Arrest Made In Connection With Starks Murder
Zachary Bench has been arrested and charged in the death of 33 year old Jody Barlow. Calcasieu Parish Sheriff Tony Mancuso said that Bench is currently in the Calcasieu Correctional Center and has been charged with second degree murder, armed robbery, and obstruction of justice.
These charges were brought after investigators determined through a variety of resources that 21 year old Bench was the prime suspect in the case.
Sheriff Mancuso explained the details of the investigation that led to the arrest of Bench to the Louisiana Radio Network,
Through our investigation and leads we were able to get from people and surveillance footage we were able to obtain from some local stores around there, we were able to put some pieces together and arrest Zachary A. Bench, 21, of Vinton.
The motive behind the murder appears to be robbery. The victims truck, trailer, an ATV, and several other items were found to be missing.
There really is no logical reason. There was no fight that we know of, no struggle. We just believe he wanted what he had and the only way to get it was to kill him.
The sheriff went on to say that Barlow and Bench did know each other but he did not believe it was a close friendship.
Barlow's body was discovered near the community of Starks. His burned out truck and trailer were discovered on Greenmore Road approximately 10 miles away from where Barlow's body was found. It is believed that Barlow was working construction in the area in which he was killed.
Witnesses reported seeing black smoke coming from the area where the burned truck was found in the 2000 block of Greenmore Road. This was reported about 9:30 on Wednesday morning. Authorities have another person of interest they are investigating in connection with this case since it is believed that Bench needed assistance in getting the truck and trailer from where the vehicle was stolen to the area where it was ultimately discovered.