Man charged in St. Paul double fatal funeral shooting that killed chef

A man has been charged in a double homicide outside a celebration of life event in St. Paul.

John Lee Edmondson, 52, of St. Louis Park, is charged with three counts of second-degree murder in the fatal shooting of Larry Jiles, 34, of Hugo, and Troy Kennedy, 37, of St. Paul, after a celebration of life event in St. Paul on Feb. 25 on Dale Street North. The shooting injured three others.

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Edmondson was arrested on Thursday, March 2, police said. His initial bail was set at $10 million. He has a court appearance scheduled for Friday morning. 

The charges

According to the criminal complaint, police responded to 500 Dale Street North in St. Paul for a shooting, where they found Jiles lying in a pool of blood in a parking lot on the north side of the building. He was suffering from a gunshot wound to his jaw and didn't have a pulse. 

Meanwhile, police learned Kennedy had been taken to the hospital in a Kia Soul, where he was pronounced dead. The driver of the vehicle was told not to leave, but left before police could speak with him, charges said.

Three other people who were shot in the parking lot also arrived at area hospitals. They all survived.

Police learned the people were gathered to celebrate the life of a woman named Edna Scott. Jiles had prepared most of the food for the gathering. 

"Witness one" told police the gathering was peaceful until the end of the event, the complaint states. The witness overheard an argument, possibly about working with police and snitching. The witness saw Edmondson pull out a gun and shoot Jiles "point blank."

Edmondson then shot 6-7 times from his hip at everyone in the parking lot, the witness said, including in Kennedy's direction. People then picked up Kennedy and put him in the SUV, charges allege.

The witness has known Edmondson since he was a teenager and told police Kennedy is Edmondson's cousin. The charges state, "Witness One said Edmondson didn’t care who he shot when he fired into the parking lot after killing LJ. Edmondson made eye contact with Witness One, but he didn’t shoot at Witness One."

"Witness two" also reported hearing people arguing and went to check on the situation, telling police they saw Edmondson drive up in a Kia Soul. The witness identified Edmondson as the shooter. 

"Witness three" also identified Edmondson as the shooter, noting Kennedy was walking around the parking lot looking for a man he was angry with. Jiles then went outside and pulled out a gun when he heard Kennedy had a gun. But people there told Jiles to put the gun away because everyone there was family, charges stated. 

Edmondson then parked his vehicle, got out and approached Jiles, putting his left arm around Jiles and shooting him. After Jiles fell to the ground, Edmondson fired at witness three, who ducked. The witness then saw Edmondson shoot Kennedy. The witness wasn't sure where Jiles' and Kennedy's guns had gone after they were shot. 

"Witness four" told police they tried to move Jiles back inside due to a commotion in the parking lot, but when their back was to Jiles they heard a gunshot. When they turned around, they saw Edmondson shoot a second time and Jiles drop to the ground, charges state. 

The witness said Edmondson had "crazy eyes" while holding a gun. Edmondson yelled to his mom to get in the car, and then the witness they heard shots when Kennedy dropped. 

An anonymous person then called police, telling them Edmondson was trying to go to Arizona to stay with his daughter. He allegedly told multiple people that he wasn't going back to prison, and he threatened to shoot it out with police if he was pulled over, charges said. He has since been arrested. 

Edmondson has prior felony convictions for first-degree aggravated robbery and second-degree murder. He was part of a group that targeted and robbed drug dealers, and the group killed one of the dealers, the complaint says.