The mother of one of the two Mexico, Mo., teens arrested and charged in the Tuesday night killing of Komninos “Gus” Karellas, 60, told a Mid-Missouri Major Case Squad detective that she helped the defendants destroy evidence, according to a probable cause statement obtained from the Audrain County courthouse.
Lance Lee Berry, 17, and Quinton O’Neal Canton Jr., 17, were arrested without incident in Hermann at 4:35 a.m. Thursday on warrants in connection with the killing, according to a Mexico Department of Public Safety news release.
Berry and Canton have each been charged with first-degree murder, first-degree robbery and two counts of armed criminal action in connection with Karellas’ death. They are being held without bond at the Audrain County Jail, said public safety director Michael Jerichow.
Also arrested was Canton’s mother, Donna M. Doyal, 39. She was charged with four counts of tampering with physical evidence and two counts of hindering prosecution.
She told a Jefferson City police detective that Canton and Berry arrived at her house between 8 and 10 p.m. Tuesday with some checks, which she burned, according to the probable cause statement. Berry was wearing bloodstained clothes and told Doyal that he had shot a man while robbing him, the statement said.
According to the statement, Doyal said she also told Berry to destroy his clothes and clean up. Doyal is being held at the Audrain County Jail on $250,000 bond.
The probable cause statement details further police and witness accounts of the events Tuesday night. It said Mexico police responded to a report of a person bleeding at G & D Steakhouse and found Karellas, the restaurant’s owner, on the kitchen floor. He was pronounced dead at Audrain Medical Center of a gunshot wound to the face and neck. An empty cartridge casing and a pool of blood were found near Karellas’ van behind the building, according to the statement.
Detectives with the Mid-Missouri Major Case Squad later interviewed a witness, age 15, who said she and another juvenile were in the car with Canton and Berry when they stopped around 9 p.m. at the Teal Lake Mall, where the steakhouse is located.
According to the witness, Canton and Berry left for about 30 minutes. Canton returned and drove behind the steakhouse where a masked Berry was hiding behind a dumpster. The two men talked outside until Canton drove back to the original spot. He left the car with a handgun, the witness told the investigators.
Five minutes later, the witness told police, Canton returned with Berry, who was wearing a bloodstained shirt, and all four drove to Doyal’s house.
The witness said she saw Berry give Donna Doyal some checks from a zippered bag containing cash. Canton and Berry placed the bloody clothes and two handguns in a trash bag in the garage after Berry showered, the witness said.
Jerichow could not say whether police believed the killing was planned or the result of a botched robbery.
“I don’t want to speculate on a motive,” he said.