St. Maarten Murders: "It's just unfathomable"


MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C. (WCIV) - When Jon Osborne heard about the murders of Michael and Thelma King, he says if felt like losing members of his family.

"Devastated. Shocked," said Osborne, manager of Waters Edge Restaurant on Shem Creek. "You know I maintained my composure and I lost control when I got home."

Osborne says Michael and Thelma often spent time at Waters Edge and were well known.

"The Kings were just really nice people that came in two or three times a month if they were in town. Sometimes, more than that if they had more time. But they were very active in the community."

Police say Michael and Thelma were stabbed and murdered in their St. Maarten condo Friday.

The suspect has only been identified by his initials, MKJ.

Michael and Thelma's family released this statement Tuesday:

"We are overwhelmed with the outpouring of support we've received over the past few days and want to express our sincere appreciation to everyone who has reached out to us with phone calls, emails, notes, flowers, meals and, most importantly, prayers. We know that Mike and Thelma touched the lives of so many people. We are truly grateful for the support and expressions of sympathy. We ask that you continue to pray for our family in the days ahead, and we ask the media to respectfully grant us privacy and time to grieve."

Osborne says Michael was a knowledgeable business man.

"One thing with Mike, we would always talk about the restaurant business, because he was also in the restaurant business as well in Columbia and, a few restaurants in St. Maarten. We'd talk about the economy."

Osborne says the couple would enjoy drinks with friends on the cabana at Waters Edge.

"Thelma would always come up and say 'Hey Jon, how are you?' And, hug me and put a kiss on my cheek."

Osborne says he and others who knew the Kings are struggling to wrap their heads around the crime.

"Completely devastated. I think it's the one common word that every one is using.{} This is just devastating," Osborne said. "To have this tragedy happen to them, it's just unfathomable. No one can understand why this happened."

Police have arrested a suspect. The 29-year-old male is set to go through court Tuesday.

Then, a judge will decide if there's enough evidence to hold him.