Union County prosecutors said Wednesday they will not seek the death penalty against a man accused of robbing, killing and dismembering an acquaintance in the summer.
Monroe resident Keith Edward McCarthy, 42, was arrested July 30 and charged with first-degree murder, robbery with a dangerous weapon and concealing the death of Jaime Hernandez.
Wednesday’s disclosure in Superior Court came during a “Rule 24” conference that is required in first-degree murder cases. In those conferences prosecutors declare their intent on whether they would seek capital punishment if there is a conviction in the case.
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At the end of the brief hearing, McCarthy, wearing an orange jumpsuit, slightly raised his shackled hands to wave to someone sitting nearby.
Hernandez, 41, also was a Monroe resident and lived about four miles from McCarthy’s home in the 400 block of Tucker Street. Hernandez was last seen alive on July 6.
McCarthy worked as a roofer for an Indian Trail contractor and Hernandez was an unemployed construction worker.
Hernandez apparently was killed between July 6 and July 8, court records show. Authorities have said they believe Hernandez was killed at McCarthy’s home.
Hernandez was robbed of $1,381 cash and beaten with an aluminum baseball bat before he died, court records show.
On July 24, a hunter found human remains in a wooded area off U.S. 74 in Stallings.
Garbage bags and a 50-gallon rugged tote storage container held the remains, court records show.
McCarthy remains in Union County Jail without bail.