John O’Keefe’s brother speaks about Karen Read mistrial in first interview, says “We know what happened”

DEDHAM – John O’Keefe’s brother spoke exclusively to WBZ-TV on Wednesday about Karen Read and what his family endured during the high-profile Massachusetts murder case that ended in a mistrial. Paul O’Keefe said “we know what happened,” and believes his brother’s death is being overshadowed by what he described as the “Karen Read show.”

Read is accused of hitting and killing John O’Keefea Boston police officer, with her SUV and leaving him to die during a snowstorm outside a Canton home in January 2022. Read’s attorneys argue she is the victim of a coverup and is being framed by several people, including law enforcement.

O’Keefe family reacts to Karen Read mistrial

The monthslong trial ended with a “starkly divided” hung jury on Monday. Prosecutors said they intend to re-try the case.

“The mistrial that happened the other day, obviously, it wasn’t ideal. But if we have to do it again, we will do it again,” Paul O’Keefe told WBZ-TV. “It’s just a bump in the road and like I said, we will do it again. We will do it as many times as we have to.”

Paul O’Keefe, brother of the late John O’Keefe, stares at Karen Read at her murder trial in Dedham Superior Court on Tuesday, May 7, 2024,

Stuart Cahill/The Boston Herald via AP, Pool

Paul O’Keefe was asked what he believes happened the night of his brother’s death.

Prosecutors say Read and John O’Keefe’s relationship had deteriorated in the months before his death. The night of O’Keefe’s death, Read left him a series of angry voicemailsincluding one where she says “John, I f—ing hate you.”

“We know what happened,” Paul O’Keefe said. “We know that Johnny and Karen were arguing, it was kind of towards the end of their relationship. Things weren’t well. They were drinking, and arguing and fighting, and in an intoxicated state of rage and jealousy, she just decided that she was going to do something about it.”

Paul O’Keefe says public “misinformed” about case

Members of the public have been misinformed about the case, Paul O’Keefe says. He added that is why he decided to speak out.

“A lot of the public was misinformed, because they were only getting one side of the story, and you know we didn’t come out and tell our side of the story or what we thought really happened. We’ve kept a low profile and been silent through this whole ordeal,” Paul O’Keefe said. “Now it’s time. Now it’s time for people to understand the truth.”

“This is about my brother”

Paul O’Keefe said that his family has received hateful messages from members of the “Free Karen Read” movement.

“Yelling, screaming, calling us names. To this day I don’t know what I did wrong,” he said. “I get messages all the time, through Facebook, or other ways of communication. Telling me that I’m a moron, I’m stupid, open my eyes and all this stuff. I don’t really care what people say to me. Because this isn’t about me. This is about my brother.”

Boston police officer John O’Keefe, who was killed in 2022. The photo was shown during the murder trial of his girlfriend, Karen Read.

CBS Boston

What Paul O’Keefe said to Karen Read

Paul O’Keefe also addressed an exchange he had in the courtroom with Read minutes after the mistrial was declared.

“Throughout the trial, she liked to turn and look at me and smirk. She has never once made eye contact with my wife, Erin. So when the mistrial was announced, she turned and looked right at Erin and gave her a smirk, and then went over and was hugging and celebrating to some extent,” Paul O’Keefe said. “And I just said, you know, ‘You are not done yet.'”

“It’s turned into the Karen Read show”

With the case gaining national attention and support growing for Read, Paul O’Keefe said his brother has been forgotten.

“All the time. It’s turned into the Karen Read show. She walks through a crowd that cheers her on. She goes out in public and takes pictures and signs autographs. She’s just living her life like nothing ever happened and meanwhile, my brother has been gone for almost 2 1/2 years,” he said. “I just want people to go back to who the victim is in this. It’s not her, it’s my brother.”

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