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Oklahoma jury convicts former Star Spencer football player in drive-by shooting

Panel recommends 14 years in prison for Darrin Paul Burton Jr., 21, on a charge of second-degree murder.
by Tim Willert Published: March 29, 2013

A jury deliberated about two hours Thursday before finding a former Star Spencer High School football player guilty of second-degree murder in the drive-by shooting death of a teenager.

Jurors recommended 14 years in prison as punishment for Darrin Paul Burton Jr., 21, of Midwest City, who faced a first-degree murder charge in the June 14, 2011, death of Khaelin Irving.

Prosecutors said Irving was riding in a car with three other people, including his brother, when a gold car began following them near NE 23 and Douglas Boulevard.

Burton, a passenger in the gold car, took the stand Thursday and told jurors he fired a single shot in self-defense when someone in the victim's car pointed a chrome revolver in his direction near the intersection of Shadywood Drive and NE 10.

“It looked like a .38 (caliber),” Burton testified. “I couldn't tell who had the gun.”

Prosecutors said a prior dispute between rival gang members fueled a confrontation at a traffic signal that led to Irving's death

Three passengers in the victim's car testified Tuesday that no one in their car had a gun.

“We believed from day one that the people in the other car had a firearm,” defense attorney Malcolm Savage said. “I guess the jury didn't believe that.”

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by Tim Willert
Education Reporter
Tim Willert is a native Californian with Oklahoma ties who covers education. Prior to moving to Oklahoma in June 2011, he was as an editor for in Century City, Calif., and reported on courts for the Los Angeles Daily Journal and...
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