Karen Read murder trial: Witness says Read yelled, ‘Did I hit him?’
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Karen Read murder trial: Witness says Read yelled, ‘Did I hit him?’

Witnesses were questioned Friday about text messages they sent and the exclamations they heard from Karen Read, the Massachusetts woman accused of hitting her boyfriend with an SUV and leaving him to die in a snowstorm.Read, 44, of Mansfield, has pleaded not guilty to second-degree murder and other charges. The prosecution says she hit her boyfriend, John O’Keefe, with her black SUV outside of a home at 34 Fairview Rd in Canton during a snowstorm on Jan. 29, 2022, following a night of drinking. Her defense plans to argue that someone else is responsible for killing O’Keefe. Jennifer McCabe, who said she’d known O’Keefe for about 10 years, testified that she was at the Waterfall Bar & Grille with the couple on the night in question and asked them to go to the Albert family’s house on Fairview Road after the bar closed. Jennifer McCabe and her husband, Matt McCabe, both testified that they had seen Read’s black SUV outside 34 Fairview Rd. During Jennifer McCabe’s testimony, the prosecution showed a message she sent to O’Keefe asking “Here!?”The Albert family previously testified that neither O’Keefe nor Read ever came inside. The McCabes said Read was hysterical the next morning. Jennifer McCabe said Read told her O’Keefe hadn’t come home, that they’d gotten into a fight and that she’d left him at the bar.Jennifer McCabe eventually drove Read to Fairview Road in Read’s SUV. She said that Read spotted O’Keefe in the snow before anyone else and repeatedly made incriminating statements. Jennifer McCabe said Read asked several times that morning, “Did I hit him? Could I have hit him?”She also said that when Read spoke to the paramedic, the question became a statement, “I hit him.” During this testimony, defense attorney Alan Jackson was seen smiling and looking at Read.Live updates: Follow posts from reporter David BienickRelated links:Recap of testimony, evidence from each day of the case Evidence slideshowWhat to know about the case:Karen Read, 44, of Mansfield, is accused of second-degree murder and other charges. The prosecution says she hit her boyfriend, Boston police officer John O’Keefe, with her vehicle outside of a home in Canton during a snowstorm on Jan. 29, 2022, following a night of drinking. She returned hours later to find him in a snowbank.Read has pleaded not guilty.Read and her defense team claim she is the victim of a cover-up and plan to present a third-party culprit defense. They claim O’Keefe was beaten inside the home, bitten by a dog, and then left outside.In pretrial motions, prosecutors revealed the existence of text messages they said suggested a “romantic entanglement” with a friend who was present at locations Read and O’Keefe visited on the night of the incident. Other documents have also suggested trouble in the relationship between Read and O’Keefe.Read is also accused of having frequent contact with a controversial blogger known as “Turtleboy,” Aiden Kearney, who now faces charges in related cases.Opening statements were delivered on April 29.The trial is expected to last 6-8 weeks.Case evidence slideshow:Prosecutors are trying to show that Read’s actions were intentional. To do that, Norfolk Assistant District Attorney Adam Lally said evidence would show that the couple’s stormy relationship had begun to “sour” in the month before O’Keefe died and that the two got into arguments.Read’s lawyers have alleged there was a cover-up involving members of several law enforcement agencies. They say O’Keefe was beaten by someone else inside the home, bitten by a dog and then left outside.They argued investigators focused on Read because she was a “convenient outsider,” and that prevented them from considering other suspects. On Thursday, Colin Albert, a key witness for the prosecution and one of the people that Read’s defense has tried to implicate, faced confrontational questioning about photos, videos and whether he had been in a fight.The defense entered into evidence a photo of Albert taken less than a month after O’Keefe’s death. In the image, the knuckles on his right hand are bruised.The defense is trying to convince the Jury that John O’Keefe was beaten and argues that Colin Albert had been in a fight. Albert said the injury came when he fell in a driveway and that he never saw O’Keefe on the night in question.He was in high school at the time but previously testified that he was drinking beer at a friend’s house before going to 34 Fairview Road to celebrate his cousin’s birthday.Albert said he spent about 90 minutes there before texting Allie McCabe for a ride and leaving around 12:10 p.m. Albert said he never saw O’Keefe on the night in question and testified that they had no animosity or arguments.Albert is the nephew of the couple that owned the Canton property where John O’Keefe was found in January 2022. He also confirmed on cross-examination that he has known the lead state police investigator in this case, Trooper Michael Proctor, since he was a child. The trial’s first few days also detailed the futile efforts of first responders to save O’Keefe. They found him face up when they arrived just before dawn on Jan. 29. He was pronounced dead at the hospital, and an autopsy later found he died of hypothermia and blunt force trauma.Several of the first responders said they heard Read make statements, including, “I hit him,” after O’Keefe was found. Defense attorneys confronted several of those witnesses by asking why those alleged remarks were not included in official reports.Officers also testified about unusual procedures used during the investigation, including the decision to collect bloody snow in red plastic cups and clearing snow from the crime scene.

Witnesses were questioned Friday about text messages they sent and the exclamations they heard from Karen Read, the Massachusetts woman accused of hitting her boyfriend with an SUV and leaving him to die in a snowstorm.

