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Man accused of murdering West Jordan couple makes first court appearance

Albert Enoch Johnson, 31, is suspected of killing Tony and Katherine Butterfield
Tony and Katherine Butterfield
Posted at 7:33 AM, May 08, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-08 11:36:27-04

SALT LAKE CITY — The man accused of killing Tony and Katherine Butterfield of West Jordan last month made his initial court appearance Friday morning.

Albert Enoch Johnson, 31, faces 10 felony charges in connection with the murders.

Johnson appeared via a video feed from the Salt Lake County Metro Jail. During his brief appearance, a judge read the 10 charges against him.

“This is one of those cases that sticks with you,” said Salt Lake County District Attorney, Sim Gill.

According to a probable cause statement, Johnson admitted to killing the Butterfields on April 18 after kicking in their door in an attempt to "get money." He left with $20 and two cell phones, the statement said.

Johnson told investigators he knew the victims, and he wore a mask during the home invasion, but took it off when he returned to his car, At that point, he realized he had left his keys behind and returned to the Butterfields' home, according to the statement.

Tony Butterfield was standing in the doorway and recognized Johnson as he approached, the statement said.

"Tony then started stabbing Johnson to prevent him from coming back into the house. Johnson said it was so painful that he shot Tony. Katherine began screaming and Johnson thought he saw a neighbor nearby, so Johnson shot Katherine," the statement said. "Johnson then went into the home and retrieved his keys.

Johnson told investigators he went back to his apartment, changed his clothes and left for California. US Marshals, acting on information from a witness, took Johnson into custody near Stockton, California four days later.

He faces two counts of criminal homicide/aggravated murder, two counts of aggravated murder and two counts of aggravated kidnapping, one count of aggravated burglary, two counts of possession of a firearm by a restricted person, and one count of obstructing justice in connection with the Butterfields' deaths.

Johnson is due back in court on May 29.

The Butterfields leave behind three young children, ages four, two and six months.