Woman tied to events of officer shooting won't serve prison time

A judge sentenced Lakrista Julian Monday. Police say she helped hide the murder suspect who police were investigating when Officer Rob Pitts was shot and killed.

Posted: Nov 18, 2019 3:15 PM
Updated: Nov 18, 2019 5:10 PM

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTHI) - A woman tied to the events of a deadly officer shooting in Terre Haute received a felony conviction on Monday, but she will not serve prison time. 

Judge John Roach sentenced Lakrista Julian to one year, suspended to formal probation for lying to investigators. According to the Vigo County Prosecutor’s Office, she received a sentence for one year in the Vigo County Jail, with credit for time already served on home detention; and the remaining sentence suspended. She will be supervised on formal probation for the remainder of the one year sentence.

In October, Julian entered a guilty plea to Obstruction of Justice. She requested the conviction be entered as a Class A misdemeanor. However, the State said she should receive a felony conviction with home detention and probation.

PREVIOUS STORY | VIGO COUNTY WOMAN CHARGED IN CONNECTION TO THE DEATH OF TERRE HAUTE POLICE OFFICER TAKES A PLEA DEAL

According to a statement from the Vigo County Prosecutor's Office, under state law, the Judge could decide whether or not to enter the conviction as a Level 6 felony, or as a Class A misdemeanor.

“Given the level of the offense and her lack of criminal history, under the law she qualified to have her conviction entered as a misdemeanor,” said Chief Deputy Prosecutor Robert Roberts. “Our primary goal was for her to receive a felony conviction so that she, and others in similar circumstances, would know that it is never appropriate to lie to investigators during a recorded interview. I am pleased that the Court agreed with us that her crime is serious and deserves a felony conviction.”

PREVIOUS STORY | COURT DOCUMENTS REVEAL MORE INFORMATION ON LAKRISTA JULIAN'S CONNECTION TO OFFICER SHOOTING

Police arrested Julian at her Garden Quarter apartment in May of 2018. The complex is where the fatal shooting of Terre Haute Police Officer Rob Pitts took place. Officer Pitts was investigating the murder of Robert Paulie Olson at the time he died. Police said Julian helped the murder suspect, Christopher Wolfe. They also allege she lied to them during the investigation. 

"Our prayers continue for the Olson and Pitts families. It is our sincere hope that closing the criminal case arising out of these homicides will allow them to continue in their healing," the Vigo County Prosecutor's Office said in a statement.

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