Soldier Love Triangle? Wife Accused of Plotting U.S. Army Husband's Murder with Alleged Lover
U.S. Army Sgt. Tyrone Hassel III was allegedly ambushed by his wife's lover on New Year's Eve
A U.S. Army sergeant is dead after his wife and her lover allegedly plotted to kill him over the holidays to be together, PEOPLE confirms.
On New Year’s Eve, 23-year-old Tyrone Hassel III left a family gathering to bring some food to his wife, Kemia Hassel, and their 1-year-old child. The couple, both on leave from active military duty, were staying at Tyrone’s father’s house for the holidays in St. Joseph Township, Mich.
But as Tyrone, a U.S. Army sergeant, walked back to his pickup truck parked in the home’s driveway, he was confronted by an assailant and fatally shot, Berrien County Prosecutor Michael Sepic said in a press release obtained by PEOPLE.
Berrien County authorities investigated several leads before receiving information from the U.S. Army base at Fort Stewart, Georgia, where the Hassels were both based.
The information eventually led authorities to uncover an alleged love-triangle and arrested Kemia and her alleged lover, Jeremy Cuellar, for Tyrone’s death.
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Cuellar is also an active duty U.S. Army soldier stationed at Fort Stewart, the press release states. He was taken into custody in Georgia, where he is from.
Investigators believe Kemia and Cuellar were having an affair and plotted to kill Tyrone to be together. Both have been charged with first-degree murder.
The Berrien County Prosecuting Attorney believes Cuellar traveled from Fort Stewart to Chicago days before the incident. There, he waited for instructions from Kemia to allegedly ambush her husband. On New Year’s Eve, Kemia allegedly gave Cuellar instructions to carry out her husband’s alleged murder.
“The motive for the two to plot Sgt. Hassel’s death may have been to continue their relationship and reap the Army’s death benefit from his murder,” Sepic said in the statement.
Tyrone Hassel’s father told local station WSBT he couldn’t believe his son’s wife meant to hurt him.
“You got to understand man, this is a person that slept in my home,” he said. “I spent two weeks with this person, after she killed my son.”
Kemia is currently behind bars in Berrien County Jail. At an arraignment on Monday, her bond was set to $2,500,000. Cuellar is currently behind bars in Georgia, awaiting extradition.
Attorney and plea information were unavailable Wednesday.