Posted on April 18, 2023

Court Documents Detail Charges Against Andrew Lester, Man Accused of Shooting Teenager Ralph Yarl

The Clay County Prosecutor’s Office on Monday evening filed charges against Andrew Lester in the shooting of Ralph Yarl.

Lester is charged with first-degree assault and armed criminal action.

Yarl was shot late on the evening of April 13th, 2023 at a home on Northeast 115th Terrace in Kansas City.

Yarl was picking up his siblings, but he went to Northeast 115th Street instead.

Police said Yarl was shot after he knocked on the home’s door.

In announcing his decision to file charges, Clay County Prosecutor Zachary Thompson said there was a “racial component to the case.”


Officers arrived at the address at around 9:52 p.m. on Thursday night.


{snip} Officers approached and observed the front storm door glass shattered with Lester standing inside.


A witness said they heard an unknown vehicle pull into the driveway of Lester’s address. The witness “thought it was odd for their elderly neighbor to have a visitor this late at night” {snip}


The probable cause said Lester stated he picked up his gun before responding to the door. Lester told authorities he believed someone was attempting to break inside his house.

He said he shot twice within seconds of opening the door and no words were exchanged.

Lester said it was “the last thing he wanted to do” but was “scared to death” because of Yarl’s size and his age.

The probable cause states Lester believes he was protecting himself, but later expressed concern for the victim.