• Appeals court turns away portion of Tulsa County appeal in jail death lawsuit

    BY CURTIS KILLMAN, Tulsa World | Published: Thu, Sep 10, 2015

    DENVER — A federal lawsuit that includes evidence of state procedural violations at the Tulsa Jail and allegations of collusion by jail workers has survived a legal procedural challenge. The 10th Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver on Monday found that Sheriff Stanley Glanz could not be held personally liable in a lawsuit filed on behalf of a man who hung himself in the Tulsa Jail, although the case against him in his official capacity could resume at the district court level. The lawsuit was filed in 2011 by Carolyn Cox on behalf of Charles Jernegan, who committed suicide in 2009 while being incarcerated in the Tulsa Jail.

  • Gender pay gap: Tulsa among bottom 10 metro areas for equitable income

    BY JOHN STANCAVAGE, Tulsa World | Published: Thu, Sep 10, 2015

    Tulsa’s primary business — energy — hasn’t changed much over the past few decades, and apparently neither has its pay practices for men and women. A new study ranks Tulsa among the bottom 10 metro areas in the nation for equitable pay for both sexes. In 2013, the median earnings of Tulsa women ($23,684) were only 65.5 percent of what area men took home, the 89th worst comparison  in a report by storage solutions firm   SpareFoot.com .

  • Sen. Jim Inhofe an 'animal serial killer,' SHARK spokesman says

    BY RANDY KREHBIEL, Tulsa World | Published: Thu, Sep 10, 2015

    U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe is an "animal terrorist" and "animal serial killer" whose planned pigeon shoot in southwest Oklahoma this weekend violates state animal abuse laws, self-described animal protection advocate Steve Hindi said Thursday morning in Tulsa. "There are so many things Sen. Inhofe could do for the people of Oklahoma," Hindi said during a press conference outside the Utica Square-area building that houses Inhofe's local office. "Instead, he and his sick, twisted guests are going to blast pigeons." Hindi said Inhofe "says he's a Christian, but he's a Christian in the same way Osama bin Laden claimed to be a Muslim."

  • Hero in any language: Tulsa 10-year-old whose translation skills helped save sister receives awards

    BY STACY RYBURN, Tulsa World | Published: Wed, Sep 9, 2015

    Not every 10-year-old gets recognized by his city for bravery, and not every person stays calm in a dire situation. Jaime Torres Jr. has done both. On July 5, Jaime’s 3-year-old sister, Maria, suddenly passed out and stopped breathing. Jaime took it upon himself to call 911, and while on the line, he translated the EMSA dispatcher’s instructions to his parents, Elsa and Jaime Torres Sr.

  • U.S. Rep. Jim Bridenstine continues push to defund Planned Parenthood

    BY RANDY KREHBIEL, Tulsa World | Published: Wed, Sep 9, 2015

    First District Congressman Jim Bridenstine is among almost 30 House Republicans who say they won't vote for any budget bill that doesn't cut off funding to Planned Parenthood, Bridenstine confirmed Wednesday. "The continued funding of Planned Parenthood is an example of the flawed (legislative) process," Bridenstine said in a written statement. "A majority of the representatives of the people would like to see it defunded." The Huffington Post reported Tuesday that Bridenstine was one of 28 GOP lawmakers, all male, to sign a letter pledging opposition to any spending authorization that allows federal funds to go to Planned Parenthood, a nonprofit organization that provides abortions and other health services to low-income women.

  • Tulsa police far short on academy recruits despite call for more officers

    BY JARREL WADE, Tulsa World | Published: Tue, Sep 8, 2015

    The Tulsa Police Department is coming up short on recruits for its training academies despite a deep need for officers, police officials told city councilors Tuesday. The department's next academy is funded to add 30 officers to the ranks, but with less than three weeks to go, it has only 20 recruits ready to become officers, said TPD Maj. Ryan Perkins. "I'm gravely concerned about where we're going to be on recruiting numbers," Perkins said. "You can throw all the money in the world at me. If we don't have the applicants, I'm not going to be able to fix that."

  • Man shot by Oklahoma Highway Patrol trooper booked into jail

    FROM STAFF REPORTS | Updated: Fri, Sep 4, 2015

    Brandon James Wooten was booked into the Noble County jail after leading troopers on a car chase. Wooten was shot by a trooper and taken to a Tulsa hospital before his arrest.

