Oklahoma Teen Convicted in Drive-by Shooting of Australian Baseball Player
An Oklahoma teen will spend the rest of his life in prison after he was convicted of first-degree murder this week for shooting and killing a jogger in 2013 – a drive-by, an accomplice has said, that was carried out because the teens were bored.
Chancey Allen Luna was found guilty in Stephens County, Oklahoma, of the murder charge Friday and the jury recommended life without the possibility of parole, PEOPLE has confirmed.
Formal sentencing will follow in June, according to CNN.
Police have said that Luna, then 16, was in a car with other teens and that he fatally fired on 22-year-old Christopher Lane while he was out jogging.
Lane, an Australian baseball player about to begin his senior year at East Central University in Ada was visiting his girlfriend in Duncan when he was shot on Aug. 16, 2013.
“They saw Christopher go by and one of them said, ‘There’s our target,'” police said following the shooting. “The boy who has talked to us said, ‘We were bored and didn’t have anything to do, so we decided to kill somebody.'”
The driver, Michael DeWayne Jones (then 17), pleaded guilty in March to second-degree murder and was sentenced to life in prison. He will be eligible for parole in 2051.
A third suspect, then 15, agreed to testify against Jones and Luna; prosecutors dropped his murder charge, according to CNN. He will be tried as a juvenile with accessory to murder after the fact.
A fourth man, 23-year-old Oddesse John David Barnes, was sentenced in January to serve 12 years as an accessory to murder after he admitted to concealing the .22-caliber revolver used in the shooting.
In the Stephens County courtroom where he was sentenced in March, Jones addressed Lane’s girlfriend and her parents, saying in a choked voice that he was “truly sorry,” The Oklahoman reports.
And Jones asked forgiveness. “I pray for you all daily,” he said.
Following his conviction Friday, Luna appeared visibly upset as he left the courtroom, according to CNN video – saying “I’m sorry” to a reporter. Luna’s mother Jennifer told reporters that he didn’t deserve to lose his second chance.
“It’s been incredibly tough … This is so unfamiliar to us, being in a courtroom,” Lane’s mother Donna said through tears following the verdict, according to CNN video.
“It doesn’t change the fact of what happened,” Lane’s father Peter said. “So yes, it’s a result. But it’s not a good result or a bad result. It’s just a result.”
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