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Copperton man pleads to misdemeanor in killing

Steven Lovendahl, who at one time was facing a charge of first-degree felony murder, on Friday pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor in connection with the slaying of his carpet installer.

Lovendahl, 32, entered a guilty plea to negligent homicide, a class A misdemeanor, for shooting Kevin Sheperd to death on Aug. 11, 2007.

Lovendahl is set to be sentenced Oct. 7 by 3rd District Judge Robert Adkins.

Court documents say the Sheperd and two other men were laying carpet in Lovendahl's Copperton home, and the men later went to a tavern for drinks with some women. They left, returned to Lovendahl's home and Sheperd reportedly attacked Lovendahl's girlfriend. Lovendahl went inside the house, got a handgun and shot Sheperd in the arm.

However, the bullet penetrated his body and his spine. Sheperd's friends put him in a car and tried to take him to a hospital, but he died en route.

A class A misdemeanor carries a potential sentence of up to a year in jail.