Associated Press

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Tulsa Mayor G.T. Bynum says the city wants a liquid butane transfer company to relocate its facility from an area the city plans to develop for USA BMX's headquarters and arena.

The Tulsa World reports that Bynum plans to meet with the owner of the 11-acre facility. Nick Doctor, the city's chief of development and community policy, says the facility does not need to relocate for the BMX project to go forward. But Bynum says it limits the development potential of the site.

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The Oklahoma Highway Patrol is investigating a pair of separate crashes that left two people dead.

The patrol says in a preliminary report that 48-year-old Mannford resident Robyin R. Anderson was killed late Friday in a Creek County crash. Earlier Friday afternoon, 43-year-old Broken Arrow resident Jonathan B. Taylor died in a crash in Rogers County.

Troopers say Anderson ran a stop sign, sending her car airborne. The vehicle hit a tree while in the air. Anderson was ejected and pronounced dead at the scene.

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Federal prosecutors say three former tellers have been sentenced to prison for embezzling more than $427,000 from the Elk City bank they worked at.

Prosecutors say Breanna Lashea Vinson, Shanquaie Stevenson and Kayla Rene Jackson were each sentenced this week to 18 months in prison for conspiring to embezzle funds from Great Plains National Bank.

U.S. District Judge Vicki Miles-LaGrange also ordered them to pay restitution to the bank and an insurance company. They'll also be on supervised release for two years after their release from prison.

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A federal judge has ruled that the city of Tulsa violated the Civil Rights Act when it retaliated against a black police officer who objected after being ordered to march in a Martin Luther King Day parade.

The Tulsa World reports that U.S. District Judge John Dowdell ruled in favor of Capt. Walter Busby Jr.'s retaliation claim on Thursday. Dowdell ordered the city to remove Busby's unfavorable performance evaluation, credit him with 453 hours of combined vacation and sick leave he took following his reassignment, and pay his attorney fees.

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A federal judge has ruled that the city of Tulsa violated the Civil Rights Act when it retaliated against a black police officer who objected after being ordered to march in a Martin Luther King Day parade.

The Tulsa World reports that U.S. District Judge John Dowdell ruled in favor of Capt. Walter Busby Jr.'s retaliation claim on Thursday. Dowdell ordered the city to remove Busby's unfavorable performance evaluation, credit him with 453 hours of combined vacation and sick leave he took following his reassignment, and pay his attorney fees.

OHP

A federal regulator says an Oklahoma-based circus did not violate the Animal Welfare Act in the roadside transfer of four elephants into another vehicle after the floor of the trailer hauling them began to give way.

U.S. Department of Agriculture spokesman R. Andre Bell said Friday that Carson & Barnes Circus followed procedure. The Animal Welfare Act protects against inhumane treatment and applies to commercially transported and exhibited animals.

A 17-year-old Oklahoma high school student is facing obscenity and child pornography charges after authorities say he posted nude photos of students on a Snapchat page then tried to blackmail administrators when they turned off the school's Wi-Fi access.

Midwest City Police Chief Brandon Clabes says the Carl Albert High School student faces 10 charges, including blackmail and transmitting obscenity and child pornography.

Kratos

A defense contractor plans to open offices in Oklahoma where it will design and build jet-powered drones and employ more than 350 workers over the next several years.

Gov. Mary Fallin announced Friday that California-based Kratos Defense & Security Solutions will open administrative, engineering and production facilities in Oklahoma City.

The company will initially operate out of a facility near Tinker Air Force Base and focus on engineering and production planning. In six months, the company wants to move into a 75,000 square-foot facility.

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Coca-Cola has announced that its bottling plant in eastern Oklahoma will close as part of a consolidation with the company's Oklahoma City facility.

Coca-Cola spokesman Ish Arebalos says the company is designing a new operating model to support its growth strategy. He says the changes at the Oklahoma City and Okmulgee locations could result in approximately 246 job reductions.

Spavinaw State Park

 

The Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation and the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission have contracted with the Oklahoma State University Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit to conduct a five-year study on a northeastern Oklahoma stream.

