Keana Barnes Shot & Killed Air Force Sgt. Perry ‘P.J.’ Jennings in Louisiana; Sentenced to 25 Years in Prison for 2 Homicides (March 27, 2003)

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Keana Barnes murdered Air Force Sgt. Perry ‘P.J.’ Jennings on March 27, 2003 in New Orleans, Louisiana. Keana had been staying with her friend PJ temporarily while she got back on her feet. After PJ’s parents couldn’t get in touch with him for a couple days, they went to his apartment to see if they could find him. The building manager let them in the house and they found PJ with a single gunshot wound to the head, a pillow had been used as a silencer for the gun. It appeared that he had been killed in his sleep and did not suffer. He family reports that he actually looked peaceful.

Family had learned that Keana Barnes was also accused of murdering Jimmy Shepherd a year earlier. But Keana told PJ and others that she killed Jimmy in self defense because he tried to rape her. Actually, Keana brutally stabbed Jimmy 27 times in her rage attack. Keana Barnes was jailed for the offense but let out of the prison because the District Attorney didn’t file charges within 60 days. As soon as they realized their mistake, they put out a warrant for Keana who at this point couldn’t be found because she was bouncing from place to place including PJs.

After Keana Barnes murdered PJ Jennings, she fled the scene with his wallet, cash, and credit cards. She used the credit cards and it became obvious to police that she was heading for the Mexico border. Keana successfully entered Mexico but at this time the US Marshals were looking for her and were able to track her down based on her credit card usage. She was arrested and extradited back to New Orleans, Louisiana where she would face a first degree murder charge for PJ and a second degree murder charge for Jimmy Shepherd.

After Keana’s affluent family found out she was charged with two homicides, they backed her and paid for the best attorney money could buy. The attorney recommended a plea deal that was initially secret until the judge and the families of PJ Jennings and Jimmy Shepherd found out. Keana’s attorney wanted to reduce the charges to manslaughter and give her a sentence of 7 to 25 years in prison, eligible for parole in three years. The judge refused to accept the terms of the plea agreement and changed the sentence on the spot to 25 years in prison, no parole.

In a stunning twist, less than half way through her sentence, Keana Barnes successfully escaped from the St. Gabriel’s Prison in New Orleans, Louisiana. She headed out west to California and about three months after the successful escape, she was stopped by some L.A. police officers who asked for her identification. Keana didn’t have any identification so she was placed in the back of the police cruiser where she admitted to who she was. She was again extradited back to New Orleans, Louisiana to face additional time for the prison escape. Keana will be released in 2027 and she will be 44 years old when she is released.


Two deceased men both helped out a damsel in distress. Did playing the good samaritan cost them their lives, and should authorities be worried that she could put someone else at risk? -Snapped on Oxygen

Related Links:
Woman serving time for manslaughter escapes prison
Investigator: Escaped killer Barnes is street-smart, cold-blooded
Escaped Louisiana Woman on the Run After Jail Break
Louisiana fugitive Keana Barnes added to U.S. Marshals’ Most Wanted list
Police still hunting a two-time murderer who bounded a barbed wire fence to escape a Louisiana prison on New Year’s Day
New information about escaped female inmate
Murder victim’s father afraid for family, public after woman escapes St. Gabriel prison
Murder Victim’s Family Concerned After Keana Barnes Escapes Prison
Murderer Keana Barnes Escapes Prison Murder Victims family worried after Woman Escapes Prison
St. Gabriel escapee caught in California
Louisiana fugitive Keana Barnes found in Los Angeles
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Keana Barnes returns to prison after capture
Prison escapee Keana Barnes back behind bars in Louisiana
Keana Barnes on Snapped | Oxygen
Snapped: Preview – Keanna Barnes (Season 22, Episode 3) | Oxygen
Snapped: After the Verdict – Keana Barnes (Season 22, Episode 3) | Oxygen
Snapped: Bonus Clip – A Cookout with Keana Barnes (Season 22, Episode 3) | Oxygen
Snapped: Bonus Clip – Keana’s Temper Tantrums (Season 22, Episode 3) | Oxygen

