An arrest warrant has been issued for a legal assistant accused of threatening a public defender after he ended a relationship with the assistant’s boss, records show.
Tiffany Michelle McKinnis, 34, of Oklahoma City, was charged Jan. 30 in Oklahoma County District Court with making obscene, threatening or harassing phone calls, which is a misdemeanor.
A judge set her bail at $50,000.
McKinnis is accused of threatening Assistant Public Defender David McKenzie after he ended a romantic relationship last month with Oklahoma City attorney Holly Hefton.
McKinnis is Hefton’s assistant.
Hefton characterized McKenzie as abusive, and said he quit calling her early last month after about a year of dating. She said she was hurt and sad over the breakup.
“She saw how he treated me,” Hefton said of McKinnis. “I think she was just tired of seeing me in pain.”
McKenzie told police he received two phone calls from McKinnis about 4:25 a.m. on Jan. 12, according to a probable cause affidavit.
McKinnis is accused of leaving two voicemails on McKenzie’s phone in which she is heard cursing at McKenzie “and telling him she is going to harass him,” according to the affidavit.
“These messages were also threatening in nature,” a police investigator wrote in the affidavit.
The woman also called a third time and hung up, McKenzie said Thursday.
The public defender characterized McKinnis as a “multiple-convicted felon” who “has threatened my life.”
“I think she should be held without bail,” he said Thursday.
District Judge Ray C. Elliott set the bail for McKinnis at $50,000. Elliott cited her prior criminal record and recent incidents in which a prosecutor was shot in Texas and an Edmond man was charged with threatening a special judge in Oklahoma County.
McKinnis could not be reached for comment Thursday. Her attorney, Jeff Box, called the bail amount “excessive.”
“She said some stuff she shouldn’t have said,” Box said. “I don’t think she’s a threat to (McKenzie) or anybody else.”
Hefton said McKinnis called McKenzie without her knowledge.
“If she would have told me she was going to do something like this I would have told her not to do it,” Hefton said. “She feels horribly about it, that it has escalated into this type of situation.”
Cleveland County court records show McKinnis pleaded no contest in July 2004 to a misdemeanor assault and battery charge stemming from a “spanking incident” and received a 90-day suspended sentence.
McKinnis was originally charged with child abuse but prosecutors reduced the charge.
In July 1998, she pleaded guilty in Cleveland County to possession of marijuana with intent to distribute and possession of drug paraphernalia, court records show. She also pleaded guilty to a related charge and received a deferred sentence. Prosecutors dismissed two other charges, including possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony, according to court records.