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Deputies release name of Tampa mother and son killed in weekend double homicide

Tyrone Terell Johnson, 42, faces charges of first- and second-degree murder in the deaths of a 34-year-old Stephanie Willis and 10-year-old boy Ricky Willis following an altercation at 4302 Mariners Cove Ct., Apt. 104, in Tampa on Sunday. [LUIS SANTANA/Times; Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office]
Tyrone Terell Johnson, 42, faces charges of first- and second-degree murder in the deaths of a 34-year-old Stephanie Willis and 10-year-old boy Ricky Willis following an altercation at 4302 Mariners Cove Ct., Apt. 104, in Tampa on Sunday. [LUIS SANTANA/Times; Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office]
Published Oct. 23, 2018

TAMPA — Deputies have released the names of the mother and her 10-year-old son who were fatally shot in a double homicide on Sunday.

Stephanie Ann Willis, 34, and son Ricky Willis were killed in their home at Mariner's Cove apartments by Willis' live-in boyfriend, Tyrone Terell Johnson, the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office said Tuesday.

Johnson, 42, has been charged with first-degree felony murder, second-degree murder, aggravated child abuse and shooting into or within a building. He was being held without bail in the county jail.

Johnson called 911 at 6:47 p.m. Sunday and said he shot two people "because he was being attacked," an arrest report says. Deputies arrived at 4302 Mariners Cove Court, Apt. 104, and found Stephanie Willis and Ricky Willis dead from apparent gunshot wounds.

Johnson told deputies he and Stephanie Willis got into an argument when he wanted to change the channel to watch a football game. Johnson said he went to the master bedroom to pack his belongings, the report says. He told investigators he has trouble walking because he recently had surgery on a foot injured during his time in the military.

Johnson told deputies Stephanie Willis came into the bedroom and started to berate him, the report says. Johnson said he contacted his father by Facebook messenger to pick him up the next morning. At that point, Johnson told investigators, he was on a knee roller and Stephanie Willis began "tussling" at his back, pushing him off. He said Willis pushed him so he sat down on the floor next to the bed. Ricky Willis then approached and accused him of hitting his mother, Johnson told investigators. He pushed the boy, armed himself with a Glock 22 .40-caliber handgun, and fired at Stephanie Willis, he told investigators. She had a PlayStation game console in her hands at the time, the report says.

Ricky Willis left the bedroom when the gunfire began, Johnson said. The boy returned and Johnson began shooting at him, the report says.

Johnson said all the shots were fired in the master bedroom, but investigators found evidence of gunfire in the boy's bedroom and blood underneath the boy's bed. Confronted with that evidence, Johnson did not change his statement.

The report says Johnson had lived with Stephanie Willis for about a year.

Military records show Johnson served in the Marine Corps from 1994 to 1998 and the Army from 1998 to 2002.

Contact Tony Marrero at or (813) 226-3374. Follow @tmarrerotimes.


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