Read, 44, of Mansfield, has pleaded not guilty to second-degree murder and other charges. The prosecution says she hit her boyfriend, John O’Keefe, with her black SUV outside of a home at 34 Fairview Rd in Canton during a snowstorm on Jan. 29, 2022, following a night of drinking. Her defense plans to argue that someone else is responsible for killing O’Keefe.

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Jennifer McCabe, who said she’d known O’Keefe for about 10 years, testified that she was at the Waterfall Bar & Grille with the couple on the night in question and asked them to go to the Albert family’s house on Fairview Road after the bar closed.

Jennifer McCabe and her husband, Matt McCabe, both testified that they had seen Read’s black SUV outside 34 Fairview Rd. During Jennifer McCabe’s testimony, the prosecution showed a message she sent to O’Keefe asking “Here!?”

The Albert family previously testified that neither O’Keefe nor Read ever came inside.

The McCabes said Read was hysterical the next morning. Jennifer McCabe said Read told her O’Keefe hadn’t come home, that they’d gotten into a fight and that she’d left him at the bar.

Jennifer McCabe eventually drove Read to Fairview Road in Read’s SUV. She said that Read spotted O’Keefe in the snow before anyone else and repeatedly made incriminating statements.

Jennifer McCabe said Read asked several times that morning, “Did I hit him? Could I have hit him?”

She also said that when Read spoke to the paramedic, the question became a statement, “I hit him.”

During this testimony, defense attorney Alan Jackson was seen smiling and looking at Read.


Live updates:


Related links:

What to know about the case:

  • Karen Read, 44, of Mansfield, is accused of second-degree murder and other charges. The prosecution says she hit her boyfriend, Boston police officer John O’Keefe, with her vehicle outside of a home in Canton during a snowstorm on Jan. 29, 2022, following a night of drinking. She returned hours later to find him in a snowbank.
  • Read has pleaded not guilty.
  • Read and her defense team claim she is the victim of a cover-up and plan to present a third-party culprit defense. They claim O’Keefe was beaten inside the home, bitten by a dog, and then left outside.
  • In pretrial motions, prosecutors revealed the existence of text messages they said suggested a “romantic entanglement” with a friend who was present at locations Read and O’Keefe visited on the night of the incident. Other documents have also suggested trouble in the relationship between Read and O’Keefe.
  • Read is also accused of having frequent contact with a controversial blogger known as “Turtleboy,” Aiden Kearney, who now faces charges in related cases.
  • Opening statements were delivered on April 29.
  • The trial is expected to last 6-8 weeks.

Case evidence slideshow:


Prosecutors are trying to show that Read’s actions were intentional. To do that, Norfolk Assistant District Attorney Adam Lally said evidence would show that the couple’s stormy relationship had begun to “sour” in the month before O’Keefe died and that the two got into arguments.

Read’s lawyers have alleged there was a cover-up involving members of several law enforcement agencies. They say O’Keefe was beaten by someone else inside the home, bitten by a dog and then left outside.

They argued investigators focused on Read because she was a “convenient outsider,” and that prevented them from considering other suspects.

On Thursday, Colin Albert, a key witness for the prosecution and one of the people that Read’s defense has tried to implicate, faced confrontational questioning about photos, videos and whether he had been in a fight.

The defense entered into evidence a photo of Albert taken less than a month after O’Keefe’s death. In the image, the knuckles on his right hand are bruised.

karen read speaks to attorney alan jackson

Hearst Owned

Officer John O’Keefe

The defense is trying to convince the Jury that John O’Keefe was beaten and argues that Colin Albert had been in a fight. Albert said the injury came when he fell in a driveway and that he never saw O’Keefe on the night in question.

He was in high school at the time but previously testified that he was drinking beer at a friend’s house before going to 34 Fairview Road to celebrate his cousin’s birthday.

Albert said he spent about 90 minutes there before texting Allie McCabe for a ride and leaving around 12:10 p.m. Albert said he never saw O’Keefe on the night in question and testified that they had no animosity or arguments.

Albert is the nephew of the couple that owned the Canton property where John O’Keefe was found in January 2022. He also confirmed on cross-examination that he has known the lead state police investigator in this case, Trooper Michael Proctor, since he was a child.

Defendant Karen Read sits at the defense table during her murder trial, Thursday, May 2, 2024, in Dedham, Mass. Read, 44, of Mansfield, faces several charges including second degree murder in the death of her Boston Police officer boyfriend John O’Keefe, 46, in 2022. (David McGlynn/New York Post via AP, Pool)

David McGlynn

Karen Read with her defense team

The trial’s first few days also detailed the futile efforts of first responders to save O’Keefe. They found him face up when they arrived just before dawn on Jan. 29. He was pronounced dead at the hospital, and an autopsy later found he died of hypothermia and blunt force trauma.

shattered glass introduced as evidence in karen read trial

Hearst Owned

Shattered glass introduced as evidence in Karen Read trial.

Several of the first responders said they heard Read make statements, including, “I hit him,” after O’Keefe was found. Defense attorneys confronted several of those witnesses by asking why those alleged remarks were not included in official reports.

Officers also testified about unusual procedures used during the investigation, including the decision to collect bloody snow in red plastic cups and clearing snow from the crime scene.

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