FL v. WARREN: Killer Clown Murder Trial

Posted at 9:23 AM, April 14, 2020 and last updated 12:36 PM, October 14, 2022

By Ivy Brown

PALM BEACH COUNTY, Fla. (Court TV) – An alleged ‘killer clown’ is facing trial for a cold case murder that happened 32 years ago.

Sheila Keen Warren is accused of shooting 40-year-old Marlene Warren on her doorstep in Wellington, Florida, on May 26, 1990.


That day, Marlene was in her kitchen with her 22-year-old son, Joseph Ahrens, and several of his friends when they saw a white Chrysler LeBaron park in the driveway, according to authorities. A person dressed as a clown then exited the vehicle carrying a floral arrangement and balloons.

When Marlene answered the door, witnesses said they heard a gunshot before the suspect “calmly walked back to the LeBaron and drove away.” Marlene died two days later. Her case ultimately went cold until 2014.

Marlene Warren was fatally shot in the face by a suspect who was dressed as a clown in May 1990. (Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office)

That year, investigators learned once-suspect Sheila Keen Warren had married Marlene’s widow, Michael, in 2002. At the time of Marlene’s murder, Sheila reportedly worked for Michael.

During their investigation, new DNA analysis reportedly linked Sheila to the murder, and three years later in 2017, she was arrested and charged with First-Degree Murder.

The defendant was initially facing the death penalty, however, prosecutors announced they would not pursue it in February 2020, according to court documents.

Sheila Keen Warren was initially scheduled to go to trial in May 2020, but a series of delays, including the COVID-19 pandemic, has postponed her trial.

The latest delay was announced Oct. 14, a week before jury selection was scheduled to begin. A new trial date has not been set.