DUNCAN — The preliminary hearing for the three teenagers accused of a thrill killing is being postponed to February.
The hearing is being reset from Wednesday to Feb. 4.
Chancey Allen Luna, 16, James Francis Edwards Jr., 16, and Michael Dewayne Jones, 17, are charged with first-degree murder in the Aug. 16 drive-by shooting. All three are from Duncan.
The victim, Christopher Lane, 22, was in Duncan visiting his girlfriend. He was shot in the back while jogging along a street.
The shooting attracted international attention because Lane was from Australia. He was in Oklahoma on a baseball scholarship.
Special Judge Jerry Herberger on Monday agreed to the delay to give defense attorneys more time to review information turned over by prosecutors this month.
Luna's defense attorneys told the judge that prosecutors on Nov. 8 gave them 53 discs “containing a gargantuan and voluminous amount of documentary, video, audio and photographic material.” The attorneys said they have spent hours going over the material “but still need more time.”
Authorities have said in court affidavits that Jones identified Luna as the one who fired the gun.
In an unusual move, Luna's defense attorneys on Monday asked the judge to bar the media and the public from the preliminary hearing.
They claim Luna would be irreparably harmed if potential jurors saw media coverage from the preliminary hearing about Jones' claims.
Luna's attorneys contend Jones implicated Luna “in order to save himself and get out of jail.”
“The defendant's rights need to be protected from the sensational aspects of this case, and the preliminary hearing should be closed to prevent further damage to his rights,” attorneys Jim Berry and Howard K. Berry Jr. wrote in a legal motion.
The defendant's rights need to be protected from the sensational aspects of this case, and the preliminary hearing should be closed to prevent further damage to his rights.”
attorneys Jim Berry and Howard K.