The bribery trial for two former legislators has been scheduled for October but their defense attorneys want a judge to dismiss the case before then.
Former state Rep. Randy Terrill, 43, of Moore, is charged with offering a bribe to a candidate to withdraw. Former state Sen. Debbe Leftwich, 61, of Oklahoma City, is charged with soliciting and/or accepting a bribe to withdraw.
“I think it's pretty clear that they don't have a case,” Terrill's attorney, Chris Eulberg, said of prosecutors.
Terrill's attorney already has filed two legal motions asking the trial judge for a dismissal. He argues, for instance, that prosecutors have no evidence whatsoever that Terrill ever offered or gave anything to Leftwich for any reason.
Eulberg calls the prosecution paperwork explaining the charge “merely a rambling collection of vague assertions that do not rise to the level of a public offense.”
Leftwich's attorney, Robert McCampbell, plans to file his dismissal requests next week.
October date is set
Oklahoma County District Judge Cindy Truong met with a prosecutor and the defense attorneys Wednesday to schedule the trial.
The jury trial was set to begin Oct. 21.
Truong was assigned to the case Wednesday after the original trial judge, Glenn Jones, took himself off it.
Jones did so because his wife and Leftwich's attorney are law partners at the same large law firm in Oklahoma City. “I am disqualified from the case,” Jones said.
Prosecutors allege Terrill, a Republican, offered Leftwich, a Democrat, an $80,000-a-year state job to not run for re-election in 2010.
Prosecutors contend Terrill was trying to help a Republican friend who was planning to run for her Senate seat.
Leftwich did not seek re-election, and did not get the state job. After the district attorney announced an investigation was under way, then-Gov. Brad Henry vetoed a reform bill creating the job at the medical examiner's office.
Terrill is no longer in the Legislature. Last year, he lost his election bid to become a Cleveland County commissioner.
Both deny wrongdoing. The maximum punishment for a conviction in the felony case is two years in prison and a $5,000 fine.
Both likely to seek separate trials
The two now are scheduled to be tried together before the same jury. Terrill is asking for a separate trial. Leftwich is expected to make the same request.
The case has been delayed because prosecutors sought unsuccessfully to add a conspiracy count. A preliminary hearing judge ruled in 2011 that there was insufficient evidence for a conspiracy count. An appeals court last month upheld the ruling.