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Oklahoma Rep. Randy Terrill, former state Sen. Leftwich turn selves in on charges

State Rep. Randy Terrill and former state Sen. Debbe Leftwich will make their first court appearances today in a bribery case.
BY NOLAN CLAY Modified: January 3, 2011 at 5:10 pm •  Published: January 3, 2011

/> Terrill, 41, of Moore, is accused in a felony count of offering Leftwich a bribe — an $80,000-a-year state job — to not run for re-election to the state Senate. Leftwich, 59, of Oklahoma City, is accused in a separate felony count of soliciting and/or accepting the bribe.

Terrill is a Republican. Leftwich is a Democrat. Both have denied wrongdoing.

Terrill was re-elected easily in November , even though he was known to be under investigation. Leftwich did not run for re-election.

The job at the center of the case was to be a new position — a transition coordinator to help the state medical examiner's office move from Oklahoma City to Edmond. Gov. Brad Henry vetoed a reform bill that created the position after District Attorney David Prater began the investigation.

The district attorney charged them Dec. 22. Terrill the next day called the charge politically motivated. Prater said then, "My job has nothing to do with politics."

The first court appearances were very brief. Leftwich's appearance lasted about two minutes. Terrill's lasted about a minute.

At the preliminary hearing conference, prosecutors and defense attorneys will meet and possibly schedule a preliminary hearing.

At a preliminary hearing, prosecutors put on evidence to a judge who must decide if it is sufficient for a trial.