An elderly Salt Lake woman was stabbed to death in her home Tuesday night after she apparently walked in on a burglar.
Klea M. Sorenson, 80, 733 E. 700 South, was stabbed and apparently hit over the head as she returned home from grocery shopping about midday Tuesday.Salt Lake Police Lt. Mark Zelig said officers discovered the widow's body in her kitchen about 8 p.m. after finding evidence during a crime investigation a few blocks away.
Police received a call from a Salt Lake man who said he believed his houseguest had just killed someone. He said his guest came home with a bloody knife and hands and also had a woman's identification, a police report said.
Officers went to a house in the 800 East block of 500 South, where they found a 26-year-old man with blood on his hands and pants. Sorenson's identification was located in a trash can, and officers went to her address to check on her welfare.
"When we arrived to check out the burglary, we found the woman deceased," Zelig said. Police believe the woman may have walked in on the burglar and that she may have confronted him.
The woman's body was found at 8 p.m., but the state medical examiner indicated she may have died up to eight hours earlier. Bags of groceries were still on the kitchen table when officers discovered her body.
The suspect, who is from the Denver area, was arrested after police officers checked his criminal background in the National Crime Information Center Computer and found he was wanted in Colorado on a warrant listing a charge of receiving stolen property. Keith Carney was booked into the Salt Lake County Jail for investigation of criminal homicide and being a fugitive from justice. He is being held without bail.
Zelig said the suspect threatened police as he was being hauled into a police van, saying he would " . . . come back and get each and every one of you and I know your names."
Salt Lake Police Lt. Norm Thompson, assistant division commander, said Tuesday night's homicide is the 21st in Salt Lake City this year.
"We're running just above average this year for homicides. It's slightly above. . . . This is not just in Utah. This is a thing that plagues the United States because it's difficult to apprehend burglars, to keep them out," Thompson said.
The body was transported early Wednesday morning to the medical examiner's office for autopsy, Thompson said.
Officers served a search warrant at the suspect's home Tuesday night, but they declined to say what was recovered until they meet with the county attorney's office to screen charges.
Don Lane, the victim's LDS bishop, said the neighborhood has been terrorized during the past 10 years by an increase in burglaries.
"We've had a number of very serious burglaries in the ward."
Lane said the victim, who lived alone, was very independent and "took good care of herself."
"She was very active . . . This could have been my mother."
"This is very shocking to me. We've lost a very dear and sweet (woman)," Lane said.
Another neighbor, Ron Johnson, 28, who lives across the street from the victim's home, said the neighborhood is concerned.
"We're scared. During the past six months, it's been really heavy. We've had a lot of burglaries. They (burglars) come around in bicycles, on foot."