Susan Lorincz pleads not guilty in fatal shooting of Ajike Owens


(FLORIDA) — Susan Lorincz, the woman charged with manslaughter in the fatal shooting her neighbor Ajike “AJ” Owens on June 2 in Ocala, Florida, pleaded not guilty on Monday, her attorney Amanda Sizemore confirmed to ABC News.

Lorincz waived her right to an arraignment, which was scheduled for Tuesday, according to ABC affiliate in Ocala, Florida WCJB.

Lorincz, who is white, was arrested on June 6 and charged with first-degree manslaughter, which is punishable by up to 30 years in prison if she is convicted, according to the Marion County Sheriff’s Office. She was also charged with culpable negligence, battery and two counts of assault.

According to a June 6 statement from the Marion County Sheriff’s Office, Lorincz shot Owens, a Black mother of four, through a door after Owens went to speak with Lorincz about a dispute over Owens’ children playing near Lorincz’s home.

Lorincz was held on $150,000 bond and remains in custody. Court records show Lorcinz’s pretrial hearing is scheduled for Nov. 2, while jury selection in her case is expected to begin on Nov. 13.

Sizemore declined to comment on the charges that her client is facing.

Body camera footage released on July 3 from the Marion County Sheriff’s Office showed seven incidents between Feb. 25, 2022 and April 25 2023 in which Lorincz called sheriff’s deputies to complain about neighborhood children, including Owens’ children, playing near her home.

According to the June 6 statement released by the sheriff’s office, Lorincz claimed she was acting in “self-defense” during her interview, but through the investigation “detectives were able to establish that Lorincz’s actions were not justifiable under Florida law.”

Owens’ family called on prosecutors to upgrade the charges against Lorincz from manslaughter to second-degree murder during a virtual press conference on June 27.

Florida State Attorney William “Bill” Gladson said on June 26 there was insufficient evidence to prove such a charge in court.

“As deplorable as the defendant’s actions were in this case, there is insufficient evidence to prove this specific and required element of second-degree murder,” Gladson said.

ABC News reached out to attorneys representing the Owens family for further comment.

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