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Man Denies Charge That he Killed Friend in Ames

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AMES, Iowa (AP) - A 32-year-old man accused of murder in Ames says he is not a cold-blooded killer.

Leigh LePon told Des Moines television station KCCI that his best friend, Devlin Lockman, accidentally shot himself on Dec. 20. LePon says Lockman had been drinking and playing with his gun.

Police originally said the shooting was accidental. The charge against LePon came after an investigation that involved new witness information and additional forensic evidence.

LePon says police targeted him because of his criminal record. He says he called 911 to report the shooting and stayed with Lockman and tried to go to a hospital with him. LePon says those aren't the acts of a killer.

LePon has pleaded not guilty to a murder charge. His trial is scheduled to begin on May 13.

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