The Norman Transcript


January 12, 2013

Defense attorneys want Tulsa slayings case tossed

TULSA, Okla. — Authorities never had probable cause to arrest one of the two men charged in April’s shooting rampage in Tulsa that left three people dead and two wounded, the suspect’s attorneys claimed Friday.

The 14-page motion filed in Tulsa district court by 33-year-old Alvin Watts’ public defenders argues that testimony given at a preliminary hearing last summer proved that police lacked enough specific evidence to arrest him.

But prosecutors said Friday they had enough evidence at the hearing to convince a Tulsa County special judge to order that Watts stand trial, and added that they would offer the same evidence before the trial judge.

Watts and 20-year-old Jake England are charged with three counts of first-degree murder in the Easter weekend shootings of William Allen, Bobby Clark and Dannaer Fields, who were killed as they walked near their homes in a predominantly black section of Tulsa. All five victims were black. Watts and England also face hate crime charges.

Both men pleaded not guilty at an arraignment this week. Prosecutors have announced they will seek the death penalty.

Watts’ motion argues that a Tulsa police detective who testified at the hearing last year admitted that the phone number that came into the department’s Crime Stoppers hotline after the shootings was assigned to England.

The detective also testified that the search warrant of England’s house did not mention Watts, and admitted that “he knew that Alvin Watts and Jacob England lived together, but could not tell the court when he learned that nor could he showed where he had ever documented this information,” the motion states.

Shena Burgess, the deputy chief public defender, declined to comment on the motion, saying it spoke for itself.

First Assistant District Attorney Doug Drummond called the defense motion typical, especially in a death penalty case.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
  • Junior Police Graduation First Junior Police Academy graduates

    The room went dark and a slideshow flipped through photos of children participating in the first Junior Police Academy as kids chattered excitedly, remembering what they had done over the past two weeks. Norman Police Department hosted ...

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • Officials say transparency lacking in Wal-Mart zoning

    Norman city staff recently admitted to withholding information from the public regarding a controversial zoning change in southeast Norman. If approved by the city council, the proposal will allow a Wal-Mart supercenter at Cedar Lane and ...

    July 25, 2014

  • Air Algerie jet crashes with 116 on board

    OUAGADOUGO, Burkina Faso — An Air Algerie jetliner carrying 116 people crashed Thursday in a rainstorm over restive Mali, and its wreckage was found near the border of neighboring Burkina Faso — the third major international aviation ...

    July 25, 2014

  • Nonprofit raises $3.9M-plus for new center

    The Center for Children and Families, a United Way of Norman partner agency, announced Thursday that it exceeded its public fundraising goal of $3.5 million and raised more than $3.9 million to complete the purchase and renovation of a ...

    July 25, 2014

  • Very bad week: Airline disasters come in a cluster

    WASHINGTON — Nearly 300 passengers perish when their plane is shot out of the sky. Airlines suspend flights to Israel’s largest airport after rocket attacks. Two airliners crash during storms. Aviation has suffered one of its worst weeks ...

    July 25, 2014

  • Police log

    Police responded to the following incidents Wednesday: · 5:58 a.m. indecent exposure, 100 block of West Comanche Street · 6:08 a.m. burglary in progress, 100 block of West Hayes Street · 8:09 a.m. larceny report, 100 ...

    July 25, 2014

  • Felonies filed

    The following people were charged with felony counts in the Cleveland County Court Clerk’s Office: · Angela Beth Mendinghall, 36, unauthorized use of a vehicle; driving with a canceled, suspended or revoked license · Daniel ...

    July 25, 2014

  • Immigrant children being placed with sponsors

    OKLAHOMA CITY — The federal government says more than 200 unaccompanied children in Oklahoma have been placed with sponsors so far this year. The federal government released a state-by-state breakdown Thursday of the numbers of ...

    July 25, 2014

  • OCU prepares to move law library downtown

    OKLAHOMA CITY — Oklahoma City University’s School of Law is moving its library into a historic building in downtown Oklahoma City....

    July 25, 2014

  • Grad to serve as delegate at camp

    William Long, 2014 Norman North High School graduate, recently represented Oklahoma as a delegate at the 2014 National Youth Science Camp. Long joined 100 other top high school graduates representing the United States and eight other ...

    July 25, 2014