People support officer charged with homicide

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HUMMELSTOWN, Pa. - February 2, 2015 State Police say Hummelstown Police Officer Lisa Mearkle allegedly shot David Kassick twice in the back. Kassick died and Mearkle has been charged with homicide. In June, she entered a plea of not guilty. She is expected back in court in November. Some people are standing behind her. Others are showing their support for Kassick's family.

Sunday Kassick's family and friends gathered to host a vigil for him.
“This kind of stuff brings it back out. The family all pretty much is still grieving. It happened so fast and so suddenly and no one was expecting this. It’s hard to deal with," said Dale Kassick, David's brother.

It has been six months since the shooting. The vigil also combated a fundraiser being held for Mearkle.
“The fundraiser at Chick’s Tavern really struck a chord with folks. It seems like there is quite a bit of outrage over the fact Chick’s is hosting this event," said Andy Hoover from Hummelstown for Accountability.

Chick's Tavern held a pig roast Sunday. Proceeds from the ten dollar ticket will go toward Mearkle's defense.
“We’re going to generate as much money as we can for her defense so that she gets a fair trial," said  Chris Hunt from Hunt for Justice.

Hunt for Justice is a non-profit based in St. Louis, Missouri.

"It’s an organization that is dedicated to assisting police officers and their families in times of need," explained Hunt.

Hundreds of people attended the fundraiser.

"I totally understand that this is a polarizing issue but I also understand that a community sometimes really needs somebody or someone to step up and take the lead in these things so they feel comfortable coming out and showing support," said Hunt.

Across the street, from Chick's Tavern, at the vigil, Kassick supporters say they want a fair trial too.

"“We support the right to do process. We support the fact someone is innocent until proven guilty. Lisa Mearkle gave up her livelihood when she chose to pull the trigger and kill David Kassik," said Hoover.

There is video, of the shooting, a judge has ordered it not be released until the trial.


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