Former Oklahoma police officer faces fourth trial in death of daughter’s boyfriend – News – Times Record – Arkansas News

Former Oklahoma police officer faces fourth trial in death of daughter’s boyfriend – News – Times Record – Arkansas News

OKLAHOMA CITY — A white former Oklahoma police officer will face a fourth trial in the shooting death of his daughter’s black boyfriend, a prosecutor said Monday.

Three mistrials in less than a year have been declared in the case of Shannon Kepler, who was charged in the August 2014 fatal shooting of 19-year-old Jeremey Lake in Tulsa.

Kepler doesn’t deny shooting Lake, but told investigators he acted in self-defense because he thought Lake was armed. Police found no weapon on Lake or at the scene.

Tulsa County District Attorney Steve Kunzweiler said in a statement Monday that prosecutors and the Tulsa Police Department “are in full agreement that this case should proceed with prosecution.”

“The very nature of our criminal justice system is premised upon the finality of a verdict,” Kunzweiler said. The prosecutor previously said jurors should be compelled to reach a verdict.

In Kepler’s most recent trial, held this month, jurors deadlocked 6-6 after almost three hours of deliberations.

All of Kepler’s previous trials have been overseen by District Judge Sharon Holmes. Juries in Kepler’s previous two trials, in November and February, deadlocked 11-1 and 10-2 in favor of guilt before Holmes declared mistrials after up to 12 hours of deliberations in each case.

It’s unclear why Holmes allowed the jury to deliberate much longer in the first two trials. A spokeswoman for Holmes on Monday said the judge would not comment on the case.

Kepler’s attorney, Richard O’Carroll, said he’s never heard of a case being tried four times and suggested there is political motivation behind the prosecution’s plan.

“It’s a waste of…

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