Man, woman charged with murder after caught burying uncle's body

- A man and woman are charged with murder after they were caught trying to bury a body, according to the Alexander County Sheriff's Office.

Toni Hearne and Linsey Lentz had their first court appearance Thursday, according to the Iredell County DA. Their cases will continue to March 28, 2016. They were both given a court appointed attorney. And no bond, according to the Stanly County DA.

The sheriff said a call about a suspicious vehicle came in around 12:12 p.m. Wednesday, March 9. 

The incident happened on property west of Ellendale Elementary school.

Upon arrival, deputies discovered a vehicle struck on an incline in a wooded area at 6045 Highway 64-90 west. They were able to detain the two suspects, identified as Hearne, 53, and Lentz, 33.

More units were called to the scene. That's when a responding officer came upon the body of Robert Hearne Jr., 71, of Albemarle. Police said the body was found behind an abandoned house in a wooded area, partially covered in leaves and sticks.

As a precaution Ellendale Elementary was placed temporarily on a soft lock-down. 

According to the sheriff's office, Hearne Jr. is Toni's uncle.

Both Hearne and Lentz are charged with murder and failure to report a death. It's still unclear as to a motive or circumstances that occurred prior to the death. 

The investigation is ongoing. Both suspects are being held without bond.

Check back for updates.

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