• McAlester, Oklahoma, man dies after crash in Pittsburg County

    FROM STAFF REPORTS | Updated: Tue, Jul 8, 2014

    Jerry Gragg, 78, of McAlester, died Tuesday after a crash in Pittsburg County.

  • Duncan schools OK purchase of tornado helmets

    BY THE ASSOCIATED PRESS | Published: Wed, Jun 25, 2014

    DUNCAN — The Duncan Board of Education has approved the purchase of 4,500 skateboard helmets for students and employees to wear in case of a tornado. The board spent $34,650 on the helmets with funds raised by the Cover Our Kids campaign in Duncan. The campaign was created in response to the May 2013 tornado in Moore, which killed seven schoolchildren. Superintendent Sherry Labyer says the helmets will be available for use during the upcoming school year. She tells a local newspaper that three sizes of helmets will be available for use in elementary through high school and for employees. Moore schools have already purchased helmets, and Chickasha is beginning its campaign to buy helmets for students.

  • Three die after separate water-related accidents in Oklahoma

    FROM STAFF REPORTS | Updated: Tue, Jun 17, 2014

    Michael Allen, 51, drowned in Shawnee Twin Lakes on Sunday, a medical examiner’s spokeswoman said. Cecilio Perez Vamarripa, 20, of Sherman, Texas, drowned Sunday in Lake Texoma after becoming fatigued, the Oklahoma Highway Patrol reported. An unnamed Altus girl died Tuesday after nearly drowning Monday in Lake Altus-Lugert.

  • Teen charged in Australian’s death due in court

    BY THE ASSOCIATED PRESS | Published: Tue, Jun 17, 2014

    DUNCAN — A teenager charged in the shooting death of an Oklahoma college baseball player from Australia is due in court. Sixteen-year-old James Francis Edwards Jr. is due in court Tuesday in Duncan. He’s charged with first-degree murder and accessory after the fact in the death of 22-year-old Chris Lane. Lane was shot while jogging along a tree-lined road in Duncan while visiting his girlfriend’s parents in August. Investigators say he was randomly targeted by “bored” teenagers. He had been preparing to enter his senior baseball season at East Central University in Ada. Prosecutors have said they’ll drop the first-degree murder charge against Edwards if he continues to testify against two other teens

  • $100M upgrade to add 250 jobs at Ada cement plant

    BY THE ASSOCIATED PRESS | Published: Mon, Jun 9, 2014

    ADA — A Massachusetts-based company has announced plans for a $100 million modernization project at a cement plant in Ada. Holcim US Inc. is awaiting approval from state environmental officials to begin the modernization project, said Robin DeCarlo, Holcim’s senior vice president for corporate communications. “We are expecting there will be approximately 250 temporary jobs during the modernization phase, which will have a direct and positive impact on the Ada economy,” DeCarlo said. “The modernization will increase our plant’s capacity in Ada by about 20 percent.” The Ada plant, which has about 120 workers, uses limestone from a nearby quarry to produce cement.

  • Man charged in fatal 2013 hit-and-run boat crash on Oklahoma lake

    BY THE ASSOCIATED PRESS | Published: Fri, Jun 6, 2014

    McALESTER — A McAlester man has been charged with first-degree manslaughter in a 2013 fatal hit-and-run crash on Lake Eufaula. A local newspaper reports that 31-year-old Ryan Shumway is accused of causing the death of 55-year-old Gary Lynn McIninch, of Oklahoma City, in the July 4, 2013, incident. Shumway is due in court on Monday for an initial court appearance. The Oklahoma Highway Patrol says McIninch fell into the lake after a ski boat hit his pontoon boat. Witnesses reported that the driver of the ski boat then landed atop another boat before driving away. Shumway turned himself into authorities after McIninch’s body was recovered from the lake.

