Oklahoma County deputies arrest teen in connection with homicide; suspect claims shooter recently charged in different murder

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Stephen Courtemanche

Editor’s Note: The original story had video which has been removed and the text of this story has been updated.

OKLAHOMA COUNTY (KFOR) – A 15 year old from Harrah is accused of participating in the murder of an Oklahoma County man, and he claims the actual shooting was done by a 17 year old who was arrested last week for allegedly killing a man, possibly his stepfather.

The 15-year old of Harrah, is suspected of first-degree murder in the death of Stephen Courtemanche at a residence in the 21300 block of East Reno in Oklahoma County. Courtemanche’s body was discovered on Aug. 28.

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Stephen Courtemanche

A probable cause affidavit states that 15-year old was interviewed at the Oklahoma County Sheriff’s Office.

The 15-year old allegedly told an investigator he was present at the time of the murder and that a 17-year-old shot Courtemanche to death. That 17-year old was arrested last week in Lincoln County for the alleged shooting death of a man whose body was burned in Harrah but formal charges have not yet been filed. KFOR will name the suspect if charges are filed.

“It is important to note that (juvenile) isn’t charged with Mr. Courtemanche’s homicide, we’re still investigating those claims, we’re looking into those,” said Aaron Brilbeck, spokesman for the Oklahoma County Sheriff’s Office.

The 15 year old said the 17-year old approached him and asked him to accompany him to the East Reno residence because he was going to kill a person named Jesse and take his guns.

However, Courtemanche was the only person at the house. The person the 17-year old referred to as Jesse no longer lived at the house, but still kept two rifles there.

The 15-year old said on the way to the home, they picked up a male the 17-year old knew and told investigators he didn’t know the male’s name.

He said they arrived at the residence and the unidentified male kicked in the front door of the house. They then walked through the living room and down a hallway toward a bedroom.

“…stated the 17-year old pointed his 9mm handgun inside the bedroom and began shooting. The 15-year old stated the gun jammed and the 17-year old inserted a different magazine into the handgun and began shooting again,” the affidavit states.

The 15-year old said he could see the victim’s body on the floor, lit by the light from a television screen.

The report goes on to say the 17-year old and his unnamed accomplice went into a nearby bedroom, retrieved two gun cases, removed two rifles from them and placed them into a duffle bag before returning to Stockton’s pickup and leaving, according to the 15-year old.

Investigators said in the affidavit that one of the weapons stolen was an AK-47.

“This was one of those cases where by all accounts, Mr. Courtemanche was a good man,” Brilbeck said. “The family didn’t deserve this. He certainly didn’t deserve this.”

Courtemanche, an Air Force veteran, was murdered 30 days before his retirement, according to Rita Griffin, his sister-in-law.

“He was so excited to be able to retire and stay home and do stuff he wanted to do,” his sister-in-law said.

Courtemanche’s wife released a statement to KFOR, saying, “I’m absolutely thrilled about the arrests and continue to work with the Oklahoma County Sheriff’s Office on this matter. I commend them for their diligent work on the case.”

Authorities transported the 15-year to the Oklahoma County Detention Center following the interview.

Investigators developed the 15-year old as a person of interest while investigating the 17-year old and interviewing two adolescent females who knew the teen.

The first female told investigators that the 17-year old had a 9mm handgun and recently acquired an AK-47 rifle.

The second female said the 17-year old told her that he gave his 9mm handgun to the 15-year old.

Investigators then learned about a Snapchat video showing the 15-year old in possession of an AK-47 rifle.

Brilbeck said investigators have yet to interview the 17-year old about Courtemanche’s murder.

He also confirmed that there is a third suspect in Courtemanche’s murder, but information about that suspect is not yet being released.

Maryann Beal Cannon, were arrested last week in connection with the murder of a man and the 17-year old is alleged to have shot and killed the man. Cannon allegedly helped the teen cover it up by burning the body and later the home in early August.

The man’s remains were found last week.

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