The Norman Transcript

Headlines

March 16, 2014

Fighting for freedom: Former U.S. soldier paroled, released Friday

(Continued)

NORMAN —

After time for hugs and embraces, the Behenna caravan left Fort Leavenworth and made the fairly short drive to Kansas City. Michael got his first taste of freedom in the form of local barbecue. Michael and his brothers Brett and Curtis were reunited at Curtis’ apartment where he is staying as he goes through medical school.

Scott said it has been a day of renewed experiences for Michael. 

At a Fort Leavenworth recreation center, Michael sat in a chair and said it was the most comfortable he’s sat on in five years. At the barbecue restaurant, he enjoyed the taste of his lunch and had a bite here and there from others’ plates. At his brother’s apartment, he had a conversation with family members while he laid on the mattress, which was quite a change from the one in his cell in the Fort Leavenworth Disciplinary Barracks. 

Once they crossed the Oklahoma state line, a second group of Patriot Guard Riders would escort them from Blackwell to Edmond, where many members of the community have showed their support for Michael in various ways. 

Scott said somewhere, sometime Friday, prosecution expert witness Dr. Herbert MacDonell would be making a toast to Michael.

During the trial, MacDonell told military prosecutors the only logical explanation for what happened was that Mansur had to be standing, reaching for Behenna’s gun when he was shot. This contradicted the prosecution’s theory that Mansur was executed while seated on a rock.

Behenna was told by superiors to release Mansur to his village after he was questioned about a roadside bombing that killed soldiers in Behenna’s unit. Behenna decided to stop along the way and further interrogate Mansur, according to court testimony.

Behenna testified that while he was interrogating Mansur he turned his head toward his interpreter, and when he did, Mansur lunged for his gun. Behenna fired a controlled pair of shots. 

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Headlines
  • Briarwood Elementary Briarwood, Plaza Towers buildings set to open for school year

    MOORE — Briarwood and Plaza Towers elementary students and teachers will no longer be visitors in the hallways and classrooms of their temporary schools this 2014-2015 school year. Displaced and forced to relocate after the May 2013 ...

    August 2, 2014 2 Photos

  • Cooler summer comes after dry spring statewide

    August made a gentle entry this year — no triple-digit temperatures or out-of-control wildfires. Instead, a bright sun slowly cleared the clouds and warmed the day back to summer weather after a few days of what had felt like an early ...

    August 2, 2014

  • Former teacher adores ‘Red Rudy’ Impala

    For some, transportation needs to be more than just a boxy vehicle that takes you from place to place. Former Norman High School Spanish language teacher Kelly Adams is one of those. In addition to her daily driver, a big SUV, she also ...

    August 2, 2014

  • Inmate health costs rising, forcing prisons to scramble for solutions

    OKLAHOMA CITY — Taxpayers forked over nearly $1 million last year to buy inhalers to treat asthma and emphysema among inmates in state prisons. In the meantime, the state also paid for 530,647 inmate prescriptions....

    August 2, 2014

  • Town changed, even with girls’ killer behind bars

    WELEETKA — Folks once settled in this sleepy central Oklahoma town to get away from the crime and hubbub of big-city life. Many residents didn’t bolt their doors or draw their shades at night. Most here never worried about people like ...

    August 2, 2014

  • Teachers from Spain begin arriving in Oklahoma

    TULSA — Teachers recruited from Spain by a Tulsa school district have started to arrive in Oklahoma for the new academic year. The Tulsa World reports (http://bit.ly/1rS1Q2a ) four of the 11 expected educators arrived Thursday in ...

    August 2, 2014

  • Driver killed after container falls on truck named

    OKLAHOMA CITY — Police have identified the person killed after a shipping container was knocked from an Oklahoma National Guard vehicle and landed on a pickup truck....

    August 2, 2014

  • Fire chief in central Oklahoma city resigns

    EDMOND — A fire chief in a central Oklahoma city has submitted his resignation....

    August 2, 2014

  • Judge continues action in sexual assault case

    OKLAHOMA CITY — A judge has found probable cause to continue criminal proceedings against an Oklahoma man accused of sexually assaulting boys and girls in Kenya. Nineteen-year-old Matthew Lane Durham, of Edmond, is accused of sexually ...

    August 2, 2014

  • Trial postponed in Duncan baseball player death

    DUNCAN — The trial for a man charged in the fatal shooting of an Australian baseball player has been postponed until April....

    August 2, 2014