A 53-year-old Michigan man will spend the rest of his life behind bars for murdering, dismembering, and eating the severed genitalia of a 25-year-old man he met on the Grindr dating app.
Shiawassee County Circuit Judge Matthew J. Stewart on Thursday ordered Mark David Latunski to serve a sentence of life in prison without the possibility for parole for the slaying and dismemberment of Kevin Bacon, who was killed just before Christmas in 2019, court records reviewed by Law&Crime show.
Judge Stewart directly addressed Bacon’s family members, several of whom attended the proceeding, prior to handing down the sentence.
“I know nothing can ease your suffering and I know that the weight of your pain is without measure,” the judge said. “But it is my goal that perhaps today’s sentence will be a small amount of comfort in what I know is an enormity of hurt.”
The victim’s mother Pamela Vanhorn penned a victim impact statement that was read aloud in court by a social worker.
“Our world has been shattered. Even though we have such great memories of our son, our lives will never be the same or will our family,” the representative speaking on behalf of Vanhorn said. “Our family has been torn apart from all of the pain and confusion we endured from losing our son, and our daughter losing her brother. I don’t understand why anyone could want to hurt my son, especially in such a horrific and unbelievable way. He would have done anything for anyone, even if he had to use his last penny.”
Vanhorn’s statement continued, eventually addressing Latunski directly.
“Now Christmas for our family will never be the same to us, thanks to you taking our son away from us,” the representative read. “Even though we will finally get justice for Kevin, it still doesn’t feel like enough, and you still get to live and do things because a pig like you can never have remorse.”
Bacon’s sister and father also wrote victim impact statements that were read by representatives during Thursday’s proceeding.
Latunski in September pleaded guilty to one count of open murder and one count of disinterment and mutilation of a dead body in Bacon’s death, as previously reported by Law&Crime. Judge Stewart sentenced Latunski to life on the murder charge and 10 years on the disinterment charge, with the sentences running concurrent.
Because the murder charge Latunski pleaded to was left open, Judge Stewart ruled in October that he was guilty of first-degree murder following a two-day bench trial.
“The court does not find this crime committed in the heat of passion,” Stewart said during that proceeding. “The court finds that this is a crime of cold calculation. Kevin Bacon’s death was Mark Latunski’s design.”
Authorities in December 2019 found Bacon’s body in Latunski’s home in Bennington Township, located approximately an hour and a half northwest of Detroit. Police said that Bacon’s remains were hanging upside-down by a rope from the ceiling rafters of a hidden room inside of Latunski’s home. Latunski slit the Bacon’s throat before cutting off and eating the victim’s testicles.
Bacon’s roommate told investigators that after Bacon connected with Latunski on Grinder, the two arranged to meet in-person on Christmas Eve, The Detroit News reported. His family reported him missing the next day when he failed to show up for their annual Christmas gathering and could not be reached by phone.
Based on the tip about Bacon meeting someone from Grindr, authorities focused in on Latunski as the prime suspect in the case. He reportedly confessed to the horrific slaying and provided grisly post-mortem details in an interview with investigators on Dec. 28.
Alberto Luperon contributed to this report.
[Image via MLive/screengrab]
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