Tulsa County DA Moving Forward With 4th Trial Against Shannon Kepler
TULSA COUNTY, Oklahoma - The Tulsa County District Attorney announced plans to move forward with a fourth trial against Shannon Kepler.
Tulsa County DA Steve Kunzweiler released a statement Monday saying, “After consultation with the Tulsa Police Department, we are in full agreement that this case should proceed with prosecution. As I have stated previously, the very nature of our criminal justice system is premised upon the finality of a verdict. Mr. Kepler deserves that and so does Jeremey Lake’s family. As with all individuals who are charged with a crime, the presumption of innocence remains until a judge or jury determines otherwise.”
The third trial ended with a hung jury on July 7th after less than three hours of deliberations. Jurors said they were split down the middle.
This was the first time the jury had the option to consider a lesser charge of manslaughter, but because they could not even reach a majority on the murder charge, they could not consider the lesser charge.
Kepler, a former Tulsa Police officer, is accused of shooting and killing his daughter Lisa's boyfriend Jeremey Lake in 2014.
Lisa Kepler met Lake at a homeless shelter and was walking with him August 5th, 2014, when her father pulled up in an SUV. He fired shots from the vehicle, hitting Lake twice.
Shannon Kepler admits to firing the shots but claims it was in self defense. The DA's office argued that all the neighbors who were at the scene immediately after Lake was shot gave consistent testimonies that he was unarmed and that Kepler is the only one saying there was a gun.
The first two trials also ended in mistrials.