Associated Press

 

The Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals has upheld the life sentences of a 48-year-old man convicted in the stabbing deaths of two women in Tulsa.

Hilliard Andrew "Hilly" Fulgham was convicted by a Tulsa County jury on two counts of first-degree murder in the deaths of 45-year-old Linda Wright and 60-year-old Dorothy Lindley. The victims' bodies were discovered in their apartment on Jan. 6, 2006.

 

 The U.S. Geological Survey says an earthquake has rattled part of central Oklahoma.

Geologists say the 3.2 magnitude earthquake was recorded at 8:21 a.m. Thursday about 4 miles east-northeast of Edmond. It was recorded at a depth of less than 4 miles.

No damage or injuries were immediately reported. Geologists say damage is unlikely in earthquakes below magnitude 4.0.

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The Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation says two men were fatally shot by law enforcement officers in separate incidents Wednesday.

Investigators say Ponca City officers confronted a man who was reportedly assaulting a delivery man with what appeared to be a tire iron early Wednesday. The OSBI says officers shot the man after he reportedly threatened them with the weapon.

 

Dry conditions plus blown-down trees from a tornado several years ago in central Oklahoma are fueling a wildfire that continues to burn Wednesday morning. No structures have been lost and no one has been hurt.

Oklahoma Forestry Services spokeswoman Michelle Finch-Walker says the fire was about 60 percent contained as of Wednesday morning. It's burning near Shawnee, or about 30 miles southeast of Oklahoma City.

The Securities and Exchange Commission says Oklahoma City-based SandRidge Energy, Inc., has settled charges it retaliated against a whistleblower and used illegal separation agreements.

The SEC said Tuesday SandRidge has agreed to pay a penalty of $1.4 million. David A Kimmel, SandRidge director of communications, says in an email SandRidge cooperated fully with the SEC.

Kimmel also says that under the company's bankruptcy reorganization plan, the fine will be satisfied with a $100,000 payment.

State of Oklahoma-File Photo

 

 Plunging oil prices have devastated the state budget in Oklahoma in the last several years, leading to employee layoffs and sharp cuts in services. But the tough times didn't touch Attorney General Scott Pruitt, President-elect Trump nominee to head the Environmental Protection Agency.

While preaching small-government conservatism, Pruitt, 48, has managed to increase his office expenses by 40 percent and add nearly 60 employees, turning the agency into a dynamo of legal attacks on the Obama administration.

 

Oklahoma's Secretary of Finance says the hole in next year's budget is expected to be about $868 million, or more than 12 percent of state spending, significantly more than Gov. Mary Fallin estimated last week.

Finance Secretary Preston Doerflinger released budget figures on Tuesday that also project state revenue collections won't be enough to trigger a further cut in the state's individual income tax rate from 5 percent to 4.85 percent.

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  The Oklahoma Corporation Commission has developed new guidelines for dealing with earthquakes linked to oil and natural gas production under development in parts of the state.

The South Central Oklahoma Oil Province and the Sooner Trend Anadarko Basin Canadian and Kingfisher counties fields are expected to account for most new oil and gas activity in Oklahoma. The area stretches from west-central Oklahoma to the southern part of the state.

 

Authorities say one person was found dead after a fire at a mobile home in Midwest City.

A fire department spokesman says two men were inside the mobile home when the fire broke out early Tuesday. Fire Maj. David Richardson says one man was dead at the scene and the other suffered burns to his hands.

It took crews about 45 minutes to extinguish the blaze, and the cause of the fire remains under investigation.

 

Collins Liquor

 

The Retail Liquor Association of Oklahoma has filed a lawsuit that challenges a ballot measure approved by voters that will legalize wine sales in grocery stores.

Online Oklahoma County court records indicate the group filed the lawsuit on Monday against the Oklahoma Alcoholic Beverage Laws Enforcement Commission. The lawsuit asks for a temporary restraining order to block the commission from implementing changes to state alcohol laws mandated by the passage of State Question 792.

Duke University

 

Several puppy scams in Oklahoma have prompted a consumer alert from the Better Business Bureau of Central Oklahoma.

