Texas police chief talks about arrest of Newton double murder suspect

Posted: Updated:
HUTTO, Texas (KAKE) -

There's no word yet on when the suspected killer of a Newton mother and her young daughter will be returned to Kansas to face charges.

Keith Hawkins remains behind bars near Austin, Texas. He's suspected in the deaths of 24-year-old Alyssa Runyon and 4-year-old Zaylynn Paz, whose bodies were found late Tuesday morning.

On a busy stretch of highway in the Texas town of Hutto is where Hawkins' run from the law came to an end at around 5:30 p.m. Tuesday. 

"Everything that we do in law enforcement on high speed pursuit fell into the place," said Hutto Police Chief Byron Franklin.

Chief Franklin said his officers were waiting for Hawkins, who was spotted near his sister's home in another town just a few miles down the road.

"Police knew they needed to stop Hawkins, so they threw out what are known as stop sticks. Once he rode over them, his tires blew out.

Hawkins then went off the road, his car going airborne. He was injured and unable to keep running. 

"The coordinated effort law enforcement was outstanding; everything was done perfectly," Franklin said. 

Back in Kansas, Newton police have not yet discussed a motive for the murders that have touched a community hundreds of miles away.

"Our hearts go out to the people of Newton."

Suspect arrested after mother, 4-year-old daughter killed in Newton

A criminal complaint dated June 22, 2017, alleges that failed to register as a sex offender within three days of coming to Harvey County four months ago. A background check shows Hawkins was wanted for failure to appear in court.

Hawkins has a prior juvenile conviction of aggravated indecent liberties with a child in McPherson County. Records of that crime are sealed. 

Check out these photos from across KAKEland snapped by our viewers, staff and local officials. Do you have a photo to share with us? Email it to news@kake.com.


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