  • Oklahoma man, woman accused of enabling child abuse

    BY THE ASSOCIATED PRESS | Published: Mon, May 19, 2014

    KONAWA — A man and woman have been arrested on suspicious of enabling child abuse after a video was posted on a social media site showing a teenager taking a running start and repeatedly kicking an 8-year-old boy in the head. A local newspaper reports that the 33-year-old woman and 28-year-old man were arrested last week after the video was posted to Instagram. Police say the teen is the woman’s son and the younger child is the man’s son. Police suspect the man shot the video while the woman looked on. A Seminole County judge set the man’s bond at $250,000 and the woman’s at $75,000. The teen was also arrested on suspicious of aggravated assault and is being held without bond at a juvenile detention

  • Oklahoma boy, 8, kicked in head; arrests made

    Published: Fri, May 16, 2014

    KONAWA (AP) — Police in Konawa say two adults and a teenager have been arrested for assault in the alleged kicking of an 8-year-old boy in the head while the child wore a football helmet. Police told The Ada News that the 28-year-old father of the victim, his 33-year-old girlfriend and the woman’s 15-year-old son were arrested after police were notified by the state Department of Human Services about the incident. Police say a video of the incident was posted on the social media site Instagram Wednesday, but was removed by Thursday. Assistant Police Chief Jason Teel told the newspaper that the 8-year-old has bruising to his neck and chest. Teel says the 15-year-old is being held at a juvenile detention facility.

  • Hearing delayed for teen charged in Duncan death

    BY THE ASSOCIATED PRESS | Updated: Tue, May 13, 2014

    DUNCAN — A hearing has been delayed for an Oklahoma teenager charged in the fatal shooting of an Australian baseball player.

  • UPDATE: Girl, 3, taken from McAlester, Oklahoma Walmart found safe in Texas

    FROM STAFF REPORTS | Updated: Fri, Apr 25, 2014

    Police say a 3-year-old girl taken from a McAlester, Oklahoma Walmart has been found. The FBI is investigating the case.

  • Durant hospital agrees to settle fraud case

    BY THE ASSOCIATED PRESS | Updated: Mon, Apr 21, 2014

    DURANT — A hospital in Durant and its parent company have agreed to pay $1.5 million to resolve claims alleging that an otolaryngologist billed the state’s Medicaid program for unnecessary sinus surgeries. According to the U.S. attorney’s office, the Medical Center of Southeastern Oklahoma and its parent company, Health Management Associates Inc., will pay $1,065,000 to the federal government and $435,000 to SoonerCare, the state’s Medicaid program. Federal prosecutors accused the hospital of health care fraud. A local newspaper reports the hospital is denying the allegations. In a statement, the hospital said it is not admitting any wrongdoing or liability and that it agreed to the settlement to avoid costly

  • Jury finds Oklahoma man mentally fit to stand trial

    BY THE ASSOCIATED PRESS | Published: Fri, Apr 18, 2014

    DUNCAN — A jury says an Oklahoma man charged in the death of a 16-year-old girl is mentally competent to stand trial. The Stephens County jury made its recommendation Thursday after hearing three days of testimony in the competency trial of Miles Bench. Prosecutors charged Bench with first-degree murder for the 2012 death of Velma teenager Braylee Henry. Defense attorneys had argued that Bench’s mental health has deteriorated since his arrest. They argued that Bench could eventually become competent through medication and rehabilitation. But prosecutors argued that Bench has shown his mental competence while in jail, including an escape attempt and intentional fasting that has led him to lose more than 100

  • Oklahoma jury to consider suspect’s mental state

    BY THE ASSOCIATED PRESS | Published: Thu, Apr 17, 2014

    DUNCAN — Closing arguments are set in a trial to determine the mental competency of a man accused of killing an Oklahoma teenager. The trial began this week in Stephens County for 23-year-old Miles Bench. Prosecutors want to seek the death penalty against Bench for the June 2012 death of 16-year-old Braylee Henry, but Bench’s attorneys say their client is mentally incompetent to stand trial. During proceedings Wednesday, prosecutors showed jurors video of Bench maneuvering his way out of a restraint last September in an escape attempt from jail. Prosecutors argue the video proves Bench’s competence. But a psychologist for the defense says the incident has no bearing on Bench’s current mental state because it

