Dueling plea deals in the days leading up to the re-trial of Jeffery Karr carried all the way into the start of his first-degree murder proceedings Tuesday until the defendant eventually stopped the trial after lunch to admit guilt for his role in the robbery that resulted in Michael Wermy's death Sept. 25, 2009.
Karr admits conspiracyto commit robbery
Before the trial even began, Karr's defense attorney Jim Berry, said District Judge J. Allen McCall, accepted a blind plea to a reduced charge of conspiracy to commit first-degree robbery and McCall sentenced Karr to 30 years with 20 years suspended. Karr will be credited for the three years he's already been held in the county jail awaiting trial.
Berry said a plea had been discussed the past two or three days and the decision "would be in the best interests of both the state and the defendant considering the facts of the case."
Berry and Comanche County Assistant District Attorney Irma Newburn both said it was decided to take the plea to McCall because District Judge Mark Smith was hearing the case and had already empanelled a jury.
Although Newburn said the defense and prosecution had been throwing numbers back and forth leading up to the trial, the plea was made without a formal recommendation from the State.
The conspiracy charge is not considered an "85 percent crime," meaning Karr will not be required to serve 85 percent of the sentence before being eligible for parole. Sometimes the Oklahoma Department of Corrections awards two or three to one credits for days spent incarcerated, meaning every one day spent incarcerated is counted as two or three days toward their sentence.