KGOU

Robert Bever Pleads Guilty, Sentenced To Life For 2015 Killing Of Parents, 3 Siblings

Sep 8, 2016

Robert Bever will spend the rest of his life behind bars for the the grisly 2015 killing of five of his family members in their Broken Arrow home.

Bever entered guilty pleas during an arraignment Wednesday in Tulsa County District Court.

Parents April and David Bever, along with 12-year-old Daniel, 7-year-old Christopher and 5-year-old Victoria were found stabbed to death July 22, 2015. A 13-year-old sister survived the attack, and a 2-year-old was unharmed.

An agreement with prosecutors gave Bever six consecutive life sentences — one for each murder and one for attempted murder of his teenage sister. The five murder sentences are without the possibility of parole.

Tulsa County District Attorney Steve Kunzweiler said the decision not to pursue the death penalty wasn't taken lightly.

"I have a surviving, teenage young girl and a toddler,” Kunzweiler said. “Those children deserve a life, and I am not going to saddle them with what I know the reality of a death penalty case to be.”

Defense attorney Mark Henricks said they've worked more than a year to avoid the death penalty, then alluded to a troubled Bever home.

"This is a tragedy of immeasurable dimensions; however, our client will have an easier life in the penitentiary than he had at home. I don't have any further comment on that," Henricks said.

The younger brother, 17-year-old Michael Bever, faces the same charges and had not guilty pleas entered for him on all counts. His trial will begin June 5.

Michael Bever's attorney, Rob Nigh, called the case a tragedy of immeasurable proportions.

"Part of the tragedy is that Michael Bever was a child legally, chronologically, at the time of these events — except under the criminal statutes of the state of Oklahoma," Nigh said.

Both Robert and Michael appeared in person for Wednesday's arraignment. They were brought in separately through different entrances to the courtroom.

Robert was seated first, at the defense table. He briefly smiled at his brother after Michael was seated in the jury box with Nigh.