VISALIA, Calif. (KSEE/KGPE) – A Tulare County man has been found guilty of murdering a store employee and assaulting a law enforcement officer in Visalia, according to Tulare County District Attorney Tim Ward.
On Wednesday, Ward says a jury found Jeremy Kechloian guilty in the 2018 stabbing that left an employee dead outside of the former Kmart in Visalia.
Officials say on May 9, 2018, around 5:30 p.m., Kechloian entered Kmart in Visalia with a knife and that a shopper reported it to the customer service desk.
When Kechlion was escorted out of the store, authorities say Kechlion stabbed a Kmart employee twice, once in the neck and once in the chest. Officials say Kechloian then fled the scene but was quickly tracked down by officers.
Authorities say the stabbing victim died from his injuries two days later.
While he was being booked by Visalia police, Kechloian punched an officer in the face and forcefully resisted the two officers with him in the holding cell, according to officials.
On Nov. 22, 2021, the DA says Kechloian was found guilty of first-degree murder with a deadly weapon, and two counts of resisting an officer. In a separate trial on Nov. 30, 2021, Kechloian was found
guilty of felony possession of a weapon, battery upon an officer, and three counts of misdemeanor violations of damaging jail property, according to officials.
The DA’s Office said Kechloian has had other felony charges in the past, including possession of
a controlled substance and assault with a deadly weapon.
Authorities say Kechloian faces 68 years to life in prison at sentencing scheduled for Dec. 17, 2021.