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Stykes’ case remains active

GEORGETOWN – Tommy Lee Lopez, the man who was named a person of interest in the Brittany Stykes murder investigation, has been set free after spending time in a Kentucky jail. He was released in December, following Christmas Day.

Reports indicate that an ex-girlfriend claimed Lopez had shot Stykes. Documents indicate she said she was with Lopez at the time of the shooting. She made further claims that Lopez had received two payments of $10,000 for the murder.

Lopez has not been cleared of anything in the Stykes case according to Assistant Prosecutor Zac Corbin.

“He has not been cleared and if that is what you classify as a ‘person of interest’ then yes,” Corbin said. “We are actively investigating every single day to bring someone to justice in this case. There is no case at this point that I would love to see solved more than this one and we work hard everyday to do that. I hope 2016 will bring us an indictment and a conviction, but I can’t say or put a time line on it.”

Stykes was found dead in her Jeep vehicle off of US Route 68 on the evening of Aug. 28, 2013. She was just 22-years-old, and an autopsy later found that she was 17-weeks pregnant.

Stykes young daughter Aubree, then just 14-months old, who was in the car when her mother died, was found alive but had a head wound from a bullet that grazed her. Stykes was pronounced dead at the scene of the crime. Her car was found about a half a mile from the intersection of US 68 and Gooselick Road, between Ripley and Georgetown.

“Homicides are obviously a priority and there is no case I would like to see solved than this one,” Corbin said. “It is going to receive all the attention and work we can give it so that we can see it brought to court and hold someone accountable for Brittany’s death. We have worked with the family, I cannot even image what the Dotson’s have gone through. We will see someone brought to justice and it will be a priority until we are ultimately successful.”

Corbin said the prosecution does not want to charge the wrong person and they want to make sure when they charge the person they can get a conviction as the result in the pursuit of justice.

“It does us no good for us to run something through a Grand Jury and try to get an indictment when we can’t ultimately go into court and prove beyond a reasonable doubt,” Corbin said. “I understand the public wants to see this case solved, we do too, but we cannot ethically or would it be reasonable or responsible to charge someone when we cannot prove it. We have got to have the evidence to back it up to support a conviction on that, and when we have that you will see someone charged.”

Brittany and Aubree Stykes are shown in a photo taken shortly before the tragic event in 2013. and Aubree Stykes are shown in a photo taken shortly before the tragic event in 2013.

By Brian Durham

Reach Brian Durham at 937-378-6161 or on Twitter @brianD1738.

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