  • Le Flore County sheriff’s office investigates boy’s death

    BY THE ASSOCIATED PRESS | Published: Thu, Apr 3, 2014

    BOKOSHE — Authorities in eastern Oklahoma are investigating after a 9-year-old boy was shot to death at a home in Le Flore County. Undersheriff Kendall Morgan says the shooting occurred Wednesday afternoon at a home in Bokoshe. Morgan says authorities are investigating whether one of the boy’s siblings accidentally shot him. Authorities tell a local newspaper that the boy’s mother was also home at the time of the shooting. The sheriff’s office has not yet released the boy’s name. Morgan says deputies recovered a shotgun at the scene.

  • Body of man found near Durant is identified

    BY THE ASSOCIATED PRESS | Updated: Thu, Mar 27, 2014

    DURANT — The Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation says a the body of a man found near Canella Creek near Durant in Bryan County has been identified. The agency says the body is that of 32-year-old Steven Lee Sessums and that an autopsy has determined he was killed by blunt force trauma to the head and neck. He is believed to have died sometime Saturday. The body was found Monday by a passer-by who called authorities. The OSBI has arrested a suspect on a first-degree murder complaint in the case and says formal charges are pending. Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

  • Oklahoma teens plead not guilty in Australian's death

    BY THE ASSOCIATED PRESS | Updated: Thu, Mar 20, 2014

    DUNCAN — Two Oklahoma teenagers charged in the shooting death of an Australian baseball player in Oklahoma have pleaded not guilty and waived their right to a speedy trial.

  • Teens charged in death of Australian due in court

    BY THE ASSOCIATED PRESS | Published: Wed, Mar 12, 2014

    DUNCAN — Two Oklahoma teenagers charged in the shooting death of an Australian baseball player in Oklahoma are due in court. Eighteen-year-old Michael Dewayne Jones and 16-year-old Chancey Allen Luna are charged with first-degree murder in the death of Chris Lane and are due in court Wednesday for the completion of their preliminary hearing. Prosecutors say 22-year-old Lane was gunned down as he jogged last summer while visiting his girlfriend’s parents in Duncan, about 80 miles south of Oklahoma City. Lane, from Melbourne, Australia, was preparing for his senior season at East Central University when he died. Another teenager, 16-year-old James Francis Edwards Jr., agreed to testify against his

  • Whitesboro deaths ruled double homicide-suicide

    BY THE ASSOCIATED PRESS | Published: Mon, Mar 10, 2014

    WHITESBORO — Authorities say three people found dead in an eastern Oklahoma house fire died as a result of a double murder-suicide. LeFlore County Sheriff Rob Seale says the March 3 fire in Whitesboro was intentionally set by 30-year-old Jacob Custard. The sheriff says Custard killed his mother and stepfather before setting the house on fire then shooting himself. Seale says authorities may not be able to pinpoint a cause of death for 57-year-old Edith Custard and 80-year-old Lawrence Schlienz because their bodies were badly burned in the blaze. The sheriff said Jacob Custard had a history of mental health problems and had stopped taking his medication.

  • Oklahoma sheriff says 3 found dead in house fire

    BY THE ASSOCIATED PRESS | Published: Tue, Mar 4, 2014

    WHITESBORO — The LeFlore County Sheriff’s Office says three people have been found dead after authorities responded to a house fire outside the small town of Whitesboro in southeastern Oklahoma. The names of those who died in Monday’s fire have not been released and their bodies have been sent to the Oklahoma Medical Examiner’s Office for identification. The sheriff’s office says investigators are still trying to determine the cause of the blaze. A message seeking further details from the sheriff’s office was not immediately returned Tuesday, and an email seeking information from the medical examiner’s office on the victims wasn’t immediately answered.

  • Crews control grass fires along Interstate 40 in Shawnee, OK

    | Updated: Fri, Feb 28, 2014

    Crews were battling several fires along Interstate 40 in Shawnee on Friday afternoon. One fire caused damage at a boat dealership. A fire also was reported in Oklahoma City.