OCDW 05.08.17



James L. Hankins, Publisher


(with special thanks to Mark Hoover, OIDS, for contributing regularly)


“I have lived my life, and I have fought my battles, not against the weak and the poor—anybody can do that—but against power, against injustice, against oppression, and I have asked no odds from them, and I never shall.”—-Clarence S. Darrow, Attorney for the Damned 491, 497 (Arthur Weinberg ed. 1957).


ALFALFA COUNTY: The first county was Adair, to which I have never been, but Alfalfa County is one to which I have appeared many times (so, I am 1 out of 2 so far). The town of Cherokee is the country seat in this sparsely populated county, which was formed from Woods County and is named after William H. “Alfalfa Bill” Murray, the President of the Oklahoma Constitutional Convention and the ninth Governor of the State of Oklahoma.




No new cases.




United States v. Phillip Lamont Morgan, No. 16-5015 (10th Cir., May 2, 2017) (Published) (Briscoe, Matheson & Phillips) (N.D. Okla., Hon. James H. Payne): Search and Seizure (Traffic Stops; Bicycle): The Supreme Court has held that a police officer may order the driver and passenger out of a car during a traffic stop. Can the officer order a person to stop off a bicycle? Yes (thus, the motion to suppress is denied).




“Only Supreme Court justices and schoolchildren are expected to and do take the entire summer off.” –Chief Justice John Roberts (statement made while he served as a lawyer in the Reagan Administration).

No new cases.




United States v. Brian T. Mulkern, No. 16-1146 (1st Cir., April 14, 2017): Federal Sentencing Guidelines (ACCA): Sentence under the ACCA vacated because neither a robbery conviction nor a trafficking conviction qualified as ACCA predicate offenses. NOTE: This opinion contains a good primer on this topic.

United States v. Joseph Vincent Jenkins, No. 14-4295-cr (2nd Cir., April 17, 2017): Child Porn; Federal Sentencing Guidelines (Reasonableness): Sentence of 225 months, followed by 25 years of supervised release for possession of child porn is substantively unreasonable. NOTE: 2-1 split opinion.




The OCDLA will host its Annual Meeting and Awards Banquet on Thursday, June 29, 2017, (the first day of the Patrick Williams Criminal Defense Institute) at the Sheraton Reed Center in Midwest City.

The deadline for nominations is Friday, June 2, 2017, at 5:00 p.m. The awards and the criteria for each (the Clarence Darrow Award, the Thurgood Marshall Appellate Advocacy Award, and the Lord Thomas Erskine Award) can be found on the OCDLAW web site HERE.

These awards are important and very difficult to earn, so I would urge each of you to take some time out in the coming weeks and give some thought about the lawyers you believe are doing a good job in the areas of trial work, appellate work, and overall contribution to the preservation of constitutional rights of the accused.




ERIC EDWARDS, Enid, represented a client in Major County charged possession of child porn and computer crimes. Eric attacked the search warrant for the home, the local judge recused, and Judge Bozarth (Associate Judge from Dewey County) granted the motion to suppress and quashed the Information. Eric actually attacked the veracity of the statements made in the affidavit, and questioned the affiant extensively, but Judge Bozarth held that the information was insufficient. Nice job, Eric!

SHENA BURGESS, Tulsa, got a nice win in Tulsa County recently defending a client charged with second-degree manslaughter in the death of an elderly woman in a nursing home bus. Judge James Caputo granted Shena’s motion to quash and dismissed the case. Terrific work, Shena!




STINGRAY: The use by police of a Stingray device which mimics cell tower sites to track down cell phone users is being attacked by defense counsel around the country.

CHARGES DROPPED: Charges in a felony shooting case out of Muskogee were dropped when a witness refused to testify.

RIP: Associate District Judge Charles Migliorino (Johnston County) passed away last week.

POLICE INCIDENT: Four Oklahoma City police officers are on leave after a use of force incident was captured on video.

RESIGNED: The City Attorney for the City of Tahlequah, Angela Jones, has resigned.

ARRESTED: An Okmulgee County Chief Deputy Sheriff has been arrested for robbery and assault.