Shonda Walter Used a Hatchet to Kill Neighbor & WWII Vet James Sementelli; Sentenced to Death But Commuted to Life in Prison, No Parole (March 25, 2003)

Shonda Walter 1

Shonda Walter

“James E. Sementelli was a Private in the United States Army during World War II. He grew up in Lock Haven and was stationed at the Army’s Fort Weaver on Oahu when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941. After the war, he returned to Lock Haven, Pennsylvania where he worked as a taxi driver, in the post office, and at a paper mill. Unfortunately, Mr. Sementelli was a murder victim as part of a gang initiation and robbery” on March 25, 2003. [Neighbor Shonda Walter was found guilty of homicide and sentenced to death in 2005 but the death sentence was commuted to life in prison without the possibility of parole due to ineffective counsel in 2016.] –Find A Grave

Investigation Discovery:

Neighbors can be a source of friendship and community comfort. But what happens when a neighbor stops watching out for you, and starts watching you. The sinister minds of these women begin to turn sour and they begin to torment their neighbors. -Loathe Thy Neighbor, Deadly Women (S5, E2)

Editor’s note: With a cable subscription, you can download the free ID Go app and watch Investigation Discovery programming at your convenience. And for those who do not have cable, you can watch “unlocked” episodes on the ID Go app including the latest premieres. For those who prefer commercial free programming during your binge session, Prime Video has an ID channel: ‘True Crime Files by Investigation Discovery” available for $3.99 a month. It’s a compilation of older seasons but totally worth the cost if you are a true crime addict. Download the ID Go app or purchase ID True Crime Files & binge away.

Related Links:
James E. Sementelli (1920-2003) | Find A Grave
Car, Change Said to Spur Homicide
Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Appellee v. Shonda WALTER, Appellant (2009)
Lock Haven woman convicted of murder inching closer to execution
Quest for the truth aids lead prosecutor in Sandusky case, colleagues say
Death Row Delays: Victims’ Families Frustrated with Slow Death Penalty Process
Shonda Walter, a 36-year-old Black woman on Pennsylvania’s death row
Three women on Pennsylvania’s death row
Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Appellee v. Shonda WALTER, Appellant (2015)
Shonda Walter Escapes Death Row in Vet’s Hatchet Killing
Shonda Walter Death Row: Murderer Given A Stay Of Execution
Shonda Walter Removed From Death Row, Sentence Thrown Out
Could One of These Cases Spell the End of the Death Penalty?
Supreme Court declines death penalty case
Death penalty imposed on woman in 2003 slaying thrown out
Judge vacates death sentence of convicted Clinton County hatchet murderer
Woman’s vacated death sentence brings death row count to 177
The Death Penalty Endgame | NY Times Opinion
World View: Death penalty opponents sense an opportunity
Is the Supreme Court going to reconsider the constitutionality of the death penalty?
Could these cases, including some from Louisiana, end America’s death penalty?
Supreme Court won’t hear capital punishment case
Death penalty decision won’t hinge on PA case
Supreme Court rejects appeal to outlaw death penalty
Supreme Court rejects Pa. female death row inmate’s appeal to outlaw capital punishment
Supreme Court won’t decide on status of executions. 180 Pennsylvanians sit on death row
Victim’s family, others resigned to Walter life sentence
Pennsylvania Inmate Shonda Walter Receives Stay Ahead of May 3, 2016, Execution
15 Vicious Criminals Who Barely Escaped Death Row On Technicality
Shonda Walter Women On Death Row
Shonda Walter | Supreme Court of the US | Death Penalty Information Center
Women Currently on Death Row in the United States
Women and Capital Punishment in the United States: An Analytical History
Shonda Dee Walter | Murderpedia, the encyclopedia of murderers
List of Deadly Women episodes | Wikipedia
Deadly Women Premiered ‘Loathe Thy Neighbor’ on Investigation Discovery: Shonda Walter Killed Elderly Neighbor for Gang Initiation (August 5, 2011)
Loathe Thy Neighbor | Deadly Women | Investigation Discovery (S5, E2)
Loathe Thy Neighbor | Deadly Women | Investigation Discovery (website)
Loathe Thy Neighbor | Deadly Women | Investigation Discovery (Amazon)
Loathe Thy Neighbor | Deadly Women | Investigation Discovery (Hulu)

