Many remember Shane Breedlove as the DJ at KC’s Time Out Lounge but those who knew him best say he was much more than that. He was a son, a brother, a father and a friend to many who have all been impacted by his tragic death.
It was July 19th, 2015 — Breedlove was walking to work when he was gunned down in a drive-by shooting. Days after the deadly gunfire three men were arrested for murder but ultimately those charges were dropped.
Confident on and off the stage, Breedlove was kind natured and mild-mannered. A teddy bear by most accounts so how the beloved DJ ended up murdered is a question detectives with Evansville police are actively working to answer.
“The only way I thought Shane could get in trouble was with women,” says Carole Cleveland. Breedlove’s mother laughs remembering her youngest son who was often in the spotlight. “He could sing so well he had a beautiful voice.”
If he wasn’t behind the mic you could bet on finding Breedlove at KC’s Time Out Lounge making sure the crowd was having a good time.
“He was self-taught, just come natural, all of it came natural,” says Cleveland.
Self-taught at an early age Breedlove’s love for music and entertaining turned into a career in his adult life. Even at the bar, he served as more than just the DJ.
“Not only was he the singer and a band member he was always helping in the birdcage he was their sound guy,” says Cleveland.
So who would want to kill Breedlove? It’s the question Evansville Police have been working to answer for more than four years now.
“EPD does not consider the case a cold case they’ll be the first to tell you that,” says Cleveland.
On that Sunday in July as the sun went down the night was coming to life and Breedlove was getting ready for work. He would have to walk to work that night as his girlfriend was borrowing his car. But Breedlove never made it to KC’s. He was murdered while walking down Washington Ave in an apparent drive-by shooting.
His mother remembers getting the phone call. “I didn’t fall immediately to pieces it was right at bedtime, so I was signaling to my husband get up, get up, we got to go see what’s going on,” says Cleveland. “I did not get the final word that yes, it was Shane and yes, he is dead until I was on the bridge headed for Evansville.”
About two weeks later three men were arrested and charged with murder. Derrick Murray, Bobby John Handegard, and Bobby Michael Handegard all behind bars.
It seemed like justice. However, two months later, Breedlove’s family and friends were hit with a major blow upon learning the charges were dropped citing a lack of evidence. 44News’ cameras were rolling when the Handegards were released, the father and son declined to comment.
The only motive for the murder presented publicly was that Breedlove testified in a trial after being witness to a fight at KC’s. The defendant happened to be a business partner to the elder Handegard but ultimately the jury returned a not-guilty verdict in that case.
Evansville Police say there were two independent statements naming the father and son in Breedlove’s murder but at least one of the individuals re-canted on information they provided.
The wavering cooperation coupled with lack of evidence has left Breedlove’s murder unsolved.
Now, his family is left with pictures, memories and a special necklace. In almost every picture you’ll see of Breedlove he’s wearing a simple black cross, something his daughter now finds great comfort in.
“Every time she comes here to spend the night, she wants to wear her daddy’s cross,” says Cleveland.
Breedlove’s mom says there is no book on grieving. There’s a box full of things from fundraisers and events remembering Breedlove. The box sits at the bottom of the stairs and it been there for years — Cleveland can’t bring herself to move it. But maybe one day that box can be put away just like the people responsible for murdering her son.
“We’re going to have justice, we are not going to give up. We are going to keep pushing and I just know their day of reckoning is going to come,” says Cleveland.
The detective assigned to Breedlove’s case is determined to arrest whoever is responsible for his death. EPD is looking for that big break hoping conscience catches up to whoever can help solve this murder.
Anyone with information can contact EPD or We-Tip Hotline.