Dismembered man found in Pass Christian; Search on for suspect

Richard Lambert aka Jimmy Brantley (Photos courtesy Harrison Co. Sheriff's Dept.)
Richard Lambert aka Jimmy Brantley (Photos courtesy Harrison Co. Sheriff's Dept.)

By Danielle Thomas - bio | email

HARRISON COUNTY, MS (WLOX) -  The dismembered remains of an elderly Long Beach man were identified Wednesday morning, and investigators are searching for the man they believe killed him.

"Mr. Robert Barnes was reported missing by one of his neighbors on Saturday," said Chief Deputy Landi Phillips. "We began to search for Mr. Barnes at that time."

On Tuesday, deputies say a fisherman in Discovery Bay, which is north of Pass Christian, came upon human body parts. Forensic tests showed the remains were that of the missing 79-year-old, and that Barnes had been stabbed and dismembered.

Deputies say they were soon able to name their murder suspect as Richard Lambert.

"Through the investigation we determined that there was an association between Mr. Barnes and Mr. Lambert, who was residing in the neighborhood close to where Mr. Barnes lived," Chief Deputy Phillips said.

Investigators say Richard Lambert is 5' 6" and weighs 135 pounds. He has red hair and green eyes. Lambert sometimes uses the name Jimmy Brantley, which authorities say he used to cash a check belonging to the victim. Investigators believe Lambert robbed and killed Barnes at Barnes' Long Beach home.

Chief Deputy Phillips said, "It was a very gruesome crime. It was a brutal scene for the investigators and those of us involved in the recovery efforts."

"That's all the more reason why we are encouraging and asking for the help of the citizens who have any information relating to any of the events surrounding what may have occurred on Discovery Bay on Saturday."

WLOX spoke to a woman who lived next door to Robert Barnes for more than 30 years. She said he was a kind man who lived alone and had recently been in the hospital.

Richard Lambert was last seen driving a silver/gray 1994 740i BMW. It has a Kentucky tag number 540 BRM. Besides being a murder suspect, Lambert is also wanted on a Forgery charge in Harrison County and a federal probation violation in Ohio.

If you have any information that could help investigators, call the Harrison County Sheriff's Department at (228) 897-1364 or (228) 896-0678.

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