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Mother, father and aunt of Cape murder suspect arrested

All three related to Christopher Horne, Jr., the second teen arrested in March killing of Kayla Rincon-Miller

By Staff | May 10, 2024

Shanice Stewart

The Cape Coral Police Department say they have arrested the mother and father of Christopher Horne Jr., the second teen arrested during the murder investigation of 15-year-old Kayla Rincon-Miller.

Between May 9 and 10, Christopher D. Horne, 39, and Shanice Stewart, 36, Horne, Jr.’s parents, and his aunt, Varaka Stewart, were all arrested and charged with threatening, tampering with, and coercing a witness in the investigation of Kayla’s murder.

Cape Coral Police Department’s Violent Crimes Unit detectives say the victim reported that the day after the March 17 murder of Kayla and the day before the arrest of Thomas Stein, the first teen murder suspect; Horne Jr. and his parents came to the victim’s home. According to the police, the parents told the victim that Horne Jr., known as “Buster,” and Stein were involved with Kayla’s murder. They told the victim to follow them and to bring along Stein.

Police say the victim and Stein said they feared for their lives and felt they had no choice but to follow them to the area of Gator Circle in Cape Coral. It was there that the victim says she and Stein were “threatened to keep quiet and not cooperate with law enforcement” while Buster’s father, at one point, “brandished a pistol.”

Police also say the victim said they were also threatened by another black female who was at the location when they arrived. That female was later identified as Varaka Stewart, 38, the sister of Shanice Stewart and Buster’s aunt.

Christopher D. Horne

The victim told police that they were threatened repeatedly that if they did not comply and stay silent, they would be killed.

The next day, March 19, detectives arrested Stein. The victim reports that Shanice and Varaka Stewart came to her house and again told the victim to keep quiet and keep Stein quiet. During this meeting, the victim said she was “promised money to keep quiet.”

Between March 25 and April 17, the victim says she received a number of phone calls, during which the female caller, believed to be Shanice Stewart, “implored the victim to keep quiet and not to cooperate with law enforcement and assure that Stein did the same.”

The victim says the caller threatened and intimidated her, indicating that she, Shanice Stewart, “had people on the inside and the outside that could get to them.” During one call, the victim says the caller thanked her “for protecting her ‘baby.'”

On April 17, Buster was arrested for the murder of Kayla Rincon Miller, and later that day, the victim told police she received a call from the same person who stated, “‘they got my son’ and that she was not playing games.”

Varaka Stewart

Christopher D. Horne, Shanice Stewart and Varaka Stewart are charged with one count each of tampering with a witness, a first-degree felony.

Cape Police say the case was developed and investigated to protect the witness in the murder investigation of Kayla Rincon-Miller. They say the department was assisted by The Florida Caribbean Regional Fugitive Task Force – Fort Myers Office, who were crucial in locating and arresting all the suspects.

“We would also like to thank the Lee County Sheriff’s Office, in conjunction with the State Attorney’s Office,” the police reported.

Christopher D. "Buster" Horne, Jr.

Thomas Roy Stein

Kayla Rincon-Miller, 15, died March 17 after she was shot in what police say was an ambush attempted robbery. PHOTO PROVIDED BY THE CAPE CORAL POLICE DEPARTMENT