Pharmacy murder suspect Jerome Jay Ersland will ask a state appeals court to block prosecutors from obtaining copies of his military records, his attorney said Wednesday. Attorney Irven Box unsuccessfully challenged a subpoena for Ersland’s military records, arguing they were not relevant to the murder charge against his client stemming from the death of a robber in a May 19 robbery attempt. Oklahoma County District Judge Tammy Bass-LeSure refused to quash the subpoena being sought by prosecutors, but she did agree to allow Box time to appeal her ruling. The judge echoed some of Box’s concerns about the potentially sensitive information that could be contained in Ersland’s military records, but she said the case law provided by the parties indicated prosecutors have a right to request those records. Ersland, 57, has described himself as a disabled Gulf War veteran, but The Oklahoman has learned he left the U.S. Army before the war began. Ersland left active duty with the Army in February 1989, according to military records. That is more than a year before the first Gulf War began. Ersland admitted last week he had misrepresented his military service. He said he was a liaison officer for the Air Force during the war. "I didn’t mean to mislead you,” he said Friday. He’s charged in the killing of a 16-year-old robbery suspect at Reliable Discount Pharmacy, 5900 S Pennsylvania Ave., Prosecutors Wednesday did not indicate why they were seeking Ersland’s service records, but District Attorney David Prater said the request was a normal part of an ongoing investigation. Prater acknowledged the records may not be admissible if the case goes before a jury, but there is nothing wrong with asking for them. "This is a proper use of investigative subpoena,” Prater said. Box insisted there was no reason for prosecutors to seek Ersland’s military records because they are not relevant to the May 19 shooting death of Antwun "Speedy” Parker. "My client’s character is not an issue at this time,” Box said. Ersland, who was not at Wednesday’s hearing, is free on bail and back at work at the pharmacy. Contributing: Nolan Clay, Staff Writer.
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