Rushville Republican

Archive

August 21, 2013

DA: Evidence, not race, determined charges in jogger's slaying

DUNCAN, Okla. — District Attorney Jason Hicks said Wednesday the racial ethnicity of three teenagers arrested for the random shooting death of college baseball player Christopher Lane of Melbourne, Australia, had nothing to do with the criminal charges brought against them.

Hicks responded to a reporter's question about the comment by the sister of James Edwards, 15,  a black defendant, that prosecutors appeared to give preferential treatment to Michael Dewayne Jones, 17, a white defendant.

Rachel Padilla, who is black, said law enforcement officials were prejudiced against her brother and the third defendant, Chancey Allen Luna, because they are youths of color and were charged with first-degree murder while Jones was charged with the lesser crime of being an accessory to murder after the fact and use of a motor vehicle in the discharge of a weapon.

"I don't feel it is fair," said Padilla.

Prosecutors said all three youths were responsible for the random drive-by shooting of Lane last week while he was jogging along a road on the north side of town. They said the teens were bored and decided to kill sombody for fun.

At Tuesday's initial court hearing on the case they said Luna, riding in the back seat of Jones' car, fired the single shot from a .22-caliber pistol that killed Lane. Edwards rode in the front passenger's seat and Jones drove the ambush car, they said.

"All I am going to say on that question (of race) is we have cleared the cases the way the evidence has been laid out in front of us," said Hicks.

Police Chief Danny Ford told reporters the day after the trio's arrest that Jones was the only one who cooperated with investigators, raising speculation that prosecutors may have made a deal with him to testify against the other youths.

Text Only
Featured Ads
AP Video
Couple Channel Grief Into Soldiers' Retreat WWI Aviation Still Alive at Aerodrome in NY Raw: Rescuers at Taiwan Explosion Scene Raw: Woman Who Faced Death Over Faith in N.H. Clinton Before 9-11: Could Have Killed Bin Laden Netanyahu Vows to Destroy Hamas Tunnels Obama Slams Republicans Over Lawsuit House Leaders Trade Blame for Inaction Malaysian PM: Stop Fighting in Ukraine Cantor Warns of Instability, Terror in Farewell Ravens' Ray Rice: 'I Made a Huge Mistake' Florida Panther Rebound Upsets Ranchers Small Plane Crash in San Diego Parking Lot Busy Franco's Not Afraid of Overexposure Fighting Blocks Access to Ukraine Crash Site Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida Workers Dig for Survivors After India Landslide Texas Scientists Study Ebola Virus Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow Southern Accent Reduction Class Cancelled in TN
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.