The man accused of killing a Utah couple allegedly shot them to death while trying to enter their home again in an attempt to retrieve some keys he left behind during a successful robbery.
Tony Butterfield, 31, and Katherine Butterfield, 30, were shot to death in their West Jordan home on April 18 as they attempted to fight off an intruder, West Jordan Police spokesman Sgt. J.C. Holt previously told Oxygen.com. Their three children — ages 4, 2, and about 6 months old — were asleep when the killings took place. They were not harmed.
Albert Enoch Johnson, 31, was arrested a few days after the attack in the Sacramento area of California following a fight with police, Holt told Oxygen.com.
On Wednesday morning — a day after being extradited back to Utah — Johnson was charged with two counts of aggravated murder. He was also charged with two counts of aggravated robbery, two counts of aggravated kidnapping and one count of aggravated burglary on top of the aggravated murder charges, KSL-TV in Salt Lake City reports.
Additionally, Johnson was charged with two counts of possession of a firearm by a restricted person and one count of obstruction of justice.
Johnson allegedly admitted to investigators that he killed the couple following what seemed to be a successful robbery of their home, according to KSL-TV. He allegedly told investigators that he targeted the couple because he “believed they had money,” according to court documents obtained by The Salt Lake Tribune. He knew the couple, who ran a landscaping business, and had reportedly expressed a desire to be hired by them in the past.
The night of the murders, he allegedly kicked in the Butterfields' door wearing a mask, according to the court documents. He then allegedly forced the couple out of bed. They allegedly gave him $20 and two cellphones before he left their home.
However, he allegedly told police left his keys behind during the robbery and the killings occurred as when he returned to retrieve them.
Charging documents allege that Johnson shot Tony after Tony had stabbed him. Then, Johnson allegedly thought he saw a neighbor nearby so he shot Katherine, who was screaming by that point.
Tony's body was discovered in the backyard and Katherine's was found right inside the home's back doorway.
“It looks like there was probably some kind of altercation that happened right there," Holt previously told Oxygen.com. He said that the intruder may have been stabbed in his arms or legs after the couple grabbed a knife from within their home in defense.
Johnson’s wife, Sina Anne Johnson, 29, has also been arrested. She was charged with obstruction of justice and tampering with evidence before her husband was even captured, having been accused of disposing of evidence related to the double homicide.
Johnson allegedly admitted to throwing the murder weapon, a handgun, into a California river.
The slain couple was remembered as dedicated parents during their private funeral, which was live-streamed due to coronavirus concerns.
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