TOPEKA (KSNT) – The man convicted in the 2017 shooting death of Kianna Hodge was sentenced in Shawnee County District Court Thursday.
According to Shawnee County District Attorney Mike Kagay, Javon Amond Smith was sentenced to 240 months, or 20 years, in prison.
At 11:41 p.m. on March 4, 2017, officers were sent to the area of Southeast Bellview Avenue and Southeast 23rd Street in response to reported gunshots. Shortly after arriving, officers were also called to the Reser’s plant near Southeast 6th Avenue and Southeast Deer Creek Trafficway in response to two shooting victims arriving at that location in a gold Ford Focus. One of the people in the Focus, Kianna Hodge, died as a result of her gunshot wounds. Law enforcement found a second vehicle, a Chevy Traverse, carrying three more shooting victims later in the evening, according to the press release.
A subsequent investigation revealed that people in both vehicles had been shot from the same incident. A suspect on foot had fired into both vehicles as they passed through the intersection of Southeast Bellview Avenue and Southeast 23rd Street. Officers found a total of 53 shell casings at the intersection which were all 7.62 caliber.
Following a three-year investigation, in 2020 a new development was found during a cold case review meeting between Topeka Police Homicide Detectives, the DA’s Cold Case investigator, the DA and senior prosecutors from his office. Officers finalized the case and charges were filed in November of 2020.
Smith, who was a juvenile when the incident happened, was first charged in Juvenile Court but was waived to adult status. He entered a plea in October of 2021 to charges of murder in the second degree and criminal discharge of a firearm into an occupied vehicle.