Man stabbed to death in Durham was witness to 2016 murder, warrant says

Durham County News

DURHAM, N.C. (WNCN) – A man who was stabbed to death in Durham in April was a key witness to a 2016 murder, according to a search warrant released Friday.

Durham police received a call about a stabbing at the Pure Mart at 101 E. Cornwallis Rd. shortly after 10 p.m. on April 28. They arrived to find John Mason “suffering from multiple stab wounds.”

He was taken to Duke University Hospital where he later died, the warrant said.

Curtis Barnette.

Investigators learned Mason was a key witness in the June 30, 2016 murder of Reginald Cole.

Curtis Barnette was arrested and charged in the death of Cole, the warrant said.

Barnette was released on a $100,000 unsecured bond and awaiting trial at the time of Mason’s murder, documents show.

An investigator working on Cole’s murder case said Mason had reported being assaulted between Cole’s murder and his own.

Two witnesses from the night of Mason’s murder described a man acting suspiciously. The man, who was wearing a gray or beige hoodie, was standing near the Pure Mart. He “appeared to avoid contact with other people by turning toward a wall when they passed by,” the warrant said.

Investigators are working to learn if another person may have been with Barnette on the evening of April 28.

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