They killed him because they were bored.
That’s the testimony in the tragic case of Christopher Lane, 22, who was killed in a small town in Oklahoma when he was there visiting his girlfriend. The last of the defendants in the case has finally been sentenced to 25 years in prison, but he’ll probably only serve half that time.
According to a New York Daily News report, James Francis Edwards, Jr., now 18, was one of four teens sentenced for killing Lane in a drive-by shooting Aug. 16, 2013 as he was jogging in Duncan, Oklahoma.
In September, Edwards pleaded guilty to being an accessory to Lane’s murder. He is expected to serve less than half of his 25-year sentence after 10 years of it was suspended. Edwards will also be credited for the close to three years he spent in prison during his trial, according to the report.
Edwards’ initial charge of first degree murder was reduced after he agreed to testify against his three friends; Odesse John David Barnes, Michael DeWayne Jones, and Chancey Allen Luna. According to prosecutors, Lane, of Melbourne, Australia, was visiting his girlfriend in the town of Duncan, about 80 miles southwest of Oklahoma City, and went out for a jog when the four boys drove past in their car.
The teens told police that they had been bored and only meant to scare Lane, who was on a baseball scholarship at East Central University in Ada, Okla., when Luna struck him with a single bullet through his back. The teens then sped off and left Lane to die, police said.
Barnes was sentenced to 12 years in prison, Jones was sentenced to life in prison, and Luna was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.
Al Hoch, Edwards’ defense attorney, maintained that his client should not receive a lengthy prison sentence.
“He just happened to get in a car with some people that he shouldn’t have,” Hoch said before the sentencing. “My suggestion is five years with a long suspension to make sure he stays out of trouble.”
Edwards, who admitted during the trial that he called a friend from jail and asked him to hide the gun used in the crime, testified that he regretted his actions and the intent was not to kill Lane.
“The reason why I did it, I was put in a predicament I was never put on before,” he said. “I was honestly scared. I’m sorry for everything that happened. I didn’t get in that car to kill (Lane.) I’m sorry and I show remorse. Regardless of what they say, I was a dumb 15-year-old. I’m a grown man now,” he said.