A prison parolee who was arrested in Utah with triple-murderer Mauricio Johnson was sentenced this morning to three years and eight months in state prison.


Judge Kaleb Cockrum sentenced 48-year-old Von Eric Keener to the maximum three years for being an accessory after the fact. He also received eight months for failing to register as a sex offender and 180 days for parole violation. The 180 days will run concurrently.

Keener has so much credit for actual time served, along with “good time” credit, that he will likely spend about a year in prison.

Keener and Johnson were arrested in Utah on Feb. 11, 2021, the day after the 18-year-old Johnson gunned down Margarett Lee Moon and her fiance Nikki Metcalf, both 40, and Moon’s 16-year-old daughter Shelly Moon. All three were shot in the head at their home on the Bear River Rancheria.

At the time Keener was the boyfriend of Johnson’s mother, Melissa Johnson-Sanchez, who also pleaded guilty to being an accessory to the killings. Johnson-Sanchez, 43, was sentenced in October to 364 days in Humboldt County Correctional Facility. She remains in custody.

Today family members of the victims requested — as they did at Johnson-Sanchez’s sentencing — that Keener also be charged with child abuse for the trauma he caused Margarett Moon’s younger children. The kids awoke that morning to find Metcalf and Shelly Moon dead and Margarett Moon fatally injured. She died an estimated four hours after she was shot.

“I’ll never forgive him for what he did to those little Indian children,” said family friend Jewel Frank this morning. She glared at Keener, standing next to his attorney Joe Judge, and said “She (Margarett) was alive while you aided and abetted.”

It has been stated that after the killings Johnson got a car and headed east, accompanied by Keener. Johnson’s mother followed them in another vehicle until they were all arrested by the Utah Highway Patrol.

But Keener said in court this morning he was not in the car with Johnson until they reached Redding.

Deputy District Attorney Roger Rees said Keener could have reported the shootings but chose not to.

“Mr. Keener didn’t notify law enforcement that there were victims of a shooting that might need medical attention,” Rees said.

He said some family members believe Keener should be charged with not only child abuse but murder.

“We do not believe there is sufficient evidence,” the prosecutor said.

The judge told Frank and Sandra Keisner, Metcalf’s mother, that he couldn’t grant their wishes.

“The charges you are asking for can’t be charged and can’t be proven,” Cockrum said.

There was some confusion today about how much jail credit Keener has earned. Cockrum said during sentencing that Keener would receive 688 days against the three-year sentence. Defense attorney Joe Judge said outside court that the amount was 768 days.

Keener himself was perturbed with the number of credits awarded, complaining it wasn’t what he was promised. But Cockrum told him the sentencing was done and on the record. Keener is free to file an appeal.

Keener was on parole for a sex offense that occurred years ago.