Sentencing in 12-year-old Midvale homicide case set for Thursday

Victoria Big Crow Clown (left) and Jerrah Jean Whipple Santos-Ramirez (right). Photos Courtesy: Salt Lake County

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah, March 3, 2020 (Gephardt Daily) — Unified police said Tuesday the sentencing in a 12-year-old cold case homicide will take place Thursday.

The two women arrested and convicted of the December 2008 murder of Lester Lloyd Janise, 62, in Midvale, will be sentenced at the Matheson Courthouse at 1:30 p.m., said a news release from Unified Police Department.

“Lester was found deceased in his apartment in January 2009, with two belts around his neck,” the news release said. “The case went cold until 2014 when Unified Police Department began re-investigating the case. There was a break in the case in October 2018, when Victoria Big Crow Clown confessed to investigators.”

Sisters Clown and Jerrah Jean Whipple Santos-Ramirez were both charged with murder, aggravated robbery and obstructing justice.

Santos-Ramirez was arrested in Nevada and Clown was arrested in Georgia. Both women were extradited to Salt Lake County. The women both pleaded guilty and are now being sentenced.

A previous statement by UPD said Janise, a respected spiritual leader in the Native American community and a Vietnam veteran, was found dead in his Midvale apartment, at 7895 South Candlestick Lane, the afternoon of Jan. 13, 2009.

The cause of death was listed as ligature strangulation.

Police say Janise was living alone, but had recently returned from visiting South Dakota and had company from out of state prior to his death.

Janise’s 2002 white Ford Windstar mini-van and other valuables were missing at the time his body was discovered.

Investigators ultimately determined Janise had been killed a couple of weeks prior to being found.

Gephardt Daily will have more on this developing story as information is made available.

Lester Lloyd Janise. Photo: Unified Police Department

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