The Oklahoman reports the local branch of the nonprofit organization has received numerous calls, complaints and reports regarding online pet scams being run by several companies that claim to operate out of Oklahoma. Officials say some people have nearly paid $1,000 for puppies they never received.

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 Oklahoma's seven Republican electors have formally selected Donald Trump as the country's next president.

The electors gathered Monday in the governor's Blue Room and each cast their vote for Trump and Vice President-elect Mike Pence.

One of the electors, state Rep. Bobby Cleveland, wore a red "Make America Great Again" hat as he cast his vote for Trump.

KWGS News File Photo

   

Oklahoma transportation officials say crews have cleared snow and sleet from most parts of the state, but cautioned that some roadways remain hazardous.

The Oklahoma Department of Transportation said Sunday that crews are treating isolated slick spots in the eastern part of the state. The agency cautioned drivers to use extra caution traveling on highways in northeastern Oklahoma because they still could be slick.

Ken Miller

 

 Oklahoma budget writers are bracing for yet another gaping hole to work around for the upcoming fiscal year.

It's the third consecutive year with a significant shortfall.

Officials estimate a $600 million deficit for the budget that will pay for public safety, health care and infrastructure starting July 1.

The 2017 fiscal year deficit, as well as last year's $1.3 billion shortfall and $611 million one the year before, are all due to lower revenue from oil and natural gas production and the impact of various tax cuts and deductions.

Tulsa County Booking Photo

 

 An imprisoned ex-Tulsa police officer at the center of one of the worst corruption scandals in the history of the department is petitioning a federal judge for his early release.

Former Cpl. Harold Wells was one of four law enforcement officers sent to prison after being indicted by federal prosecutors on charges of fabricating drug buys, coaching informants and stealing drugs and cash.

The 65-year-old Wells was sentenced in 2011 to 10 years in prison.

KWGS News File Photo

 

 Tulsa police are investigating after an officer fatally shot a man near a house where a woman and three dogs were later found dead.

Police spokesman Leland Ashley says officers responded Sunday afternoon to the property on the city's west side on a shots fired call. As they arrived in the street, officers saw a man on the porch pointing a shotgun at an officer.

Ashley says the man went inside, then came back out and began walking toward officers, aiming the shotgun at them.

One officer then fatally shot the unidentified man.

A video showing Oklahoma running back Joe Mixon punching a female student was released to The Associated Press on Friday.

The Oklahoma Supreme Court ordered the release last week of a video that the Oklahoma Association of Broadcasters sued to obtain.

The Associated Press acquired videos showing two angles of the incident. One, which shows the altercation, is the video the OAB sued for. The other shows another angle of the incident.

 The sponsor of an Oklahoma law requiring signs in public restrooms directing pregnant women where to receive services to avoid abortions now wants to limit the signs only to abortion providers.

Republican Sen. A.J. Griffin filed a bill Friday that dramatically narrows the requirement. Her amendment to the law would require the information be available through social media, but only abortion providers would have to post restroom signs.

 Firefighters say a woman and a child have died in a house fire in northwest Oklahoma City.

Battalion Chief Benny Fulkerson says the woman was dead at the scene of the fire that was reported about 5 a.m. Saturday and the child died later at a hospital.

No names have been released. Fulkerson says the two were the only people inside the home.

Fulkerson says both victims were found in a downstairs bedroom of the 1½ story home and were removed through a rear window.

The cause of the blaze has not been determined.

KWGS File photo

 The Oklahoma Department of Corrections says it's now supervising a record number of convicts.

The department said Friday it is overseeing 61,012 people, which includes 26,619 in state and private prisons or halfway houses and 32,564 who are supervised by GPS monitors, community supervision or by probation and parole officers. Another 1,829 are in county jails awaiting space in prison.

The department says the total number is the highest in its 49-year history.

Department director Joe Allbaugh said state prisons need more than $2 billion in infrastructure repairs.

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Oklahoma ranks ahead of just four states in overall health in a report by the United Health Foundation's America's Health Rankings.

Oklahoma ranks No. 46 in the report released Thursday, one spot worse than in 2015. The state ranks better than only Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana and Mississippi.

