MISTRIAL DECLARED IN KAREN READ MURDER TRIAL: Jury Deadlocked in Case of Police Officer’s Death

DEDHAM, MASSACHUSETTS — A mistrial was declared in Karen Read’s murder trial on Monday, following jurors’ inability to reach a unanimous decision regarding the death of her police officer boyfriend, John O’Keefe, in 2022. The decision was reached after nine weeks of trial proceedings and five days of deliberations in a courthouse located outside of Boston.

Throughout the trial, prosecution argued that the tumultuous relationship between Read, 44, and O’Keefe culminated in her fatally striking him with her Lexus SUV and then leaving the scene on January 29, 2022. She faced charges of second-degree murder, motor vehicle manslaughter while driving under the influence, and leaving the scene of a collision causing death.

Despite efforts from the jury of six men and six women, a deadlock was reached, leading to the mistrial declaration by Norfolk County Superior Court Judge Beverly Cannone. Following this development, a status hearing for the case has been scheduled for later this month, as prosecutors expressed their intent to retry the case.

The defense team for Read alleged that law enforcement officers had framed her, concealing a beating that O’Keefe allegedly endured during a gathering at the home where his body was discovered. Lead investigator, Massachusetts State Trooper Michael Proctor, was accused of manipulating evidence and mishandling the investigation, according to the defense.

In response, Norfolk County Assistant District Attorney Adam Lally acknowledged the inappropriate texts sent by Proctor but maintained that they did not compromise the integrity of the investigation. The defense’s assertions of a cover-up were dismissed as baseless speculation.

The trial also saw the introduction of a third-party culprit defense, proposing an alternative theory to O’Keefe’s death. It suggested that an ATF agent, Brian Higgins, who had exchanged flirtatious messages with Read, could be a possible suspect. Higgins denied any involvement and claimed he did not witness O’Keefe inside the house where the incident occurred.

Moving forward, the case will undergo further legal proceedings as the district attorney’s office prepares for a retrial, aiming to seek justice for O’Keefe’s family and bring clarity to the circumstances surrounding his tragic death.