Shannon Kepler considered 'high-risk inmate'

Posted at 6:35 PM, Oct 19, 2017
and last updated 2017-10-20 12:03:43-04

TULSA -- Shannon Kepler is considered a "high-risk inmate" at the Tulsa County Jail. 

A spokeswoman for the facility said because he is a former police officer, Kepler is not being mixed with the general population for his safety.

Kepler was found guilty of first-degree manslaughter late Wednesday night and the jury recommended 15 years in prison. He shot and killed his daughter's boyfriend, Jeremey Lake, in August of 2014. He claimed it was out of self defense. 

His case went to trial three times and ended in a mistrial each time. 

The jury deliberated for about six hours before reaching a conclusion. Kepler was immediately handcuffed and taken to jail. 

Lake's father said he is glad a conclusion was reached. 

"It is partial closure," Carl Morse said. "Finally, this is resolved and we don't have to do this anymore and everything will go on." 

Morse said the outcome shows that people of all walks of life can get justice. In this case, justice his family and son deserved. 

Kepler's family cried in the courtroom when the verdict was reached. 

Defense attorney Richard O'Carroll said it was a hard time for him after learning the guilty verdict. He said if you take enough shots at someone, they are going to hit you. 

"My heart goes out to the Kepler family and I just don't feel like the process was fair in the final analysis," O'Carroll said. 

"It's simply a prosecution for someone who killed another human being," Steve Kunzweiler, Tulsa's District Attorney, said. 

O'Carroll said the state made the case about race and called it "very political." 

"Was Shannon the scape goat?" O'Carroll asked. "There are more Black African Americans per capita in the state of Oklahoma than any other state in the Union and this is going to be the Bandaid they put on top of it? It's a sham." 

"Anybody who has dealt with Mr. O'Carroll totally understands everything that comes out of his mouth," Kunzweiler said. "It's unpredictable no matter what. He is going to look at the sun and say 'That is not the sun that is up in the sky.' He is going to tell you the sky is grey when the sky is blue." 

Kunzweiler said the fact that his office tried the case four times to get a verdict should send a message that they are going to pursue justice. 

The defense said they plan to file an appeal. 

Kepler will be held in the Tulsa County Jail until his sentencing at Nov. 20. 

Stay in touch with us anytime, anywhere.

Download our free app for Apple and Android and Kindle devices.

Sign up for newsletters emailed to your inbox. Select from these options: Breaking News, Severe Weather, School Closings, Daily Headlines and Daily Forecasts.

Follow us on Twitter

Like us on Facebook