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Details emerge in Panama City Beach murder-suicide

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PANAMA CITY BEACH — A broken marriage allegedly led to the murder of two and suicide of another at the Hampton Inn and Suites this weekend.

Police say Mark Stokes, 37 of Enterprise Ala., killed his wife Amanda Stokes, 28 of Enterprise, and her “new acquaintance” Kenneth Krause, 30 of Bonifay, before turning the weapon on himself.

The husband and wife had allegedly separated in the weeks leading up to the slaying and Mark Stokes had moved out of the family home, according to the a Panama City Beach Police press release.

Both Stokes were planning on attending the Thunder Beach Motorcycle Rally and had rented a home in Panama City Beach with friends for the occasion, but due to the separation Amanda Stokes has rented a room at Hampton Inn with Krause, according to the release.

Mark and Amanda Stokes owned a business together and were both in active duty with the Army National Guard in Fort Rucker, Al.

The investigation revealed Mark Stokes had obtained a key to Amanda’s hotel room and police say he entered with a firearm in the early morning. A maintenance worker discovered the three individuals in Room 222, according to the release.

UPDATE: The Husband obtained a key to the room from the front desk. The shooting happened around 3a or 4a.

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Okay, we're almost a week in and there are no further details?

Something is up!

Has anyone heard any more details?

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UPDATED: This appeared this week in the Dothan Eagle.




A current relationship and a former relationship appeared to come together with deadly consequences over the weekend in an apparent murder-suicide involving Wiregrass residents in Panama City Beach.

The Panama City Beach Police Department is still investigating the incident that occurred Saturday morning on Front Beach Road that resulted in the death of three people.

Kenneth Krause, 30, of Bonifay, Florida; Amanda Stokes, 28, and Mark Stokes, 37, of Enterprise, were found shot to death in a hotel room at the Hampton Inn and Suites room 222 on Front Beach Road.


Earlier social media posts appeared to indicate Amanda Stokes had recently ended a relationship and entered into another. A photo of Amanda Stokes and Krause together at Thunder Beach in Panama City Beach appeared on Facebook May 4. Although separated, the Stokeses owned a business together and were both active duty in the Army National Guard.

According to Panama City Beach Police Lt. Jason Jones, the murder-suicide occurred early Saturday morning.

Law enforcement confirmed that before the couple's separation, the two previously rented a home in Panama City Beach for their employees, friends and family to attend Thunder Beach. However, due to the separation, Amanda Stokes was staying in a hotel. Police believe Mark Stokes traveled to the Hampton Inn and Suites and obtained a room key to Amanda Stokes' room, armed with a firearm. Once inside the room, police believe Mark Stokes shot Krause and Amanda Stokes before shooting himself.

Jones said although current evidence points to murder-suicide, the case is not closed.

“At this time the investigation is ongoing,” Jones said. “The bodies have been transported to the medical examiner’s office at this time.”



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