Iziah Barden was sentenced to death by the State of North Carolina for robbery murder. According to court documents Iziah Barden would beat to death his coworker Felipe Resendix and robbed. Iziah Barden would be arrested, convicted and sentenced to death.
Iziah Barden 2021 Information
|Probation/Parole/Post Release Status:||INACTIVE|
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Both defendant, Iziah Barden, and the victim, Felipe Resendiz, were employed by Master Casings, a business located in Clinton, North Carolina. Defendant was a machine operator, while the victim was a contract worker who cleaned the equipment in the evenings. The victim’s responsibilities often required that he work until 1:00 or 2:00 a.m., and he would close the business when he left.
Friday, 27 March 1998, was a payday at Master Casings. Around 4:30 that afternoon, the victim cashed his paycheck at a bank, then began work at the plant at 6:00 p.m. He was still on the job when the plant janitor left the building at 10:30 p.m.
The next morning, two workers found the lifeless victim lying face down in the plant. They observed obvious wounds to the back of his head and saw that his back pocket had been pulled inside out. Investigators found a stainless-steel paddle inside a bin near the body. A small amount of blood was on the paddle’s blade. An autopsy revealed that the victim had been struck on the head fourteen times. The evidence indicated that the victim’s assailant used different implements because some injuries were caused by an instrument with a sharp edge, while others were caused by an object with a round striking surface. The victim’s skull had been exposed by the blows and was fractured in several places. The cause of death was determined to be severe blunt-force trauma to the head.
On 5 April 1998, Iziah Barden was questioned by Detective Edward McClain of the Clinton Police Department. Detective McClain went to Master Casings, where defendant was working, and asked to speak with him. The detective identified himself, explained that he was investigating the victim’s death, and asked defendant to accompany him to the police station. He told defendant that he was not under arrest and did not have to come, but stated that he would appreciate defendant’s help. Defendant agreed and drove separately to the police station in his own vehicle. He went to the detective’s office, where the detective reminded defendant that he was not under arrest and did not advise defendant of his rights pursuant to Miranda v. Arizona. Defendant made a statement that was not incriminating.
After Iziah Barden completed this statement, the detective noticed a substance that appeared to be blood on the sole of one of defendant’s shoes. When the detective told defendant that there might be evidence on the shoe and asked if he could examine it, defendant consented and handed over both shoes. The detective seized the shoes after taking a closer look, and defendant was allowed to leave the police station wearing slippers provided by the police. Later analysis of the shoe revealed that the stain was indeed blood and that DNA from the blood matched DNA from the victim.
On 10 April 1998, the manager of a construction company conducted a predemolition inspection of a small building near the Master Casings plant. When he saw a bag that appeared to contain clothing and a billfold, he called the police. Responding officers found that the bag held bloody Master Casing uniform trousers with defendant’s name on the waistband, a billfold containing the victim’s driver’s license, and a sledgehammer. DNA analysis established that the blood on the steel paddle at Master Casings, the blood on the uniform trousers, and the blood found on the sledgehammer all came from the victim.
On 16 April 1998, investigators from the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation and the Clinton Police Department returned to Master Casings and asked to speak with defendant. As before, defendant was told he was not under arrest and was allowed to drive his own car to the office of the SBI agent. There, the investigators again informed defendant he was not under arrest and did not advise him of his Miranda rights.
Although Iziah Barden at first denied any involvement in the victim’s death, upon further questioning he confessed. He told the investigators that on 27 March 1998 he had been smoking crack cocaine at a house near Master Casings. He knew the victim would be working late, so around 11:00 p.m., he went to the plant to borrow money from the victim. The victim loaned him $20.00, which he used to purchase additional crack cocaine. After smoking that crack, defendant remained unsatisfied, so around 1:00 a.m. on 28 March 1998, he returned to Master Casings to borrow more money from the victim. According to defendant, when he made the request, the victim responded with some words in Spanish that he did not understand, followed by the word “black.” Defendant assumed that the victim had insulted him, but before he could react, the victim slapped him on his left cheek. Defendant said that he then was suffering from a toothache, so the slap had been particularly painful.
As the victim returned to his work, defendant said he saw a small sledgehammer on top of a machine. He picked it up and approached the victim from behind. Defendant said he struck the victim on the back of the head with the hammer three or four times. Defendant said the victim appeared to be trying to reach something, which he thought might be a weapon, in his front pocket. The victim fell, and defendant continued to hit him on the head with the hammer. The victim was still moving slightly and mumbling as defendant removed the victim’s wallet from his back pocket. Defendant said he changed his trousers because they were bloody and took $180.00 from the victim’s wallet. He put his pants, the now-empty wallet, and the sledgehammer in a bag that he left near some railroad tracks. After defendant completed this statement, the investigators allowed him to depart. He was arrested approximately two hours later.