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Oklahoma County District Judge Tammy Bass-LeSure reports receiving death threats

BY NOLAN CLAY Published: May 30, 2009
The judge overseeing the controversial murder case against a pharmacist said Friday she received two telephone death threats.

Oklahoma County District Judge Tammy Bass-LeSure said she got the calls at home Thursday after a bail hearing for Jerome Jay Ersland of Chickasha.

The judge Thursday allowed Ersland to be freed on $100,000 bail but ordered him to have no access to guns. She said one caller was upset Ersland was released. She said the other caller was upset with the weapons restrictions and used a racial slur.

"I haven’t been called that in a long time,” said the judge, who is black.

Ersland, 57, is accused of going too far while defending himself during a robbery May 19 at Reliable Discount Pharmacy in south Oklahoma City. Prosecutors allege he shot an unconscious, unarmed robber, Antwun Parker, five more times after he had incapacitated Parker with a shot to the head.

A drug store video shows Parker was first shot as he pulls on a ski mask. The pharmacist then chased a second armed suspect who fled out the pharmacy door. Ersland then returned, got a second gun and shot Parker again.

The judge revealed the death threats during a conversation in court with Ersland’s defense attorney, Irven Box, who was before her on another case. has disabled the comments for this article.