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Woman convicted of killing husband in 2017 prepares for retrial

Susan Marie King could be retried in the 2017 homicide of her husband. [File Jackson County Jail booking photo]
The nonunanimous verdict was overturned on appeal

A Central Point woman found guilty of killing her husband in June 2017 — but who had the nonunanimous jury verdict overturned on appeal — could face retrial in Jackson County Circuit Court in the coming year.

Susan Marie King, 61, was rearrested Dec. 9, after admitting she had consumed alcohol, which is one of the stipulations King agreed to in exchange for her release in advance of potentially being retried for fatally shooting her husband, Duane Levon King.

King’s first-degree manslaughter conviction was reversed by the state court of appeals in July because it wasn’t a unanimous verdict, said Nicolas Geil, a Jackson County deputy district attorney.

The District Attorney’s office asked earlier this month to have King’s conditional pretrial release revoked “on the ground that [King] has consumed alcohol in violation of the release agreement,” Geil explained.

On the night of the shooting in the 2800 block of Oakridge Avenue, Jackson County sheriff’s deputies were called for reports of a domestic disturbance and shots fired.

Duane L. King was found on the property, unresponsive and bleeding profusely. On-site treatment by first-responders was unsuccessful, earlier accounts stated.

King was drunk and had attempted to flee by vehicle. Her blood alcohol level was nearly three times the legal limit. The District Attorney’s office sought a murder charge but the jury acquitted her of murder and opted for manslaughter.

She was returned to Jackson County after having been sentenced to a 10-year term in state prison for the shooting death until the successful appeal.

With King’s arrest Dec. 9 for violating her security release agreement issued in July, her security deposit of $50,000 was forfeited, Geil said.

The full security amount was $500,000, and that agreement required her to not do such things as consume alcohol, drugs or any other intoxicants not prescribed by a doctor, as well as to not “possess firearms, either actual or simulated, ammunition, weapons or dangerous animals,” according to court documents.

A new release agreement contingent on a $250,000 bond was similar to the original agreement and she was required to pay 10%, $25,000. Again, King is supposed to not drive without a valid license and insurance.

This latest agreement also requires that she not contact the victim’s children and submit to polygraph testing “to verify compliance with release conditions.”

King’s case is scheduled for a pretrial conference Jan. 14, 2022. That court date will follow up on a pretrial conference held last Friday in the circuit court.

Reach reporter Terri Harber at tharber@rosebudmedia.com or 541-776-4468.