Man gets 55 years for murder of man at bachelor party


INDIANAPOLIS — A man convicted of murder and criminal recklessness in the 2019 shooting death of a man celebrating his bachelor party has been sentenced to 55 years in prison, prosecutors said Thursday.

Derek Oechsle, 33, also was found guilty last month in the Nov. 29, 2019, slaying of Christopher Smith, 41.

Smith and some friends were celebrating his upcoming marriage when witnesses said Oechsle, sitting nearby, appeared to become visibly upset, prosecutors have said. A fight ensued and Oechsle pulled out a gun and began to strike another man.

When Smith attempted to break up the fight, Oechsle shot Smith and into the surrounding crowd until a member of Smith’s party returned fire, striking Oechsle multiple times, prosecutors said.

Smith immediately collapsed on the floor due to his injuries. Oechsle fled the scene before collapsing in the parking lot, prosecutors said.

Oechsle was sentenced last week.

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