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Okemos grad to claim self-defense

The 19-year-old Okemos man accused of stabbing his sister's boyfriend to death appeared at a bond hearing last week where his attorney indicated he will be asserting self-defense. Court documents show that the defendant went to the victim's Meridian Township apartment early on the morning of February 23 because of an argument between the victim and the defendant's older sister.

The victim, a 23-year-old Michigan State University student, lived at the apartment with the defendant's sister and another male roommate. The defendant was living at home with his parents nearby; he graduated from Okemos High School in 2012, where he was captain of the football team. Details of the supposed argument between the victim and the defendant's sister are unknown. The defendant and victim supposedly exchanged text messages in the hours leading up to the incident.

In Michigan, the killing of another person in self-defense is justifiable homicide if the defendant honestly and reasonably believes the use of deadly force is necessary to prevent death or serious harm to himself, or to another. If the defendant can prove that he had an honest and reasonable belief that he or another person were in danger of death or serious harm at the hands of the victim, he could potentially succeed in arguing self-defense.

The judge denied the defendant's motion for bond and he was remanded to the Ingham County Jail. A pretrial conference is scheduled for April 16 and a preliminaray examination is set of April 18 in 55th District Court.

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