Army Sergeant Hasan Akbar Used a Grenade & Rifle to Harm Fellow Soldiers in Kuwait Resulting in Two Deaths & Several Injuries; Sentenced to Death by Military Court (2003)


Hasan Akbar, US Army

Sergeant Hasan Akbar, US Army, was sentenced to death by the military courts in 2005 for the March 23, 2003 grenade and rifle attacks on his fellow soldiers at Camp Pennsylvania in Kuwait. Akbar was accused of rolling hand grenades inside tents at a military command center and then opening fire. Army Captain Christopher Scott Seifert and Air Force Major Gregory L. Stone died in the attacks and fourteen others were wounded in the chaotic grenade and rifle attack. According to testimony, Akbar had been repeatedly disciplined by Army leadership for insubordination and it was also learned from his own diary entries that he carefully planned the attacks to result in maximum carnage. It appeared that Akbar targeted senior command staff and his motive was to stop US soldiers from harming his fellow Muslims. He was convicted of premeditated first degree murder. Akbar continues to appeal his death sentence and as of 2016 he has requested that the US Supreme Court hear his case in an attempt to reverse the death sentence imposed by the UCMJ. Hasan Akbar currently sits on death row at Fort Leavenworth prison in Kansas with three other service members: Timothy HennisRonald Gray, and Nidal Hasan.

Related Links:
The Truth About Sgt. Hasan Karim Akbar
Soldier held in deadly grenade attack on 101st
Army: U.S. Soldier Acted Out of Resentment in Grenade Attack
Retracing life of attack suspect / UC Davis grad is Muslim with alleged doubts about Iraq war
Soldier accused of attack on officers in Kuwait called an ‘ideal student’
Jury selection begins in trial of Army accused fragger Sgt. Hasan Akbar
Hearing Recalls Grenade Attack
Army Soldier Is Convicted In Attack on Fellow Troops
Soldier Convicted in Deadly Attack on His Camp
Soldier convicted of murder in grenade attack in Kuwait
GI Sentenced to Death for Fatal Attack
Akbar gets death sentence
Soldier who attacked comrades in Iraq sentenced to death
United States v. Hasan Akbar (2005)
When Refusing to Kill Has a Higher Sentence Than Murder
Fort Hood Shooter Could Join 5 Others on Death Row
Muslims In America – Violent Clashing Of Cultures
Fort Hood shootings: How often do soldiers kill soldiers?
Trust is a casualty after Abdo’s arrest
For Military Psych Boards, There Is (Almost) No Insanity Defense
On military death row, execution is anything but guaranteed
Crime and Punishment, Military-Style
Military death row: More than 50 years and no executions
Hasan gets death penalty, but execution years away
A Brief History of Radical Islamists in the U.S. Armed Forces
Fort Hood murderer, two others seen headed to notorious U.S. prison
Appeal for Soldier Convicted in ’03 Grenade Attack
Appeal scheduled for Hasan Akbar, soldier convicted of murder at Fort Bragg
Former soldier gets hearing before military appeals court
Appeal for soldier convicted in ’03 grenade attack
Williams Township soldier killed in Iraq War remembered 10 years later
United States v. Hasan Akbar, US Army (2015)
Military court upholds death sentence in 2003 ‘fragging’ case
Military court upholds death sentence in 2003 ‘fragging’ case
Hasan K. Akbar Loses Death Sentence Appeal
With Obama’s Help, Assembling Allah’s Domestic Army Is Now Easier
Not All US Muslim Soldiers Are Equal
Muslim Soldiers Have Murdered as Many US Soldiers as the Enemy Have Killed Muslim Soldiers
Soldier Asks High Court To Review His Death Sentence
Terrorist calling on Supreme Court to reverse UCMJ death sentence
Soldier Sentenced to Die for 2003 Murders Pins Hopes on Supreme Court
Nidal Hasan, and the 5 other men on the military’s death row