.
Doherty was transported by Cottage Hose Ambulance Co. to Mid Valley Hospital, where he later died.
According to Sgt. Laguzzi's report, the officers were still at the scene when they were approached by Michael Spinelli. He told them that it was his brother, Cedeno, who stabbed Doherty.
Spinelli stated that Doherty had gone to the home of their mother, Louise Lambides, 15 Hospital St. #3.
Police proceeded to the residence and found Cedeno there with the white bag, which contained beer and vodka. Investigators learned that prior to their arrival, he had been washing the bloody knife which he allegedly used to stab Doherty.
Cedeno was taken into custody and transported to police headquarters, where he refused to speak with investigators and invoked his right to legal counsel.
Police interviewed Lambides, who said her son admitted to "just killing a guy" after arriving at her residence with the white bag. She said he was wearing a light gray spring jacket, but changed his clothing before police arrived.
Cedeno's brothers, Spinelli and Jonathan Sandoval, both stated that he confessed the crime to them as well, and that he showed up at their mother's residence with the white bag containing the beer and vodka — which they had seen in Doherty's possession earlier that night.
Sandoval recounted an earlier conversation with his brother in which Cedeno asked him, "Should I kill him?"
"Kill who?" Sandoval asked.
"Dennis," Cedeno replied, speaking of Doherty.
Sandoval told him that doing so "would not bring our brother James back." Police are looking into whether the attack was related to a prior incident involving Doherty and Cedeno's family.
Spinelli related that Cedeno told him after the incident that he "caught a body," which Spinelli said is slang for killing someone.
Investigators cleared Lambides' residence and treated it as a crime scene. They requested a night search warrant to preserve vital evidence and prevent any destruction of evidence, as well as a warrant to enter the residence and process the scene along with the Pennsylvania State Police Forensic Services Unit.
Cedeno was arrested on charges of aggravated assault, simple assault, recklessly endangering another person, and robbery, and he was remanded to Lackawanna County Prison. He is expected to be charged with homicide once the autopsy is completed.
"The autopsy is taking place today [Monday]," Police Chief Jeffrey Taylor told the NEWS, "and then the charges will be amended."
In the meantime, he said he couldn't comment on the case any further due to the ongoing investigation.