BAR COMPLAINT: The Tulsa Chapter of the FOP has filed a bar complaint against District Attorney Steve Kunzweiler for charging Officer Betty Shelby with Manslaughter in the shooting death of an unarmed black man.

DISBANDED: The Marshals for the City of Oklahoma City municipal court have been disbanded.



ATTORNEY ARRESTED: An attorney in Nichols Hills has been arrested…for egging cars.

DISASTER AVERTED: A middle-school child in Bartlesville found a gun on the ground on the way to the bus stop for school and fired it…which turned out to be a real gun; fortunately no one was injured.

TEACHER ARRESTED: A teacher in Tulsa left her laptop open for others to read…which contained her social media conversations about bringing drugs into the school for which she has been arrested (check out the booking photo).

ANTIQUATED LAWS REPEALED: Oklahoma has finally gotten around to repealing antiquated laws regarding seduction and slander.

CAR SCHEME: A woman in Tulsa sold her car…then promptly stole it back.

GAMBLING: Oklahoma is number one in casinos per capita in the nation, but seventh in gambling addiction.

CAMERAS: The Norman P.D. has implemented the use of body cams and in-car video units.

NEW JOB: The attorney in charge of multi-county grand juries, Megan Tilly, has been appointed as a Commissioner for Workers’ Compensation.

IT STARTS: Drew Edmondson has announced plans to run for Governor.




THURSDAY, JUNE 29th and FRIDAY, JUNE 30th, 2017: 2017 PATRICK A. WILLIAMS CRIMINAL DEFENSE INSTITUTE will take place in Oklahoma City at the Reed Center located at the Sheraton Hotel. The link goes to registration info and more info about the venue.



SUBSCRIPTIONS AND SUBMISSIONS: To subscribe to the Oklahoma Criminal Defense Weekly just send an e-mail to James L. Hankins at jameshankins@ocdw.com and include the e- mail address to which you want the issues to be delivered. I am sending out the issues for free now to whoever wants to receive them. Submissions of articles, war stories, letters, victory stories, comments or questions can be sent to Mr. Hankins via e-mail or you can contact him by phone at 405.753.4150, by fax at 405.445.4956, or by regular mail at James L. Hankins, TIMBERBROOKE BUSINESS CENTER, 929 N.W. 164th St., Edmond, OK 73013.


ABOUT THE OCDW: The Oklahoma Criminal Defense Weekly is compiled, maintained, edited and distributed weekly by attorney James L. Hankins. Archived issues can be obtained by contacting Mr. Hankins directly, although some of them are on the web site at www.ocdw.com. OCDW accepts no money from sponsors. Mr. Hankins is solely responsible for its content. The OCDW web site is maintained by Spark Line.

COPYRIGHT STATEMENT & DISCLAIMER: ©2005-2017 by James L. Hankins. All rights reserved. OCDW hereby grants free use of these materials for any non-commercial purpose provided that proper credit to the OCDW is given. In the event that copyrighted works are included in an edition of the OCDW such works may not be reproduced without the consent of the copyright holder because under federal law the OCDW has no authority to allow the reproduction of the intellectual property of others. For purposes that go beyond “fair use” of the copyrighted material under federal law, the permission of the copyright holder must be obtained. If you are a copyright holder and object to any portion of an issue of the OCDW, please contact the publisher, James L. Hankins, at the contact information above (located under the SUBSCRIPTIONS AND SUBMISSIONS section). Finally, the materials presented in this newsletter are for informational purposes only, and are not, nor intended to be, legal advice or to create an attorney-client relationship. You should consult an experienced attorney licensed in your jurisdiction for legal advice applicable to the specific facts of your case. Cases are summarized in each weekly issue as they are issued and filed by the respective court, and are thus subject to being withdrawn, corrected, vacated, and/or modified or reversed without notice. Always conduct your own research!


If you have received this e-mail in error, or no longer wish to receive the weekly newsletter, simply reply to the message, or send a new message, to jameshankins@ocdw.com and type in “UNSUBSCRIBE” in the subject line, along with your name and e-mail address and you will be taken off the mailing list.