Puna man charged in father’s murder to undergo mental evaluation

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A Puna man charged in connection with his father’s murder appeared in court Tuesday.

Forrest Kessler, 18, of Mountain View, was arrested for second-degree murder on Saturday, May 23, at a home in Fern Acres. He was charged Sunday afternoon.

According to court documents, Kessler and his dad, Jeffrey Kelly, 47, had gotten into an argument.

Investigators said Kessler shot Kelly in the chest with a pellet rifle. Kelly then fell to the floor, hit his head and stopped breathing. He was taken to Hilo Medical Center where he later died.

On Tuesday, a judge ordered Kessler to undergo a mental evaluation. His next court appearance is scheduled for July.

Kessler remains in custody, unable to post $250,000 bail.

Forrest Kessler
Forrest Kessler

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