Rainbow trout will be stocked and examined during the Spavinaw Creek study. University researchers began gathering base data on fish and fauna in the waters through physical surveys and sampling this winter. Trout are expected to be stocked for three years beginning this year.

 

Federal safety records show 10 workers have died over the past decade at well sites linked to drilling contractor Patterson-UTI, the same driller involved in this week's rig explosion in Oklahoma that killed five workers.

An analysis of Occupational Safety and Health Administration data shows the previous accidents happened at drilling sites in Colorado, New Mexico, North Dakota, Pennsylvania and Texas.

The company also was fined nearly $367,000 over the past 10 years for more than 140 safety violations.

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The Oklahoma Highway Patrol says a truck hauling four elephants stalled in eastern Oklahoma, blocking one lane of a busy highway for about two hours.

Patrol Lt. Jarrett Johnson said Wednesday that the commercial vehicle broke down shortly before 2 p.m. on a portion of U.S. 69 near Eufaula, about 120 miles east of Oklahoma City.

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Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback is authorizing a $5,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of those involved in the death of an Oklahoma woman who was found floating in a reservoir.

The governor issued an executive order Tuesday in the case of 33-year-old Cassie Ann Easom, of Miami, Oklahoma.

She was found Dec. 7 in the Elk Creek Reservoir in southwest Kansas and was later declared dead. Investigators say she was shot several times in the head.

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The Oklahoma House of Representatives has distributed nearly $127,000 in pay raises to 14 employees since Jan. 1.

According to the state Office of Management and Enterprise Services, the largest pay increase was $20,000, a 30 percent increase.

A spokesman for House Speaker Republican Charles McCall tells the Tulsa World that the money came from the House's appropriated operating budget.

The House raises come as lawmakers are being asked to consider tax hikes on tobacco and fuel to fund core services and raises for teachers.

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 An initial report into a deadly natural gas rig explosion in Oklahoma indicates there was an uncontrolled release of gas that caught fire and that a worker at the scene tried unsuccessfully to shut down the well.

The incident report into the explosion and fire that killed five workers was released on Tuesday by the Oklahoma Corporation Commission, which regulates oil and gas operations in the state.

Zac Carp-Facebook

 

 An initial report into a deadly natural gas rig explosion in Oklahoma indicates there was an uncontrolled release of gas that caught fire and that a worker at the scene tried unsuccessfully to shut down the well.

The incident report into the explosion and fire that killed five workers was released on Tuesday by the Oklahoma Corporation Commission, which regulates oil and gas operations in the state.

file photo

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — The Oklahoma Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that oil and natural gas companies can be sued when a worker is killed or injured on the job.

The state's highest court struck down a state workers' compensation law that exempted oil and gas well operators and owners from lawsuits, including one filed by a worker who was fatally burned in 2014 at an Oklahoma County oil well site operated by Stephens Production Co.

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Gas rig workers missing after fiery explosion in Oklahoma are found dead at the blast site.

Pittsburg County Sheriff Chris Morris said it's been a difficult 24 hours for everyone involved since the Monday morning blast. His deputies and others have had the difficult task of notifying families of those lost.

"I think you can imagine, they're not doing well," Morris said during a press conference. "No law enforcement officer likes to do that. The family not knowing and feeling empty, it's a tough situation."

Wikipedia

One person was killed and others were wounded as someone opened fire at a rural Kentucky high school Tuesday morning. Police said a suspect was apprehended and the school was locked down.

Nearly 100 children ran out of Marshall County High School seeking safety, said Mitchell Garland, who rushed outside of his business when he heard about the shooting.

"They was running and crying and screaming," he said. "They was just kids running down the highway. They were trying to get out of there."

NPR

 

The Sex Crimes Unit at the Tulsa Police Department says the department likely won't meet Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin's extended deadline to compile an audit of untested rap kits.

Sgt. Jillian Phippen says the audit is an unfunded mandate by the state and that the department doesn't have the manpower to complete it in the allotted time frame.

Phippen says there are 5,000 to 6,000 sexual assault cases with rape kits dating back to the 1980s. She says some kits aren't in the department's database and must be physically reviewed and manually entered.

Tulsa County Booking Photo

 

An Oklahoma man facing first-degree murder and hate crime charges in the fatal shooting of his Lebanese neighbor is set for trial this week.

