The Norman Transcript

State/Region

May 18, 2014

Tulsa DA won’t seek death penalty in slayings

TULSA, Okla. — The Tulsa County District Attorney’s Office will not seek the death penalty against two brothers who are facing separate jury trials in a quadruple homicide case.

First Assistant District Attorney Doug Drummond told the Tulsa World (http://bit.ly/TeVdvO ) on Friday that James Poore, 33, and Cedric Poore, 40, will not face the possibility of the death penalty on four counts of first-degree murder and two counts of robbery with a firearm.

The Tulsa men are scheduled to be formally arraigned on Monday, when separate trial dates are likely to be scheduled by District Judge William Kellough.

The brothers are charged in the fatal shootings of Julie Jackson, Misty Nunley, Rebeika Powell and Kayetie Powell Melchor, on Jan. 7, 2013, at an apartment complex.

The four women’s bodies were found in Powell’s apartment. They had been shot, and each woman’s hands had been bound behind her back, investigators reported.

“The crimes are tragic and it has emotionally impacted each of the families who lost loved ones,” Drummond said. “But, at the end of the day, we must objectively consider a wide variety of factors, including the admissible evidence as well as the legal issues involved.

“After doing that objective analysis, we are declining to file a bill of particulars, seeking the death penalty,” he added.

With the death penalty excluded, the other possible punishments for first-degree murder are life in prison and life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Drummond said he talked to the victims’ families regarding the decision.

“There is no question that the family members believe the death penalty is certainly a viable option given what has happened,” Drummond said. “But they understand our reasoning. Ultimately, they want justice for what happened.”

Rebeika Powell and Kayetie Powell Melchor’s mother, Charon Powell, said the victims’ families made the decision jointly.

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