Calera man admits possessing gun used to kill officer

Mike Seals - November 9, 2020 10:37 pm

TULSA, Okla. (AP) — A Calera, Oklahoma, man has pleaded guilty to illegally possessing a firearm that authorities say was used to kill a Tulsa police officer in June, federal prosecutors announced Monday.

U.S. Attorney Trent Shores said Jakob Gerald Garland, 28, pleaded guilty to one count of being a prohibited person in possession of a firearm. Garland admitted to trading the semiautomatic pistol to David Anthony Ware, a convicted felon, in exchange for heroin, Shores said. Garland also acknowledged he himself was a convicted felon, Shores said. Garland is scheduled to be sentenced in February.

Ware, 33, has been charged in the June 29 shooting that killed Tulsa Police Sgt. Craig Johnson and wounded Officer Aurash Zarkeshan. A trial date has been set for June.

Ware had a not guilty plea entered on his behalf in July. Co-defendant Matthew Hall also has pleaded not guilty. Hall waived his right to a preliminary hearing on charges of accessory to murder and accessory to shooting with intent to kill.

Both defendants are scheduled to appear in court on Tuesday.

Defense attorney Kevin Adams renewed his call for the release of videos of the shooting, telling Seibert their contents don’t match public comments made by officials.

Seibert kept a July order from another judge in place that blocks the videos’ release. But she partly agreed with Adams’ claims that there are some inconsistencies, though she did not specify which parts.

Adams said that Police Chief Wendell Franklin made a false statement to the media about Ware “slowly” walking away from Johnson.

In response to Adams, District Attorney Steve Kunzweiler said, “I think that Chief Franklin certainly kind of articulated that there were some things that may have been said that were later corrected by I think (Homicide Lt. Brandon) Watkins in his report to what — how things unfolded on the video.”

Kunzweiler told reporters that he believes the case is “eligible” for the death penalty and noted there is an internal case review “in the works.”


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