A man serving prison time for paralyzing a police officer was the key witness Thursday in the trial of a man accused of shooting a sheriff's major in the face.
John Waldenville was off-duty and carrying a $6,000 bank deposit for Cattlemen's Steakhouse when he was shot in May 2011.
Joshua Rinken testified that during jailhouse conversations Christopher Baker admitted to the shooting. During one conversation, Baker recounted running up behind Waldenville and trying to grab bank bags from the lawman, Rinken said.
A “tussle” ensued, Rinken said Baker told him.
“As he was turning around, he looked like he was reaching for his gun,” Rinken testified Baker said.
“I had to shoot him … if I didn't I would be a memory today,” Rinken said Baker told him.
Rinken also testified that Baker said he panicked the day after the shooting when he saw police outside his girlfriend's apartment complex.
Rinken said Baker told him he put on a skirt, wig and high-heeled shoes to avoid being identified when he and his girlfriend drove past the guard station to another location.
Rinken, 29, of Norman, was sentenced in July to 10 years in prison and 10 years probation for his role in the Feb. 15, 2011, attack on Oklahoma City police officer Chad Peery.
As part of a plea agreement, Rinken agreed to testify against Baker, 30, of Oklahoma City, who is charged with shooting and robbing Waldenville after he left Cattlemen's Steakhouse to make a bank deposit just after midnight May 21, 2011.
Joshua Rinken is imprisoned for breaking Chad Peery's neck when the off-duty Oklahoma City police officer tried to escort him from a bar.