YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – On Friday, our sister station in Ohio, First News, shared the story of Chyna Carrillo, who died after she was brutally beat in New Wilmington Thursday. Investigators identified the suspect Saturday as Juan Carter Hernandez.
Hernandez died Thursday when a police officer shot him.
A local family says he’s the same man who murdered their daughter.
The family reached out to our newsroom Saturday morning. They say Hernandez spent time in jail for the death of their loved one, Kandace Hernandez.
It happened back in 2011 in North Carolina.
Hernandez was sentenced to eight to ten years in prison, but Kandace’s family said that was not long enough.
Tammy Larew, Kandace’s mother, says she was always worried Hernandez would hurt another girlfriend after killing her daughter.
Now that she’s seen news of Chyna Carrillo’s killing, she says her worst fear has come true.
“I just scream. This should not have happened. I knew it was going to happen,” Larew said.
Kandace grew up around Youngstown and began dating Hernandez here.
The couple moved to North Carolina due to his career in the military and got married.
WNCT reported back then that police had been called to their home several times for domestic disputes.
“Kandace was on the phone with my husband six minutes before she was killed, wanting a bus ticket home,” Larew said.
In July 2011, Hernandez killed Kandace in their home. In court, he pleaded guilty to second degree murder and claimed he reacted in self defense.
But Larew wanted to go to trial.
She thinks Hernandez should’ve served more than eight years in prison.
“They say there wasn’t enough evidence and they were going to get him to take a plea deal, and I did not want that,” Larew said.
She thinks a longer sentence would’ve protected Chyna and other women from Hernandez.
“A few people ask me, ‘Do you feel that you got justice now because he’s gone?’ No. I mean, he’s gone, but he still did what he did to my daughter and to Chyna,” Larew said. Mother, friend remember trans woman killed in New Wilmington attack
Our sister station in Ohio has been working to connect the two crimes.
We reached out to multiple sources throughout Lawrence County and Campbell to try and confirm that this is the same Juan Carter Hernandez.
A Pennsylvania State Trooper told us the possible connection has also been brought to their attention. They will be investigating it further.
First News has also found some assault charges linked to Juan Hernandez in Mahoning County.