Nearly four years after he shot his stepfather in a trailer and burned his body, a man from Bixby, Oklahoma was sentenced to spend 45 years in prison.
Kevin Tyler Foster, 36, admittedly murdered Rick Swan on Nov. 15, 2018 in a trailer, in what was the violent culmination of an ongoing “family feud.” Foster signed a plea agreement on Nov. 8, 2021 admitting to second-degree murder in Indian Country.
Notably, Foster reached a “C” plea deal with federal prosecutors, a deal named after Rule 11(c)(1)(C) of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure. Some judges reject those deals because they take sentencing discretion out of their hands upon accepting the agreement, but others do not. And in the case of Foster, U.S. District Judge Claire V. Eagan accepted the agreement and sentenced Foster to 45 years in prison on Tuesday, as stipulated in the agreement between Foster and prosecutors.
“The parties have considered various factors in fashioning this sentence, including the defendant’s acceptance of responsibility, the strength of the evidence, judicial economy, and the interests of justice,” the agreement said, also noting that Foster is “remorseful and willing to make amends.”
“Specifically, the defendant provided an in-depth confession to all of the events surrounding and including the murder,” the agreement continued.
Foster ultimately admitted that he shot Swan three times before burning the victim’s body:
I, Kevin Foster, admit that on or about November 15, 2018, I knowingly and intentionally shot Rick Swan with my pistol. I drove to Mr. Swan’s property and entered into the building that housed a trailer where Mr. Swan was living. I opened the trailer door and shot Mr. Swan three times. I then poured an incendiary liquid on Mr. Swan’s dead body and lit his body on fire. I shot at Mr. Swan with malice aforethought and intended to kill him. All of these actions occurred within the Northern District of Oklahoma and within the boundaries of the Cherokee Nation Reservation. I am an Indian and a member of the Cherokee Nation.
Prosecutors said that investigators “learned that the victim and Foster were involved in an intense ‘family feud'” prior to the murder “and that the two were scheduled for a hearing in Tulsa County District Court the same day.”
According a press release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Oklahoma, Swan had also confided in someone that he worried that the “feud” might be a threat to his safety.
One piece of evidence that prosecutors highlighted was deer camera footage from Swan’s property, which “revealed still images of the defendant inside the building at 10:36 am the day of the crime carrying what appeared to be a firearm.”
“A second image showed Foster carrying a red gasoline can, and another showed a fire blaze and illumination on the edge of the screen,” the press release said.
Read the plea agreement below:
[Image via Tulsa County Jail]
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