38-year-old found guilty of killing a man over a $20 debt

Kenneth Joel McKinnis, 38, was found guilty of second-degree murder Tuesday in Hennepin County Court.

According to court documents, McKinnis fatally shot 37-year-old Curtis Leroy Johnson on Sept. 26, 2023 in Minneapolis’ Phillips neighborhood.

As previously reported, witnesses told authorities Johnson owed McKinnis $20, and that the two had gotten into a fight since Johnson was unable to pay McKinnis back. Witnesses also said they heard McKinnis threaten to shoot Johnson if he didn’t have the money, court documents state.

Surveillance video near the intersection of 16th Avenue South and East 25th Street showed a stolen pickup truck arrive at the tent encampment, where Johnson was, just before the shooting. After the gunshot was heard, a man ran up to the truck, got in the back passenger-side seat and the truck took off.

The two men in the truck were later identified by authorities, with the other unnamed occupant confirming that he had given McKinnis a ride to the encampment, saw him enter a tent and take a gun from the seat of the truck and put it in his waistband when he got back to his home.

McKinnis’ sentencing date is set for Oct. 5. He faces up to 40 years in prison.