Murdered Trucker Gets Justice as Third Suspect Found Guilty
Flowerfield Township, MI – A St. Joseph County jury found the third suspect charged in the November 2018 slaying of a Kentucky trucker guilty of murder.
After a week-long trial, Theron Hunt, 41, was found guilty of murdering 42-year-old truck driver Kevin Johnson, of Floyd County, KY, during a drug deal.
He was convicted on charges of felony murder, armed robbery, unlawful imprisonment, second-degree criminal sexual conduct and felony firearm.
Hunt is scheduled for sentencing on February 12, 2020, and is facing a mandatory life sentence.
In the early morning hours of November 14, 2018, authorities were called to a residence in a Flowerfield Township neighborhood and found Johnson on the front stairs bleeding and suffering from a gunshot wound to the chest.
It only took investigators a few days until they arrested and charged three suspects: Hunt, Tyler McNeil, 21, and Kayla Chaney, 25, with a pile of serious offenses.
In May of 2019, Chaney, who is the one identified as pulling the trigger and killing Johnson, pleaded guilty to second-degree murder.
She was subsequently sentenced to 25 to 75 years in prison.
In November of 2019, McNeil pleaded guilty to armed robbery and is expected to be sentenced to at least 12 years in prison at a hearing later this month.
How Did It All Go Down?
Stanielle King is the owner of the home where Johnson’s murder took place.
In January 2019, she testified during a preliminary hearing that Johnson messaged her the night he was murdered asking to purchase meth for he and his girlfriend.
According to a source close to the investigation, King once lived in Kentucky near where Johnson and his girlfriend lived.
King was friends with Johnson’s girlfriend, which is how Johnson met King.
TNN sources indicate Johnson and his girlfriend had frequented King’s home a few times for dinner and to buy drugs on their way through the area along Johnson’s trucking route.
King testified that she reached out to Hunt that night, whom she said she had only met the day before, in hopes he had the drugs she needed to meet Johnson’s request.
When Hunt said he did, King gave Hunt directions to her home.
King says when Hunt arrived he was accompanied by Chaney and McNeil, who was wearing a mask and holding a short-handled shotgun.
The three of them, according to testimony, beat her and then taped her mouth, eyes and hands while holding her at gunpoint.
Hunt then threatened to sexually assault her, according to King.
She says McNeil then held a knife to her back and led her to her bedroom.
While McNeil smoked meth and kept King subdued, Chaney and Hunt ransacked the house looking for drugs and other valuables to steal.
King testified that Chaney and Hunt were removing items from her home and placing them in their car outside when Johnson and his girlfriend pulled up in his semi.
New testimony reveals Johnson entered the home while his girlfriend remained in the truck.
According to investigators, Hunt demanded $200 for the drugs (which were fake), but Johnson said he didn’t have the money.
Johnson was then held at gunpoint and forced to the ground by Chaney while Hunt went outside and entered the semi-truck looking for cash and other valuables.
After threatening Johnson’s girlfriend, Hunt took cash along with Johnson’s cellphone.
That’s when King says she heard a “boom.”
That “boom” was the gunshot that killed Johnson.
During a struggle between Chaney and Johnson, Chaney shot and killed him.
Hunt, Chaney and McNeil then fled in their borrowed vehicle and Johnson’s girlfriend began screaming for help.
King said Johnson attempted to pursue the criminals after he was shot, but was unable to get far and fell onto the steps in front of the home.
“I just kept saying, ‘Stay with us, we need you bud,’” King said of her interaction with Johnson after he had been shot.
According to investigators, the three perpetrators then drove into Van Buren County where they disposed of the weapon and burned evidence such as their bloody clothes.
Hunt later led investigators to where they had dumped the gun and it was recovered.
During her testimony, King, who has a prior criminal history of drug possession, did admit she was “high” at the time of the deadly altercation.
At one point during her testimony, the judge warned her about the possibility of incriminating herself in connection with additional crimes, but King said, “I’d rather have that than not have justice for Kevin.”