Consecutive life sentences for felon who killed again

A Clayton County man charged with pistol whipping an associate beyond recognition was sentenced to two life sentences plus 20 years Tuesday for the 2004 murder.

A Fulton County jury also found Keithan Patmon, 39, guilty of two counts of armed robbery, two counts of aggravated assault, kidnapping and related gun charges.

The crimes were committed just six months after Patmon was released from a 15-year prison sentence for manslaughter and robbery, a Fulton District Attorney's Office spokeswoman said.

In the 2004 incident, Patmon had hitched a ride with victims Eric Honea and Artie Hughes, whom he knew from America’s Force Truck Driving School in Clayton County. Patmon, a former student at the school, drew a gun on the men and told them he wanted "the money," referencing $10,000 he believed Honea had deposited in his bank, according to an account provided by the D.A.

Honea told his kidnapper he could not access the funds. Patmon then forced Hughes to withdraw $200 from his account.

Patmon wanted more, ordering Hughes to withdraw a cash advance from his credit cards. At this point Hughes escaped into a nearby grocery store and told them what had happened. Honea was still being held at gunpoint, the D.A's spokeswoman said.

The next morning Honea's body was discovered in his truck behind an apartment complex off Bolton Road. Investigators recovered part of a bloody .45 caliber handgun pistol grip from the vehicle, which eventually led them to Patmon.

Before the attack, Honea and Hughes planned to start a trucking business together.