Police arrest parents, girlfriend of fugitive charged in South Salt Lake killing

Police investigate a fatal shooting near the parking lot of a South Salt Lake WinCo store, 2193 S. Main, on May 9. The parents and girlfriend of one of three people wanted in the shooting death of a man in a South Salt Lake grocery store parking lot have been arrested and accused of helping the fugitives stay on the run.

Police investigate a fatal shooting near the parking lot of a South Salt Lake WinCo store, 2193 S. Main, on May 9. The parents and girlfriend of one of three people wanted in the shooting death of a man in a South Salt Lake grocery store parking lot have been arrested and accused of helping the fugitives stay on the run. (Mengshin Lin, Deseret News)



Estimated read time: 3-4 minutes

SOUTH SALT LAKE — Three people wanted in connection with a killing in a South Salt Lake grocery store parking lot have been on the run for three months.

Now, police have arrested the parents of one of the suspects as well as his girlfriend, accusing them of helping the wanted fugitives avoid arrest.

Police served a search warrant on the Roy residence of the wanted fugitives Wednesday and arrested Damian Stafon Coleman, 49, Liana Deleon Guerrero Blas, 20, and Kenya Suzette Coleman, 47, all for investigation of obstruction of justice.

Romeo Charles Stevens, 27, was shot multiple times and killed on May 9 in the parking lot at WinCo, 2193 S. Main. His body was found on Main Street near the entrance to the store.

Surveillance video showed two men chasing Stevens through the parking lot before he was shot, according to a police booking affidavit. A third man was driving a Chevrolet Impala and followed the group that was chasing Stevens. After the shooting, the two men running after the victim got into the Impala and drove away.

Damian Stafon Coleman, 27, who is suspected of driving the car, was arrested for investigation of murder and aggravated robbery.

On May 20, McKennalyn Elizabeth Cummins, 24, of Portage, Box Elder County; Terell Jones, 30, of Roy; and Stafon Dshawn Coleman, 21, of Roy, were charged in 3rd District Court with murder and aggravated robbery, first-degree felonies; and obstructing justice, a second-degree felony.

The trio has been on the run since the shooting.

The three people arrested Wednesday "have been assisting the remaining suspects in this case evade capture by helping them travel across several different states during the last three months," according to South Salt Lake police.

Police say the suspects all lived in the same house. Kenya and Damian Coleman are Stafon Coleman's parents. Blas is Coleman's girlfriend, a police booking affidavit states.

Kenya Coleman lied to police about who lived in her her house, and even "claimed to not know who her stepson was and denied knowing about what car he drives, even though the car was parked at her home and the fact the stepson told her about the (shooting)," according to the affidavit.

Damian Coleman also "lied about where his adult children were on the evening of the homicide. (He) stated the suspects were at his home drinking beer. This is a lie because the suspects — his children — were in Salt Lake City and South Salt Lake planning a robbery which turned into a homicide at the time he claimed they were with him in Roy," another police affidavit states.

Investigators say Kenya Coleman's car was spotted in Las Vegas on May 11, and was back at her Roy home on May 12. Detectives believe the outstanding suspects were at one point in California and later in Texas, the affidavit states.

When police spoke to Damian Coleman again on May 16, they said he claimed he did not know his wife's car was gone for nearly 24 hours. He also claimed not to have a cellphone or know the phone numbers of his children, according to the affidavit, even though police had previously observed him talking on a cellphone several times.

When officers served a warrant on Wednesday, they learned that Blas had been with Stafon Coleman in both California and Texas, according to the affidavit.

"It is readily apparently (Kenya Coleman) and her husband assisted with helping cover for their children the day after the homicide and assisted them with fleeing the state to avoid prosecution," police wrote in the arrest report.

"(Damian Coleman) stated he has been to prison before and would not be saying anything to the police in relation to helping find his children and safely take them into custody," a second affidavit notes.

Anyone with information about the outstanding suspects is asked to contact police at nhill@sslc.gov or by calling 801-412-3655.

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Pat Reavy is a longtime police and courts reporter. He joined the KSL.com team in 2021 after many years of reporting for the Deseret News

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