  • Man charged with raping, beating ex-girlfriend is named Tulsa's Most Wanted fugitive

    BY KYLE HINCHEY, Tulsa World | Published: Thu, Sep 3, 2015

    A man who allegedly attacked his ex-girlfriend before raping her in July has been named as the Tulsa Police Department's Most Wanted fugitive. Jaune Antonio Johnson, 40, was charged in August with domestic assault and battery resulting in great bodily harm, domestic assault and battery — second offense, domestic assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, kidnapping and first-degree rape. An arrest warrant carrying $200,000 bail also was issued for Johnson, who remained at large Thursday.

  • Former caregiver for foster families arrested on child porn complaints

    BY KYLE HINCHEY, Tulsa World | Published: Thu, Sep 3, 2015

    A monthlong undercover investigation led to the arrest of a Tulsa man accused of sharing videos of child pornography on the Internet. Timothy Paul Cheatwood, 44, was booked into the Tulsa Jail on complaints of distributing child pornography and violating the Oklahoma Computer Crimes Act. His bond was set at $10,500. The investigation began in early August when an undercover agent with the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation connected to a peer-to-peer network using a program on his computer, according to an arrest report.

  • Demoted high-ranking Tulsa Sheriff's Office official has resigned, fourth to leave since Eric Harris shooting

    BY COREY JONES, Tulsa World | Published: Wed, Sep 2, 2015

    Another official at the Tulsa County Sheriff's Office has resigned, becoming the fourth to leave since former Reserve Deputy Robert Bates fatally shot Eric Harris in early April. Deputy Billy McKelvey resigned effective Aug. 31, according to county personnel records. The move comes two months after he was demoted from the rank of captain, the outcome of an internal job performance review. Shena Burgess, his attorney, said McKelvey is moving on to a position in the private sector. She said her client put in retirement paperwork a few weeks ago.

  • Two arrested in fatal shooting of woman found dead in Camaro at Tulsa intersection

    BY PAIGHTEN HARKINS, Tulsa World | Published: Wed, Sep 2, 2015

    Two men were arrested Tuesday night in connection with the death of a woman who was shot in a car at a Tulsa intersection. Mario Gallegos, 23, and Juan Pablo Ruiz-Olvera, 24, were arrested on complaints of first-degree murder in the death of Juanita Engarcia Ibarra, 32, police said late Tuesday. Engarcia Ibarra was found dead in a red Chevorlet Camaro  that was stopped in the intersection of Fourth Street and Memorial Drive. Homicide Sgt. Dave Walker said she was shot by someone outside the driver’s door.

  • Hearings held in Oklahoma City, Tulsa on changes to Oklahoma’s forfeiture law

    BY SEAN MURPHY Associated Press  | Updated: Tue, Sep 1, 2015

    Oklahoma laws that allow law enforcement to seize money and property they believe are linked to criminal activity are ripe for abuse and should have safeguards so assets aren't seized from innocent people, experts told lawmakers Tuesday. A proposed bill would require a conviction and increase the amount of evidence authorities need to seize property.

  • Tulsa man pleads guilty to murder for setting house fire that killed 5-year-old

    BY ARIANNA PICKARD, Tulsa World | Published: Tue, Sep 1, 2015

    A man accused of igniting a house fire that caused a 5-year-old’s death from smoke inhalation pleaded guilty to murder Tuesday. Tulsa County District Judge William LaFortune dismissed the potential jurors who were set to hear the trial of Steven Lewis Clement, 36, after the defendant entered a blind guilty plea to one count of first-degree murder while in the commission of the felony crime of arson and one count of endangering human life during arson. Jury selection had not been completed when Clement entered the plea.

  • Critical figure in leaked Robert Bates probe from 2009 appears before grand jury

    BY COREY JONES, Tulsa World | Published: Tue, Sep 1, 2015

    A murder defendant turned material witness testified Tuesday morning for grand jurors investigating the Tulsa County Sheriff’s Office. Warren Crittenden is a critical figure in a 2009 internal probe into former Tulsa County Reserve Deputy Robert Bates. Crittenden, a corporal in internal affairs at the time, told an investigator he felt pressured to sign off on memorandums he didn’t write. The memos stated Bates was capable of performing the functions of a patrol deputy and should be granted advanced reserve status based on the “outstanding ability” he had shown in the field.

