NILES – In a Thursday-morning news conference, police said 28-year-old Keith Lintz of Niles had been a suspect in the murder of John and Carolyn Tarwacki almost from the start.
They first contacted him almost 1 week after the Feb. 5, 2010 murders, in an investigation that eventually spanned 4 states, 725 tips, and more than 300 interviews.
Lintz was arraigned in court Thursday morning. Cass County Prosecutor Victor Fitz accused him of stabbing John Tarwacki ten times and shooting him twice. Fitz said he stabbed Carolyn Tarwacki four times, shot her twice and she was beaten severely in the face.
Fitz said Lintz had beaten two other people in the past – one a woman in south bend. She had a facial beating similar to Carolyn Tarwacki.
Investigators uncovered many people who claim Lintz confessed the Tarwacki murders to them. He's being charged with two counts of felony murder and carrying a firearm to commit a felony.
The next court date is October 31 at 1:30 p.m. Then November 1 at 1:30 p.m.
It was in that morning when a man parked his car on Yankee St. near Carberry Rd, just outside the east Niles city limits, hiked a short distance through a wooded area, jumped a fence to the backyard of the Tarwackis and entered their home at 979 Carberry through the back door.
Within minutes the couple, married just three years, was dead. The killer retraced his steps to his car and drove away, leaving unanswered who he was along with his motive.
The Tarwackis, both employed by the music education company Quinlan & Fabish in Stevensville, were expected at a business meeting that morning, but never arrived.
Here's what we know about the suspect as of this morning: According to Berrien County police, Keith Lintz has been arrested several times since 2004. Most of the arrests were for operating while intoxicated.
WSBT was at the arraignment and news conference, and will be following this story through the day. Stay with us for the latest on air and online.