A Pontotoc, Mississippi, woman who aspired to be like Bonnie Parker of “Bonnie and Clyde” fame has pleaded guilty to participating in a 2008 robbery that resulted in the murder of a truck driver at a rest stop north of Camden Point. Dana K. Tutor, 42, was found guilty in Platte County Circuit Court on May 30 of first degree robbery and second degree murder.
The robbery and murder were the culmination of a cross-country crime spree by Tutor and her boyfriend, John Hughes. During the spree, the two talked about getting “Bonnie and Clyde” tattoos as a tribute to the notorious outlaws.
Hughes, a gang member and the man who pulled the trigger, was previously convicted of first degree murder. He was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.
Platte County Prosecuting Attorney Eric Zahnd said, “We are pleased to finally deliver justice for the family of Valentin Kirilchuk. There is no doubt he would be alive today if the defendant had not lured him to his death.”
Prosecutors showed Tutor approached multiple truck drivers at the rest area on I-29 north at mile marker 27 near Dearborn on September 8, 2008. She tried to convince them to come with her into the rest stop building, where Hughes laid in wait. She pretended that she needed money for diapers and food for a baby.
Valentin Kirilchuk, an immigrant from Ukraine, followed the defendant into the building, possibly with the intention of helping the baby who Tutor said “needed food.” Once Kirilchuk was inside the building, Hughes robbed him, and shot him through the head.
After the robbery and murder, Tutor, who by her own admission was highly intoxicated, drove the getaway car away from the murder scene. A witness in the car described Tutor laughing about the fact that Hughes had killed a man.
Hours later, Hughes was arrested in York, Nebraska, by a Nebraska State Trooper for a traffic violation and driving under the influence. Inside the vehicle, troopers found the murder weapon, ammunition, and property belonging to another murder victim from Ohio.
Tutor’s fingerprints were found on the window of Kirilchuk’s truck. She was also a potential contributor to DNA that was recovered from the passenger side mirror of Kirilchuk’s truck and the murder weapon.
Zahnd said, “This defendant wanted to be like Bonnie and Clyde, and she was. Just like Bonnie and Clyde, she and her boyfriend John Hughes are robbers and murderers.”
Pursuant to a plea agreement, the defendant faces up to 20 years in prison for her crimes. She is scheduled to be sentenced on July 27 at 10:00 a.m.
The case was investigated by the Missouri State Highway Patrol. It was personally prosecuted by Zahnd and assistant prosecuting attorneys Mark Gibson, Myles Perry, Chris Seufert.
A photo of Tutor is above. If you need additional information, please contact Tanya Faherty, our office’s media liaison.