Entertainment And News

Ex-Police Officer Sentenced After Murdering Daughter's Boyfriend & Leaving Her In A Homeless Shelter

Photo: Facebook / Tulsa Police Department
Jeremy Lake, Shannon Kepler, and Lisa Kepler

A former police officer who was employed with the Tulsa Police Department in Oklahoma has finally been sentenced for a crime he committed back in 2014.

On August 5th, 2014, now-61-year-old Shannon Kepler shot and killed his “difficult” daughter’s boyfriend, Jeremy Lake, after using department records to run a background search on him.

Shannon Kepler was finally sentenced to 25 years for the murder of Jeremy Lake.

The first three trials against Kepler resulted in hung juries, meaning that the jury was unable to come to a conclusive verdict and the judge was unable to give sentencing as a result.

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The fourth trial, however, Kepler was found guilty and was sentenced to 15 years in prison, but the Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals overturned that conviction based on a U.S. Supreme Court ruling that found that Oklahoma lacks jurisdiction for crimes that happen on tribal reservations in which the defendants or victims are tribal citizens.

A year ago, in the fifth trial for Lake's 2014 murder, a federal jury found Kepler guilty of his crime, and on January 7th, 2022, U.S. District Judge Gregory K. Frizzell sentenced Kepler to 25 years in federal prison followed by three years of supervised release.

“Kepler, at the time, was sworn to uphold the law but instead made a series of decisions that led to the young man's murder,” U.S. Attorney Clint Johnson said after Friday's sentencing.

“Today's 25-year sentence provides a measure of justice to Mr. Lake's family, though I know their healing continues.”

Kepler shot and killed Jeremy Lake shortly after finding out he was dating his daughter.

In 2014, Kepler and his wife Gina, were struggling with their adopted daughter, Lisa, so they decided to drop her off at a homeless shelter shortly after her 18th birthday — leaving her with nothing but the clothes on her back, according to a statement from the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Northern District of Oklahoma.

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However, when Kepler managed to log into his daughter’s Facebook account, he noticed that her relationship status had changed from “single,” to being in a relationship with Lake who was working at the shelter as a volunteer.

As an active duty police officer, he asked a records clerk to run a background check on Lake where he discovered that the 19-year-old was the victim of child abuse at a very young age, and was also tried as a juvenile for pushing a social services worker, but wasn’t convicted.

Keplet soon plotted to kill his daughter's boyfriend.

“The day of the crime,” the U.S. Attorney's Office statement said, “Kepler changed into dark clothing, used his wife's SUV, then traveled after dark to Lake's last known address with a loaded revolver in the waistband of his pants.”

Upon arriving, Kepler found his daughter and Lake walking together with some of their friends and approached them, attempting to talk to his daughter.

When she turned him away and entered the home, Lake tried to introduce himself but Kepler pulled out the revolver instead and shot twice, killing Lake “almost immediately,” U.S. Attorney Clint Johnson said in a statement announcing the sentence.

Kepler fired three more shots in the direction of the witnesses, Lake’s friend Josh Mills, Lake’s 13-year-old brother Michael Hamilton, and Kepler’s own daughter, Lisa.

He fled the scene, only to turn himself in eventually, knowing that his fellow Tulsa Police officers would be on the search for him.

Kepler testified that he acted in self-defense after Lake “got the jump on him,” even though no other gun was ever found on the scene.

As the Lake family heals, this sentencing likely means that Kepler will spend the rest of his life in prison, and will finally see justice for the crime he committed all those years ago.

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Isaac Serna-Diez is a writer who focuses on entertainment and news, social justice, and politics. Follow him on Twitter here.

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