Palm Coast, FL – A Flagler County Sheriff’s Office (FCSO) investigation into the early-April death of a 25-year-old Palm Coast woman has lead to the arrest of her husband on second-degree murder charges.
At around 4 PM on Friday, April 27, FCSO deputies and detectives arrested 36-year-old Keith Johansen for second-degree murder with a weapon following a thorough investigation after his wife, Brandi Celenza, was found deceased at their Felter Lane residence on April 7. Earlier reporting on this story can be found here.
On April 9, an autopsy was performed to rule out accidental death and suicide as a cause of death. Based on the autopsy, the Medical Examiner ruled Celenza’s death as a homicide.
FCSO investigators found that Celenza and Johansen’s home has an elaborate home security system. A search warrant was obtained for the footage from the company, however, investigators indicated that the company was initially unresponsive and did not cooperate with the investigation at first. According to the FCSO, this caused a major delay in the case.
The footage revealed a great disparity between what actually happened and what Johansen told 9-1-1 dispatchers and deputies at the scene. Johansen said he was in the shower while he thought he heard Celenza accidentally shoot herself. One of the inconsistencies occurs while Johansen was on the phone with 911. He told 911 operators that he was checking the body for injuries but video surveillance shows that he was actually removing narcotics from the home instead.
Johanson was subsequently arrested and charged with knowingly shooting Celenza with a 9mm handgun once in the center of her chest and once in her right breast. He was booked into the Flagler County Detention Facility where he will be held without bond.
(Johansen’s mugshot courtesy FCSO)
“We suspected from the start of this investigation that this was a murder but time was on our side with this case and we took it slowly in order to build the strongest case possible,” said Flagler County Sheriff Rick Staly. “It took time for FDLE to analyze the forensic evidence and to obtain electronically stored evidence through out-of-state search warrants. Our deputies and detectives did a phenomenal job in working this case from start to finish and I am very proud of them. The community should be very proud of our capable team and know that we have the ability to solve intricate and difficult cases.”
“Unfortunately this is another domestic homicide in our county,” said Staly. “A young woman and mother lost her life, and a young son lost his mother, because in a moment of rage her husband thought violence was the answer. I hope that he will spend the rest of his life in prison. Violence is never the answer.”
According to the FCSO, Johansen was arrested in Flagler County in 2008 for driving without a valid license. Johansen also had a protection against domestic violence order from a previous relationship.
Photo courtesy FCSO.
Copyright Southern Stone Communications 2018.