Opening arguments in the trial of two suspects charged in the shooting death of a 33-year-old mother of four will start Wednesday.
Judge Robert Hood set the time Monday, after prosecution and defense lawyers picked a jury of eight women and four men. The 2013 killing of Kelly Hunnewell during an attempted robbery at a Columbia bakery set off a firestorm, after The State revealed two of the teens charged were out on bond for violent crimes.
Trenton Barnes, 17, and Lorenzo Young, 19, now face murder, kidnapping, burglary and attempted armed robbery charges. At the time of the incident, Barnes was 16, but due to the seriousness of the crime is being tried as an adult. The maximum sentence for the charges are life in prison.
A third man charged in the murder, Troy Stevenson, will be tried at a later date. He is expected to be a government witness in the trial against Barnes and Young.
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At the time of their arrests, law enforcement officers described all three as gang members.
It is not known how long the trial will last or if the defendants will testify. Prosecutors have submitted a potential witness list of more than 50 people. Defense attorneys’ potential witnesses number far fewer.
Hunnewell was the only employee working July 1 in the small building at 13 Tommy Circle, off Beltline Boulevard near Covenant Road, when she was shot. The building contained an off-site bakery for Carolina Cafe, a popular bagel shop along Pendleton Street near USC’s Horseshoe and the State House.
When three would-be robbers entered her kitchen around 3 a.m., Hunnewell, who was alone, resisted. She was shot multiple times, police later said. The robbers, who police said had found the bar next door closed, attacked Hunnewell instead.
Hunnewell had four children, who were ages 13, 9, 8 and 6, at the time of her death.
The suspects were arrested about a week after the killing, and it was discovered that Young and Stevenson were out on bond awaiting trial on other charges at the time – prompting public outrage and calls for bond reform. The case highlighted how easy it is in South Carolina for people to get out of jail after being arrested for violent crimes because, although the bond seems high, the defendant or relatives are allowed to put up only a small percentage. And the bail bondsmen aren’t usually held responsible if a defendant commits another violent crime while out on bond.
Prosecutors in the case, all veterans of numerous murder trials, are Luck Campbell, Dolly Garfield and Nicole Simpson. Young is represented by Richland County assistant prosecutors Stephen Krzyston, Jacqueline Bambach and Tracy Pinnock. Barnes is represented by Mark Schnee.