Man indicted in murder of Scottsdale cabbie

A 36-year-old man has been indicted on a second-degree murder charge in connection with the beating of a 39-year-old Scottsdale cab driver in February, according to a spokesperson with the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office.

Scottsdale police arrested DB Starnes III in February on suspicion of aggravated assault against Andrew Carnevale, who authorities said never regained consciousness and died at a hospice facility about three weeks after the incident with Starnes.

Carnevale witnessed an argument between Starnes, and Starnes’ girlfriend, according to court documents. Carnevale and Starnes became involved in a fight at some point during or immediately after the couple’s argument.

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Starnes was later indicted for misdemeanor assault against his girlfriend and misdemeanor criminal damage for destroying her property, court records show. Both misdemeanors are considered acts of domestic violence.

Details of the new indictment were not immediately available.

Starnes told police he defended himself after Carnevale attacked him while his girlfriend screamed at him. Starnes’ attorney did not immediately return a call seeking comment.

Carnevale had picked up Starnes’ girlfriend and another couple from a Scottsdale bar at about 1 a.m. Feb. 3, court records show. The friends had been bar hopping and requested a cab to take them to an apartment near Camelback and Miller roads.

Starnes and his girlfriend had argued earlier in the night, and he’d returned home after separating from the group, court records show.

When Carnevale dropped the trio off, Starnes argued with his girlfriend as she exited the cab, court records show. A 911 caller reported hearing a man and woman screaming at each other. Another 911 caller said they saw a woman get pushed to the ground.

An altercation between Starnes and Carnevale ensued, according to court records. Starnes told police he defended himself after Carnevale attacked him while his girlfriend screamed at him.

Police said Carnevale sustained severe head trauma in the fight and reportedly suffered seizures, court records show. He almost died at the scene and became comatose, police wrote in a probable cause statement.

Emergency crews transported Carnevale to Scottsdale Healthcare Osborn Medical Center where he remained until he was discharged to a hospice facility.

Starnes fled the scene of the fight, but police discovered him a couple hours later hiding underneath a staircase, court records show.

Scottsdale police noted Starnes, who had moved to Scottsdale from Michigan a week before the incident, had a swollen right hand with scrapes and pieces of skin hanging from it, according to courts document. He also had a scraped knee, which police say occurred when he and Carnevale fell to the ground during the fight.

The arresting officer wrote that the amount of force Starnes reportedly used against Carnevale was neither “necessary or reasonable.”

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