Closing Statements Made in Oertel Homicide Trial
By Joe Bachman
Closing statements were made by the prosecution and the defense in the trial of an 18-year-old who faces charges of first degree reckless homicide.
The definitive argument held between District Attorney Craig Lambert and defense attorney Michael Hughes is that Miguel Angel-Oertel, 18, held an utter disregard for human life in his actions.
Both Hughes and Lambert agreed on the sequence of events — that on Aug. 17, 2015, Miguel Oertel entered the residence of Theresa Coates with a loaded shotgun with the intent to kill himself in front of his ex-girlfriend, the victim’s daughter. As Oertel approached Coates, she grabbed the barrel of his shotgun and Oertel pulled back, accidentally pulling the trigger and shooting Coates in the abdomen.
According to Lambert, Oertel had no regard for human life due to his planned actions of taking his own life, regardless of consequences. Lambert believes Oertel should be convicted of first degree reckless homicide.
Hughes argued that Oertel did not have the mental capacity or experience to fully understand his actions, and that his intent was only to harm himself, and not to harm Coates. Hughes believes that Oertel should be convicted only of negligent homicide, which carries a lesser sentence.
The 12-person jury is currently in deliberation to come to a verdict.
Check back for updates.