Central Islip, NY - January 28, 2014 - A 34 year old Central Islip homicide suspect accused of strangling his neighbor to death and hiding the body in his bedroom closet pleaded guilty to the murder this morning just before his trial was to begin in Suffolk criminal court.
Aston Barth admitted killing Jason Campbell, 35, during an argument in Barth’s Ferndale Boulevard home 13 months ago. In his statement to police detectives, Barth said he used an axe to partially decapitate the corpse, and that he wrapped the body in a blanket and trash bag before putting it in his closet. His mother and brother found the body there on December 24, 2012.
A week later, the defendant’s mother and brother found Campbell’s body.
The victim’s family, who described the defendant and the victim as close friends for over 20 years, was present for Barth’s plea and expressed relief they would not be forced to endure the retelling of their loved one’s fate during a trial.
Barth will be sentenced on February 26 to 15 years to life in state prison.