BOONE COUNTY, Ind. – The Boone County Prosecutor’s Office has dismissed all charges against a man in connection with a deadly 2016 crash.
Jack Henry Kaplan had faced ten counts; investigators had accused him of switching places with James Dupler to make it look like Dupler was driving the vehicle.
Dupler died as a result of his injuries, and police arrested Kaplan in 2018 based on evidence from the original crash reconstruction.
However, investigators amended their report in August 2021. The new crash reconstruction report reversed the original conclusion and determined that it was “more likely than not” that Dupler—not Kaplan—had been the driver.
The prosecutor’s office hired a private expert to review the new evidence; the private expert also concluded that Dupler was likely the driver.
As a result, the prosecutor’s office dropped the case against Kaplan:
Based upon these developments, the case must be dismissed due to lack of probable cause to believe that Kaplan was the driver of the vehicle. As Prosecutors, we our bound by the Indiana Rules of Professional Conduct which state under the Special Responsibilities of a Prosecutor the following:
The Prosecutor in a criminal case shall refrain from prosecuting a charge that the prosecutor knows is not supported by probable cause.
The crash was reported around 2 a.m. on Oct. 20, 2016. The vehicle had gone off the south side of County Road 300S and slammed into a tree.
Kaplan survived while Dupler suffered multiple injuries, including a “nonsurvivable traumatic head injury,” according to court documents.
Both men had been drinking at the Stacked Pickle before the crash, police said, and Kaplan had been driving at one point. He told police they’d switched after Kaplan realized he was too drunk to be behind the wheel.
In court documents, police said that Kaplan had several inconsistencies in his account of the events. Investigators also said he waited nearly 40 minutes at the scene before calling his father to report the crash instead of calling 911.