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Witness in Oklahoma illegal gambling case attacked in July

A witness in the illegal gambling case against Teddy Mitchell was attacked at his insurance office in July. Insurance agent Michael Wayne Thomas, 41, suffered a concussion and black eye.
by Nolan Clay Published: October 1, 2012
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EDMOND — A witness in the illegal gambling case against Teddy Mitchell was attacked in July at his insurance office here.

Michael Wayne Thomas, an insurance agent, suffered a concussion from the July 27 assault, his attorney, Ed Blau, said. No arrests have been made.

Thomas, 41, is both a government witness in the federal gambling case and the focus of an Oklahoma City police homicide investigation.

Police detectives this year have focused on Thomas in their efforts to solve who brutally beat Mitchell's wife, Julie, to death in 2010, sources have told The Oklahoman.

FBI agents questioned Thomas about being assaulted, his attorney said.

An Oklahoma City police homicide detective and an Oklahoma County district attorney's investigator also talked to him about the July assault, the attorney said.

“He was at his office,” Blau said. “It was around 2 in the afternoon ... and somebody came to the door and he opened it up. And he said there was ... a very big white guy.”

The attorney said Thomas described the man as resembling a mixed martial arts fighter. The attorney said the man immediately just attacked Thomas.

“I mean, punched him, tried to choke him, tried to hit him in the head with a brick, all those sorts of things. And he ... finally got away,” the attorney said. “At that point, some other people ... saw. And the guy who did it went and jumped in a truck that somebody else was driving. And they drove off.”

The attorney said Thomas recalled the attacker asked if he was Mike Thomas.

Thomas was treated at a hospital.

“I saw him the day after and he was just all messed up — black eye, bruises all over him, cut on his head,” Blau said.

Determining DNA

Investigators have tried to identify the attacker from DNA on hair found in a baseball cap that fell off, the attorney said.

Thomas in May denied having anything to do with the fatal beating of Julie Mitchell even though his company checkbook was found at her Oklahoma City home after she was killed there.

“I — 100 percent — did not,” he said in May. “That's for sure. I was not there at the time.”

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by Nolan Clay
Sr. Reporter
Nolan Clay was born in Oklahoma and has worked as a reporter for The Oklahoman since 1985. He covered the Oklahoma City bombing trials and witnessed bomber Tim McVeigh's execution. His investigative reports have brought down public officials,...
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