Oklahoma prosecutors drop Broken Arrow Public Schools perjury charge

BY MICHAEL MCNUTT mmcnutt@opubco.com Published: January 4, 2013
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Counts of bribery and conspiracy against a school district also were dismissed last month against Windstream, which also entered into a one-year deferred prosecution agreement.

Windstream must make a $100,000 nontax-deductible payment to the Broken Arrow Public Schools Foundation.

The indictments against Sisney and Windstream were filed in Tulsa County District Court.

Indictments

Grand jurors alleged in the bribery indictments that Windstream illegally provided Sisney two basketball tickets to the 2007 Final Four in Atlanta, as well as other gratuities, as a show of appreciation. Corporation officials had identified the Broken Arrow School District as one of its top customers, according to the indictments.

Grand jurors allege in the perjury indictment that Bryson tried to mislead them. They allege Bryson claimed he gave Sisney his own two Final Four tickets when he couldn't go. Bryson then worked for Windstream.

“I had two tickets that were given to me by the corporation,” Bryson testified, according to his indictment. “I couldn't go. I'm not, to be very frank, a huge basketball fan. If it was a football game, I probably would have found a way to go. ... I asked him if he was interested in going, and he said yes.”

The grand jury alleged that Windstream and Sisney conspired to “impair, obstruct or defeat the lawful function and duties of the school board.” Sisney and Windstream denied wrongdoing, but entered into the deferred prosecution agreements “as a compromise of disputed claims,” according to court documents.

A Broken Arrow School District official said earlier that Windstream is no longer the district's telecommunications service provider.