A man who opened fire inside his ex-girlfriend’s Banning home, fatally injuring her and her stepfather, avoided the death penalty by pleading guilty to double murder charges Wednesday and was immediately sentenced to life imprisonment without the possibility of parole, plus 50 years.
Kris Kenny of San Bernardino, 45, shot 37-year-old Shanetta Dixon and her stepfather, Francisco Sanchez on Dec. 29, 2017, and was on the lam for a month before he was captured by a U.S. marshals’ task force.
Dixon was pronounced dead at San Gorgonio Memorial Hospital in Banning, and Sanchez died after being hospitalized for several weeks in a medically induced coma.
Kenny was arrested in Rialto on Jan. 30 after making an unsuccessful attempt to flee, which triggered a chase and search of the surrounding area, according to Banning police. Authorities caught up with him somewhere on Eucalyptus Avenue, jail records show.
Prosecutors charged Kenny in January with one count each of murder and attempted murder, but the complaint was amended following Sanchez’s death. He also faced sentence-enhancing allegations of lying in wait and committing multiple murders, which could have made him eligible for the death penalty if convicted. However, prosecutors filed paperwork indicating that they were not seeking capital punishment on Wednesday, the same day Kenny entered his guilty plea to both murder counts and all special circumstance allegations.
Kenny and Dixon dated for around five years before their relationship ended about six months prior to the shooting, according to an arrest warrant declaration prepared by a Banning police detective.
On the night of Dec. 29, he called Dixon’s mother and requested to speak with her daughter because he said “he found out he had cancer and it had spread to both of his lungs, and he wanted to let Dixon know,” according to the declaration, which says he showed up at the victims’ home on East Hoffer Street about 10 minutes later.
Dixon’s mother told police that she briefly spoke with him and prayed with him before telling him he should leave. He then asked her for water and something to eat, and as she was in the kitchen, he went to her daughter’s room and shot her multiple times, the declaration states.
Dixon’s mother heard gunshots and her daughter screaming, then saw Kenny walking out with a handgun while telling her “move Mom, move,” according to the document.
Sanchez, who was in another part of the home, walked out of a bedroom to see what was happening and was shot, according to the declaration. Police arrived to find Sanchez suffering from “major wounds” but awake and on his knees. He was able to identify Kenny as the shooter, the declaration says.
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