Crime

Stock Island ‘tree house’ murder suspects due in court

This is the tree house on Laurel Avenue on Stock Island where police say three people were living when the murder took place.
This is the tree house on Laurel Avenue on Stock Island where police say three people were living when the murder took place. Keynoter

As prosecutors consider formal charges, the three suspects accused of murdering a man at a Stock Island tree house shanty are due to appear at the Monroe County Courthouse Dec. 21 for arraignments.

The three are accused of murder in connection with the slashing death of Mathew Bonnett, 59, during a robbery at 5650 Laurel Ave.

Bonnet had gone over to a neighbor’s house to help after hearing a commotion when he was attacked by two men, police said.

Rory Hank Wilson, 50, of Stock Island was arrested for murder, two counts of armed robbery and two counts of committing a second-degree felony while wearing a mask.

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Wilson

Franklin Tyrone Tucker, 46, of Key West is charged with two counts of armed robbery, one count of felony murder, two counts of wearing a mask while committing a felony, three counts of aggravated battery and with tampering with a witness.

John Travis Johnson, 39, of Marathon reportedly the planned getaway driver, was arrested for two counts of robbery and with felony murder.

All three Friday remained jailed at the Stock Island Detention Center without bond.

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Tucker

Paula Belmonte, 53, was also wounded while being robbed by Tucker and Wilson while Johnson waited in his pickup truck outside, according to the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office.

Investigators say Tucker, Johnson and Wilson planned the robbery after hearing there might be a large amount of cash at Belmonte’s home. Johnson drove the two other men to the scene of the homicide in his black truck and waited.

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Johnson

Tucker and Wilson, dressed in black and wearing masks, went inside just after 8 p.m. and held at knifepoint Belmonte and a male friend who was visiting. During the robbery, Belmonte’s neck was cut, police say. Tucker and Wilson fled and encountered Bonnett on the stairs.

Gwen Filosa: @KeyWestGwen

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