Police & Fire

Third murder suspect turns himself in to sheriff’s office

Posted on October 29th, 2021 By:

The third suspect in a Port Orchard murder last week has been arrested.

At 3:30 a.m. Friday, Eli Gregory turned himself in to Pierce County Sheriff’s Office deputies. Gregory, 18, of Gig Harbor, was arrested without incident and turned over to the Kitsap County Sheriff’s Office. He is cooperating with detectives, according to a social media post from the Kitsap sheriff’s office

Detectives escort Eli Gregory after he turned himself in

Kitsap County sheriff’s detectives escort murder suspect Eli Gregory after he turned himself in. Photo courtesy of Kitsap County Sheriff's Office

Kitsap County prosecutors had charged Gregory with accomplice to first-degree murder Monday in connection with the death of 19-year-old Tyrone Sero of Port Orchard. Bail was set at $1 million.

Kitsap County sheriff’s detectives believe that Gregory was in a Toyota 4Runner when Sero was seen leaving an AM/PM in Port Orchard early last Wednesday, Oct. 20, and helped dispose of Sero’s remains near Matlock in Mason County. Sero was allegedly shot while selling a pound of marijuana to the suspects.

Murder suspect Eli Gregory

Eli Gregory Photo courtesy of Kitsap County Sheriff's Office

Last Thursday evening, Oct. 21, Kannon Stephens, 19, of Gig Harbor turned himself in at the Kitsap County Sheriff’s Office in Port Orchard and confessed to shooting and killing Sero, according to charging documents. Karlen Talent, 20, of Port Orchard, was arrested Thursday night at the Burley Store in South Kitsap. They pleaded not guilty in Kitsap Superior Court Friday afternoon, Oct. 22. They are in Kitsap County Jail on $1 million bail, Stephens for Murder 1 and Talent for accomplice to Murder 1.

Stephens told detectives he had been hiding in the back of the SUV when Sero got into the back seat, with Talent driving and Gregory in the front passenger seat, though investigators alleged Sero got into the front seat. A friend who had driven Sero to the mini-mart said it appeared Sero was struggling with somebody and got pulled into the back. He said he heard a noise like a firework exploding as the SUV sped out of the parking lot.

In Stephens’ version of events, he said that Sero, once inside the Toyota, pulled a gun and demanded the money for the marijuana. Stephens said he heard a commotion and a gunshot, according to detectives, and that he believed Sero had shot his friend so Stephens shot Sero in the back of the head.

The three then drove to Mason County and burned Sero’s body, according to Stephens’ account in charging documents.