Appeal court reinstates murder conviction of Bryce Perkins

LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - The Third Circuit Court of Appeal reinstated the second degree murder conviction of Bryce Perkins.

Perkins shot and killed Marine Daniel Gueringer at a Fourth of July party in 2009.

The jury found Perkins guilty of second degree murder, but when it came time for sentencing the trial court judge, Ron Ware, found the evidence was insufficient for a murder conviction and replaced the jury verdict with manslaughter.

Gueringer's family and members of the public were outraged. The Calcasieu District Attorney's Office appealed.

In February the prosecution and defense argued before the Third Circuit.

The appeal court sided with the State, put back the murder conviction and sent the case back to Ware for re-sentencing.

Second-degree murder carries a mandatory life sentence.  Ware sentenced Perkins to thirty years in prison.

Daniel's family issued the following statement:

"We believe the Third Circuit Court's decision, to reinstate the second degree murder conviction, sends a clear message to our community that a person will be held responsible for their violent actions.  Our son, Daniel, was a loving, intelligent young man who at the age of 20 had already achieved important goals which he had set for himself.  We wish he would have had the chance to live his life and experience and achieve so much more.  We would like to thank Mr. Bryant, his staff, and Ms. Sigler for their professionalism and passion with which they prosecuted and appealed this case as well as to the jury for their time and commitment."

-Sandra and Bill

To read the third circuit ruling [CLICK HERE]

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