Texas woman pleads guilty in Kansas fair vendors’ deaths

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Alfred “Sonny” Carpenter and Pauline Carpenter

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GREAT BEND, Kan. — A Texas woman has admitted to her role in the deaths of a couple who were killed at a Kansas fair after one suspect ordered the killings as part of a “carnival mafia” initiation.

Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt said 39-year-old Christine Tenney, of La Marque, Texas, pleaded guilty Tuesday to aggravated robbery and obstruction of justice.

Tenney was charged after the July 2018 deaths of Alfred “Sonny” Carpenter and Pauline Carpenter, both of Wichita, at the Barton County Fair in Kansas, where they were vendors. Their bodies were discovered in a national forest near Van Buren, Arkansas.

Three other people were charged with murder in their deaths. Fifty-four-year-old Michael Fowler Jr., of Sarasota, Florida, pleaded guilty in March to first-degree murder. Another man is charged with obstructing apprehension.

Investigators say there is no “carnival mafia.”

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