Overview.

Overview of the Case



  • John Knospler Jr., a Veteran Marine with 8 years of active service, left the Ranch where he was hunting with his Father and went to Casper for a change of scenery.

  • On the evening of Oct. 3, 2013, during a snow storm, he went to Rack's Gentlemenís Club, a Bar and Strip Joint featuring friendly Dancers.

  • Rack's has several surveillance cameras installed for monitoring the activity within the establishment, but none outside monitoring the parking lot.

  • Also present that evening was James Baldwin, celebrating his birthday with friends. Baldwin had been driven to Rack's by a friend and the friendís girlfriend. Baldwin's friend had to take his girlfriend home early, but would be back to pick up Baldwin later.

  • Knospler engaged in some conversation with Dancers and Bar Maids, showing them some pictures of his Marine buddies, stored on his cell-phone, some of who had been killed in action in the Middle East skirmishes of late.

  • During the evening Knospler went outside several times, to check that his car was not being tampered with, as he was a stranger in town.

  • Knospler embellished in telling some "war stories" where he mentioned "killing people" and added "just kidding" afterwards.

  • Some complaint regarding Knospler's stories and tone of conversation reached a club Bouncer, named Andujar.

  • Around 10:15 pm, Andujar approached Knospler, perhaps thinking the girls were asking for his help and intimated that Knospler was getting a little feisty and he, Andujar, "did not like to fight".

  • Knospler took the hint and said he was leaving anyway, threw a cigarette on the floor, said that's a joint, and left Rack's.

  • Knospler, intoxicated and not wanting to drive under the influence, went to his car "to sleep it off" in the parking lot.

  • Around midnight, Baldwin's friend had still not arrived and Andujar offered to call Baldwin a taxi cab to take Baldwin home. Baldwin, also intoxicated, rejected the offer saying in effect, he had a ride.

  • Shortly after that Baldwin left Rack's and Andujar watched from inside the entrance door as Baldwin went to the passenger's side door of a car with the headlights lights on, and the motor running. By this time it had been snowing for 4 to 5 hours and there was some accumulation of snow on the ground.

  • The car was parked such that the headlight beams were aimed perpendicular to the front of the building. From Andujar's perspective the car was located to his right. Inside the car Knospler was sleeping.

  • Andujar saw Baldwin try to open the passenger's door, it was locked, then Baldwin rapped on the window.

  • Andujar then saw Baldwin walk around to the driver's side door, and in moments Andujar said he saw Baldwin leaning into the car and Andujar thought the driver's side window was down.

  • Andujar could not see the driver's side window directly as it was angled away from him .

  • He then saw Baldwin fall to the ground.

  • Andujar turns away from the door to report that something is going on in the parking lot, then goes outside as the car is leaving the parking lot, to find Baldwin bleeding on the snow covered ground. Thinking Baldwin had been stabbed he goes back inside to alert everyone, and to get some towels, and to have someone call 911 and the police.

  • Knospler drives toward Casper and within a block or two of the Police Station is pulled over by Officer John Taylor who upon seeing the driver's side window broken out, asks, "What happened at the Bar", to which Knospler replies, "Someone tried to kill me."

  • Knospler was placed under investigative detention then in the police car he stated, "I acted in self defense only".

  • Knospler is taken into custody, interrogated, arrested and ultimately charged with second degree murder.

  • During the trial, the State's own hired expert witness, was the Defense's best witness, whose entire testimony supported Knospler's claim of Self Defense.

  • Knospler was found guilty, not on the strength of any physical evidence but rather on what the District Attorney called "Malice inferred by Knosplerís alleged statements inside the Bar"; statements made to Dancers or Bar Maids, two hours before.

  • Elsewhere on this Website are detailed accounts regarding the evidence, the investigations, the testimony, the States un-supported Theory, the verdict, the Jury's reactions, the newspaper accounts and the like.

  • This Website and its authors support Knospler's claims of Justifiable Legal Self Defense.

  • During after-trial Defense motions, Baldwin's Criminal Record became known. While it is not posted on this Website, it can be found on Face book linked to near the bottom of the Home Page.

  • Baldwin's Criminal Record, with regard to car theft, and Andujar's observations are all consistent with Knospler's account of the incident.