Karen Read — the woman accused of killing boyfriend John O’Keefe, a Boston police officer, by backing into him after dropping him off at a Canton home — has been indicted for second-degree murder and other charges.
Read, 42, of Mansfield was indicted by a Norfolk County Grand Jury on the charges of second-degree murder, motor vehicle manslaughter and leaving the scene of a collision causing death in the Jan. 29 death of O’Keefe, 46, a 16-year member of the Boston Police Department and Read’s boyfriend of two years.
She pleaded not guilty to the charges at Norfolk Superior Court the next day.
These are updated charges in the case. Read pleaded not guilty in Stoughton District Court on Feb. 2 to her original charges of manslaughter, leaving the scene of a motor vehicle collision causing death and motor vehicle homicide. She had been out on $50,000 cash bail following that arraignment until she was arrested Thursday on the new indictment charges.
O’Keefe was found in front of the Fairview Road home in Canton in the early morning of Jan. 29 as snow was already falling heavily ahead of that weekend’s major nor’easter. He was transported to Good Samaritan Medical Center where he was pronounced dead.
Authorities say that the couple had been out at two Canton bars with friends the evening before, and when bars closed they had agreed to meet up for a get-together at the home where O’Keefe’s unresponsive body would be discovered. Prosecutors argue that Read backed up into O’Keefe as she made a three-point turn to go back home.
Her attorney, David Yannetti, has maintained that “there was no criminal intent” in whatever happened that night and has emphasized that the couple was a loving one. He has also said his client was helping him to raise O’Keefe’s niece and nephew, who he had adopted following the death of their parents, Kristen and Stephen Furbush, who died in 2013 and 2014.
A GoFundMe page was set up for the children and it closed after having raised $336,735 for the children, far in excess of its original $10,000 goal.
“John was not only a dedicated police officer, he was an exemplary guardian, son, brother, uncle and friend and we were so fortunate to have him as a part of our lives,” O’Keefe’s family said in a statement a few days after his death. “People talk about someone who would give you the shirt off their back but that was truly who John was, and it is heartbreaking for us to suddenly be talking about him in the past tense.”
Read is scheduled to next appear for a pre-trial conference on Aug. 12.
Boston Herald file photoBoston Police Officer John O’Keefe died during this past weekend’s storm. (BDNews.com photo.) Boston Herald file photoaren Read is arraigned in Stoughton District Court on charges related in the death of Boston Police Officer John O’Keefe on February 2, 2022 in Stoughton, MA. (Staff Photo By Nancy Lane/MediaNews Group/Boston Herald)