Man charged with murder in Lexington shooting pleads not guilty

Donald Owen Roark Jr.
Donald Owen Roark Jr. Fayette County jail

The man charged with murder in Lexington’s second shooting death of 2016 had a not guilty plea entered on his behalf Monday afternoon in arraignment at Fayette County District Court.

Donald Owen Roark Jr., 25, of Lexington was charged with murder and tampering with evidence about 13 hours after Corenz White, 28, was found collapsed Sunday at University Trails apartments on Red Mile Road.

White had been shot in the chest and was found by police.

Roark and White were friends, White’s family said.

White’s mother, Michelle Schooler, said there are no winners when young men are “playing around with guns.” She said she didn’t understand why so many young men think they need to be armed.

“I have to bury my baby,” Schooler said. She also said that with Roark incarcerated, his family is losing him too.

Schooler said White was a good guy and was loved by many people.

“I didn’t realize he had so many friends,” she said.

White didn’t live at the apartments where he was found, his family said.

Roark appeared in court by video from the jail. Fayette District Judge T. Bruce Bell didn’t set a bond.