Ex-cop gets 7 years for killing fellow officer in Russian roulette shooting
A former St. Louis police officer pleaded guilty Friday in the shooting death of a fellow cop during a game of Russian roulette, according to a report.
Nathaniel Hendren, 30, pleaded guilty to charges of first-degree involuntary manslaughter and armed criminal action for killing off-duty officer Katlyn Alix, 24, in January 2019. The pair had been playing a Russian Roulette-style game with a handgun in his apartment in Carondelet, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports.
As part of a plea deal with prosecutors, Hendren will serve seven years in prison for manslaughter, as well a three-year sentence for armed criminal action — to be served concurrently. The prison term is the maximum sentence he had faced, the newspaper reports.
“I don’t intend to try and explain anyone else’s hurt or make this day any more about me than it already is,” Hendren said while apologizing to Alix’s relatives in court. “I simply wish to express my sincere remorse to this court and to the family of Katlyn Alix, a wonderful woman full of tenacity and self-determination.”
Hendren, who had been set to go on trial next month, left the department less than one month after the shooting. The disgraced cop’s state peace officer license was suspended, meaning he was no longer able to work in law enforcement, according to the newspaper.
Court records cited by the Post-Dispatch indicated that Hendren removed bullets from a revolver before putting one back in the handgun. He then allegedly spun the cylinder, pointed it away and pulled the trigger.
The weapon didn’t fire, leading Alix to take the firearm and point it at Hendren before she pulled the trigger with the same result. Hendren then took the gun back, pulled the trigger and struck Alix in the chest, court records show.
Hendren and his on-duty partner, Patrick Riordan, reported the shooting on their police radios before rushing Alix — a married, two-year veteran — to the hospital in their department SUV.
Riordan, who was not charged in the fatal shooting, told investigators that he warned the pair that they should not be playing with a gun.
Hendren, meanwhile, did not fire the weapon believing that a round was in its active cylinder position, St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kimberly Gardner told the newspaper in a statement.
“Although there is nothing that the law can do to restore the life of officer Alix, it can make sure that the person responsible for her senseless death is held accountable for his careless behavior,” Gardner said in the statement.
Alix’s mother, meanwhile, filed a wrongful death lawsuit in November claiming that Hendren had a “complicated psychiatric history” and previously forced other girlfriends to play Russian roulette, the Post-Dispatch reported.
Source : Joshua Rhett Miller Link