The Justice Files: Kill or be killed

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WEST JORDAN Utah (ABC4 Utah) – Lucas Deprey thought he was going to be killed, so he drew first and killed Ever Hernandez in October 2017.

Last week a jury didn’t buy his self-defense claim and convicted him of murdering Hernandez.

It all started at a parking lot of a business near 4500 South State in Murray.

Deprey testified in court that he was waiting for his mother when Hernandez drove up.

Surveillance video obtained by ABC4 showed Hernandez’s red vehicle drive into the parking lot and stopped to talk with Deprey.

During his court testimony, Deprey claimed Hernandez was a member of a Mexican drug cartel operating along the Wasatch Front. And he also suspected Hernandez of killing a friend who had suddenly disappeared.

“Stop talking about (friend) or I’ll kill you too,” Deprey claimed Hernandez told him.

Deprey answered him using an expletive and walked away. Hernandez drove off but returned as seen in the video. Deprey again talked with him.

“He made a reaching gesture across his body at what I believe was his pocket or his side console for a weapon,” Deprey testified during his trial.

“(That) is when I pulled out my gun, fired one shot and just ran.”

Hernandez was shot once in the head and his foot pressed the gas pedal forcing the vehicle to move a short distance. It hit several vehicles on State Street. One of the vehicles hit belonged to Bob Bailey.

“He accelerated, came across all these lanes, hitting all of us and ended up hitting me the last,” Bailey said back in 2017.

Meanwhile, Deprey fled on foot right after the shooting. Surveillance video showed him running through an auto dealership as employees looked on.

Murray police searched the neighborhood on the ground and in the air but Deprey got away. About a week later, he was arrested in Oregon and charged with Hernandez’s murder.

At his trial, Deprey claimed he too was a violent person but it was out of fear. He said he was a smaller person and needed to defend himself with the world he lived in. And when he saw Hernandez make amove in the car, he shot first.

“I feared it was my life or his life and I made the decision instantly on the spot,” Deprey testified.

The jury deliberated late into the night last Friday before reaching a guilty verdict on both counts, murder, and obstruction of justice. Deprey will be sentenced on February 26.

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