The report says Oklahoma has the fifth-worst rate in the U.S. of infant mortality; seventh-worst rate of cancer deaths; eighth-worst rate of obesity; ninth-worst rate of diabetes; and is third worst in heart disease related deaths.

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 A woman recalled maneuvering the vehicle her husband was driving after he was shot during testimony at a preliminary hearing for a Texas man accused of killing him and another person while randomly firing his gun along an Oklahoma interstate.

Jeremy Doss Hardy is charged with first-degree murder in the fatal shootings of 45-year-old Jeffery Kent Powell of Arapaho and 63-year-old Billie Jean West of Lone Wolf.

The preliminary hearing was Thursday. A judge will determine if there's sufficient evidence for a trial to be held.

State of Oklahoma

 Gov. Mary Fallin has scheduled a special election to fill a vacant seat in the Oklahoma House of Representatives.

Fallin on Friday scheduled a special primary election for March 7 and a special general election for May 9 to fill the District 28 seat left open by the resignation of Republican Rep. Tom Newell of Seminole.

The filing period will be Jan. 9, 10 and 11.

If a primary isn't necessary, the general election will be March 7.

A 12-year-old boy has been killed in an all-terrain vehicle crash in Kay County.

The Oklahoma Highway Patrol says the boy died Wednesday the ATV he was riding crashed in a pasture near Newkirk.

The boy's name was not released.

A police report says the boy was northbound in the pasture when ATV struck a wooden post lying on the ground/

The ATV then rolled and the boy was thrown from the vehicle.

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 The AAA is predicting that more than 900,000 Oklahomans will travel over the year-end holiday period, a slight increase from the year before.

Nationwide, a record 103 million Americans are expected to travel during the period that runs from Dec. 23 until Jan. 2. AAA Oklahoma spokesman Chuck Mai says low gas prices and an increase in consumer spending this year are likely linked to the increase in holiday travelers.

Oklahoma Department of Corrections

 

 The Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals has upheld the life prison sentence of a 26-year-old man convicted of first-degree murder in the death of a man who disappeared in 2011.

The court handed down the ruling Thursday in the case of Miguel Angel Chavira, who was found guilty by a Tulsa County jury in the shooting death of 24-year-old Joshua Counts.

Authorities say the victim's sister reported that her brother was missing in October 2011. Volunteers discovered his remains in December 2011 along a highway near Inola, east of Tulsa.

KWGS File Photo

Authorities say three people died in separate wrecks and more than 100 traffic crashes were reported after freezing drizzle slickened roads in the Oklahoma City area Thursday night.

The Oklahoma Highway Patrol reported the fatal crashes on three interstates in the metro area. The Oklahoma City Fire Department says its crews responded to multiple wrecks, including an eight-vehicle pileup that shut down traffic.

Oklahoma City

 

 The president and top officers of the U.S. Conference of Mayors have discussed their priorities and municipal issues with President-elect Donald Trump.

Oklahoma City Mayor Mick Cornett, president of the organization, and other mayors met with Trump in New York City Thursday. Topics included infrastructure investment, public safety, unfunded federal mandates and immigration.

Cornett says members of the delegation had "a very positive, wide-ranging discussion" with Trump and appreciate his desire to work with the nation's mayors to strengthen metro economies.

Oklahoma County Sheriff

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — The case of a Tulsa dentist charged in the death of the 19-month-old son of a woman he was in a relationship with has been ordered to go to trial.

Oklahoma County Special Judge Larry Shaw found enough evidence for 35-year-old Bert Franklin's case to proceed. Franklin is charged with first-degree murder in the death of Lincoln Von Henry Lewis and has pleaded not guilty.

Prosecutors say Franklin caused fatal head injuries to Lincoln on July 16 at the Oklahoma City home of the child's mother. Lincoln died two days later.

Mary Fallin

 

  

Gov. Mary Fallin says early projections are that Oklahoma will have a hole in next year's state budget of as much as $600 million, or nearly 10 percent of state spending on the current year's budget.

Fallin said Wednesday she expects a projected shortfall of between $500 million to $600 million when the State Board of Equalization meets next week to certify available revenues. The governor says that figure includes about $245 million in one-time sources of money that were spent on this year's budget.

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