Stanley Vernon Majors is accused in the killing of 37-year-old Khalid Jabara in August 2016. Prosecutors say Majors, who is now 63, killed Jabara after bombarding him with racial insults in a feud with Jabara's family that lasted several years.

Majors previously pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder and malicious intimidation and harassment, which is Oklahoma's hate-crime law.

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 The search is resuming for five people who are unaccounted for after a fiery explosion at an Oklahoma gas drilling rig.

The blast happened Monday morning at a drilling site near Quinton, about 100 miles (161 kilometers) southeast of Tulsa. The explosion sent plumes of black smoke into the air and left a derrick crumpled on the ground. For much of the day Monday, emergency officials were unable to get near the rig because the fire was still burning.

USGS Map

 

An earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 7.9 struck off Alaska's Kodiak Island early Tuesday, prompting a tsunami warning for a large swath of coastal Alaska and Canada's British Columbia while the remainder of the U.S. West Coast was under a watch.

The strong earthquake hit at 12:32 a.m. and was recorded about 175 miles southeast of Kodiak Island. Warnings from the National Weather Service sent to cellphones in Alaska warned: "Emergency Alert. Tsunami danger on the coast. Go to high ground or move inland."

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An Oklahoma lawmaker who found a tracking device attached to his pickup truck is now suing a private investigation company and an investigator over the device.

The Oklahoman reports Republican Rep. Mark McBride is suing Eastridge Investigations and Asset Protection and Eastridge investigator H.L. Christensen for undisclosed damages.

McBride alleges trespassing, invasion of privacy, intentional infliction of emotional distress and negligence.

An attorney for both Eastridge and Christensen said he can't comment because the matter is pending.

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Forecasters say warm, dry and breezy conditions have created a high risk for wildfires in parts of Oklahoma.

The National Weather Service says unseasonable weather will cause an extreme wildfire risk through Monday.

Forecasters say winds gusting up to 45 mph, temperatures in the 60s and 70s and humidity as low as 18 percent will combine with dry vegetation to create ideal conditions for wildfires in western and southwestern Oklahoma.

TU Tops Memphis

Jan 21, 2018

DaQuan Jeffries finished with career highs of 24 points and 11 rebounds to notch his first double-double and propel Tulsa to a 64-51 victory over Memphis. Jeffries connected on 8 of 15 shots, including 3 of 4 from long range, for the Golden Hurricane

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Arkansas-based Walmart's closing of its Express stores in small towns across the Midwest and South has affected basic government services from police protection to parks.

Luther, Oklahoma had to postpone the purchase two new police cars. In Nettleton, Mississippi, plans to improve sewer and water services and city parks were shelved.

Losses were somewhat offset when Dollar General purchased and re-opened the stores, but the Dollar General stores are generating less revenue without the pharmacies Walmart offered that help attract customers.

Oklahoma State Regents

Gov. Mary Fallin has reappointed an Oklahoma rancher to the Oklahoma Agricultural and Mechanical Colleges Board of Regents.

Fallin says Jarold Callahan has been appointed to an eight-year term on the OSU/A&M board, pending state Senate confirmation.

Callahan was first appointed to the board in February 2016 to replace Andy Lester, who resigned after being appointed to the Oklahoma Regents for Higher Education.

OKC Memorial and Museum

The Oklahoma City National Memorial and Museum remains open despite a federal government shutdown.

Executive Director Kari Watkins said Saturday that while the museum and memorial to honor victims of the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing is affiliated with the federal National Park Service, it is privately owned and operated by the Oklahoma City National Memorial Foundation.

Watkins said that because of the shutdown, National Park rangers will not be on site and are being replaced by museum and memorial staff members.

U.S. Justice Department

U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Oklahoma Mark Yancey is stepping down to take another federal post in South Carolina.

The U.S. attorney's office in Oklahoma City announced Friday that Yancey is resigning the post he's held since January 2016. Yancey will begin his new Department of Justice job next week at the National Advocacy Center in Columbia, South Carolina.

A news release says Yancey will coordinate training for federal prosecutors in national security and other criminal cases.

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