District Attorney to move forward with 4th murder trial for former Tulsa cop

Shannon Kepler, charged of first-degree murder, at the Tulsa County Courthouse. (KTUL)

After three mistrials, the Tulsa County District Attorney's Office will move ahead with a fourth murder trial for former Tulsa Police Officer Shannon Kepler.

District Attorney Steve Kunzweiler made the decision after consulting the Tulsa Police Department, according to a statement from the DA's Office.

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 Jeremy 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.

Kepler was charged with murder after shooting and killing 19-year-old Jeremey Lake in 2014. Lake was the boyfriend of Kepler's daughter, Lisa.

The defense argued that Kepler shot Lake in self-defense, while prosecutors argued that Kepler shot and killed Lake while Lake was trying to protect himself. Lisa Kepler testified that her father also shot at her during the confrontation.

Though they were allowed to consider the lesser charge of manslaughter, the third jury Kepler faced deliberated for only two and a half hours before coming back deadlocked.

Kepler is scheduled for a status hearing Aug. 1.

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