  • Radioactive chemical spill occurred last fall at University of Tulsa, officials announce

    BY PAIGHTEN HARKINS, Tulsa World | Published: Mon, Aug 31, 2015

    Authorities are working to clean up a year-old radioactive chemical spill on the University of Tulsa’s north research campus that was just brought to university officials’ attention last week. Tracerco, a company contracted through TU, spilled a small amount of the radioactive isotope cesium-137 in the Process Building on TU’s North Campus in the fall 2014 semester, but university officials just learned of the spill Aug. 25, university spokeswoman Mona Chamberlin said. After university officials learned of the spill, they restricted access to the building and notified the Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality, which has since been investigating. University officials sent a campus-wide email about the spill on Monday.

  • Rep. Jim Bridenstine recognized for leadership on space issues

    BY RANDY KREHBIEL, Tulsa World | Published: Mon, Aug 31, 2015

    In the 1st District, U.S. Rep. Jim Bridenstine is known for his iconoclastic conservatism and willingness to challenge the status quo. In Washington, he is known as one of the few people paying much attention to the nation’s space satellite programs. It’s a technical subject, unglamorous and unlikely to make headlines in anything except a few wonky niche publications. As Bridenstine says, “This is the kind of stuff that won’t get you elected and folks back home don’t care about.”

  • What the media, public didn't see when Katrina victims arrived in Oklahoma

    BY MICHAEL OVERALL, Tulsa World | Published: Mon, Aug 31, 2015

    Rushing to Muskogee that afternoon — after a frantic phone call from an editor who didn’t seem to care about the laws of physics, much less the laws of the road, as far as how long it would realistically take to get there — I didn’t think I was going to make it in time. The buses from New Orleans were reportedly getting close, if they hadn’t already arrived, and the evacuees would soon be unloaded, checked-in and resting comfortably in their new dormitories. Or so I thought. Instead, I got to stand around for several hours chatting with Red Cross volunteers, all of us getting wet, then dry, then wet again from scattered rain showers. The weather cleared long enough to give us a spectacular sunset, and after dark we listened to cicadas sing to each other across the grassy fields of Camp Gruber, a National Guard base where the federal government was sending 1,500 people left homeless by Hurricane Katrina. Officials would periodically give the press an update on the whereabouts of those buses — telling us they were 15 minutes away, or an hour, or 45 minutes, or just now crossing the Red River, or passing through Dallas. But in fact, nobody had the slightest idea where the buses were, until suddenly, well after dark on the first Saturday of September 2005, they finally pulled through the gate.

  • WPX Energy announces $185 million asset sale

    BY CASEY SMITH, Tulsa World | Published: Mon, Aug 31, 2015

    Tulsa-based domestic energy producer WPX Energy will execute an $185 million asset sale, the proceeds of which will be used to start paying down debt from its recent purchase of RKI Exploration & Production LLC. WPX Energy announced Monday that it has agreed to sell a North Dakota gathering system for approximately $185 million to a private equity fund managed by the Ares EIF Group, a subsidiary of Ares Management LP.  The parties expect to close the transaction in approximately 60 days. The sale is part of WPX’s deleveraging plan targeting $400 million-$500 million in divestitures by the end of 2015. WPX is also targeting a similar sale in 2016.

  • Lankford: Changing Washington 'takes strong families, strong churches and strong communities'

    BY RANDY KREHBIEL, Tulsa World | Published: Fri, Aug 28, 2015

    The federal government is largely a reflection of the nation as a whole, U.S. Sen. James Lankford said Friday while making the rounds of chambers of commerce in Bixby, Broken Arrow and Jenks. "When you look at D.C., that's really what we've become as a nation," Lankford said in Broken Arrow. "Changing it takes strong families, strong churches and strong communities." Lankford said he often leaves audiences with that message.

  • Trial delayed for former sheriff's deputy charged with sexual battery

    BY ARIANNA PICKARD, Tulsa World | Published: Fri, Aug 28, 2015

    The trial for a former Tulsa County Sheriff's deputy accused of sex crimes involving two women he encountered while on duty has been delayed due to a request from his attorney. The trial for Gerald Nuckolls, 27, was scheduled to begin Monday, but District Judge William LaFortune granted the request Friday and rescheduled the trial for Oct. 12, Assistant District Attorney Kenneth Elmore confirmed. In his request filed Monday in Tulsa County District Court, Nuckolls' attorney Terry Funk stated the main reason for the delay is "an unprecedented chain of medical events" involving members of Funk’s family.