COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) - The Columbia Police Department has arrested three men in connection with the killing of a Columbia mother of four last week.
Crimestoppers tips led to the apprehension of Troy Stevenson, 18, Lorenzo Young, 18 and a 16-year-old, Columbia Police Chief Ruben Santiago said Monday afternoon.
All three have been charged with murder, kidnapping, attempted armed robbery and various other crimes, Santiago said. The juvenile, who is related to one of the suspects, will be tried as an adult.
The chief said Stevenson and Young are documented gang members. "That's what these gang members did, they committed a murder," said Santiago.
The body of 33-year-old Kelly L. Hunnewell was discovered by a neighbor early Monday morning inside a bakery at 93 Tommy Circle.
The case captured the attention of thousands in the Midlands after police released surveillance video of three men who entered the bakery around 3:30 a.m. and then hurriedly left after one of them shot Hunnewell.
Santiago said investigators believe the three went to the area to rob a club next door to the bakery but they moved on to the bakery when they discovered the club to be closed.
According to police, it appears Young and Stevenson went into the bakery while the juvenile stayed outside to serve as a "lookout."
Investigators said after the men entered, Hunnewell saw a man who had a weapon and swatted at him. That's when the shots were fired.
"She put up a fight," said Santiago. "She just really stood her ground and said, 'I'm not gonna take this.'"
Hunnewell was working the early shift to be able to spend more time with her children, family members said in the days following the homicide.
The family has set up a trust fund for Kelly's children. They say they were unable to cover Kelly's burial expenses and wish to help provide for her children at they get older. If you'd like to donate, click here.