Woman convicted of capital murder in ‘carnival mafia’ deaths of Wichita couple
GREAT BEND, Kan. (KWCH) - A Barton County jury on Friday convicted a 57-year-old Texas woman in connection with the 2018 deaths of Wichita couple Alfred “Sonny” Carpenter and Pauline Carpenter. The jury convicted Kimberley Stacey Younger, of Aransas Pass, Texas on charges of capital murder, conspiracy to commit murder in the first degree, solicitation to commit murder in the first degree and theft.
Younger’s sentencing is set for Nov. 29. Four others have been convicted for their connection to the deaths of Sonny and Pauline Carpenter.
Prosecutors said the Carpenters were working as vendors at the Barton County Fair when they were killed, driven to Arkansas and buried in a shallow grave. In February 2020, Younger pleaded not guilty to capital murder in the case. In December 2019, a judge ruled that there was enough evidence presented in a preliminary hearing for the case against Younger to move forward.
Among those testifying in court during the preliminary hearing was Michael Fowler Jr., one of three others convicted in the deaths of the Carpenters.
Fowler and Van Buren, Ark. police said Younger posed as a man named Frank Zaitchik and messaged others to kill the Carpenters on the Barton County fairgrounds in Great Bend. Investigators said Younger used two other aliases.
In the December 2019 hearing, Fowler said the group, known as “the carnival mafia,” chose the Carpenters as targets for the crime because they would be easy targets. Investigators said they also found the gun used to kill the Carpenters in Youngers’ backpack.
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