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Updated: 10 min 51 sec ago

Authorities warn against posting school threats

Thu, 10/10/2019 - 8:20pm

By Josh Dulaney
Staff writer jdulaney@oklahoman.com

After a rash of threats against school campuses, area educators gathered with local authorities Thursday to warn parents and students against calling in or posting real or hoax threats that endanger school safety.

“We will punish to the full extent of the law any of these social media hoaxes,” said Bret Towne, superintendent of Edmond Public Schools.

During the last few weeks, several area school districts have received real or bogus threats against their campuses.

Arrests were made in some districts, including McAlester, Yukon, Edmond and most recently in Lawton.

Authorities said each threat against schools is investigated fully to determine its credibility.

Read more on NewsOK.com

Adopt a pet: Oklahoma City-area pet adoption options

Wed, 10/09/2019 - 12:00am

Bethany Animal Control Shelter: 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Read more on NewsOK.com

Mission Norman seeks volunteers for upcoming pre-holiday, holiday events

Wed, 10/09/2019 - 12:00am

Staff reports

NORMAN — Mission Norman is seeking about 30 volunteers for events from October through December.

During October, volunteers are needed to enroll families for Thanksgiving meals and children’s Christmas toys.

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OU in dispute with partners in housing development

Tue, 10/08/2019 - 8:20pm

By Randy Krehbiel
Tulsa World

A dispute between the University of Oklahoma and its partners in a campus housing development has drawn in two hard-hitting law firms from opposite ends of the country and could have long-term implications for OU, the state of Oklahoma and public financing nationally.

It’s a complicated story, one in which lawyers from Los Angeles and New York call each other liars long distance and threaten multimillion-dollar lawsuits because a new residential complex called Cross Village sits mostly empty on the south side of the OU campus.

At stake are more than $250 million in bonds issued through a state trust, the Oklahoma Development Financing Authority, or ODFA. Neither the state nor the university are legally responsible for the debt, but OU’s partners argue the university’s — and the state’s — credit and reputations could be significantly damaged if what they call a “moral obligation” to investors, amounting to about $7 million a year, is not met.

OU and the top credit analyst for the state say they disagree; last week, the rating agency S&P Global issued a report keeping the university’s long-term debt rating at A+.

But in mid-September, S&P downgraded the Cross bonds for a second time, to CC negative — meaning S&P considers default “a virtual certainty.”

The situation has raised quiet concerns throughout state government.

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Jury convicts man of murder in daughter's death

Thu, 10/03/2019 - 8:19pm

By Tim Willert
Staff writer twillert@oklahoman.com

NORMAN — A jury has convicted a man of first-degree murder for shooting his daughter in the face and recommended he spend the rest of his life in prison.

Jurors deliberated for about three-and-a-half hours Wednesday before finding Ronald McMullen guilty following six days of testimony and a simulated crime scene recreation by the defense.

McMullen, 45, of Norman, was charged in the June 29, 2017, shooting death of Kailee McMullen, 22.

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Norman principal retires a year after bus crash that injured 27

Wed, 10/02/2019 - 8:26pm

By Nuria Martinez-Keel
Staff writer nmartinez-keel@ oklahoman.com

A Norman principal cited in a 2018 bus crash has retired from education.

Ty Bell announced by email his retirement from Cleveland Elementary on Wednesday.

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Adopt a pet: Oklahoma City-area pet adoption options

Wed, 10/02/2019 - 12:00am

From Staff Reports

Bethany Animal Control Shelter: 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Read more on NewsOK.com

Hair of the Dog | Oktoberfest taps into patrons' love of beer, animals

Wed, 10/02/2019 - 12:00am

Staff reports

NORMAN — Fans of local craft beer and furry friends can unite to raise funds and awareness at the fifth annual Hair of the Dog | Oktoberfest, planned from 6 to 9 p.m.

Read more on NewsOK.com

Attorneys for opioid maker want judge to correct alleged $107 million mathematical error in judgment rendered against them

Tue, 10/01/2019 - 8:19pm

By Randy Ellis
Staff writer rellis@oklahoman.com

NORMAN — Attorneys for Johnson & Johnson say a judge made a huge computational error of more than $107 million in calculating the $572 million judgment he rendered against them at the conclusion of a recent Cleveland County nonjury trial.

Johnson & Johnson attorneys claim Judge Thad Balkman intended to order the drug company and its affiliates to pay the state $107,683 — not $107,683,000 — to develop and disseminate treatment evaluation standards for neonatal abstinence syndrome.

The judge slipped up and added three zeros to that part of the judgment, upping the amount to 1,000 times more than the amount intended, drug company attorneys contend.

The judge should "correct this inadvertent error" and reduce the judgment by more than $107 million when he issues his final order, the attorneys contend.

Neonatal abstinence syndrome is a group of conditions that occur when babies withdraw from opioids or certain other drugs they have been exposed to in the womb before birth.

Officials with the Oklahoma Attorney General's Office declined to say Tuesday whether they believe a mistake was made.

“Given the pending matter both before Judge Balkman and the Supreme Court, we aren’t going to comment outside of what has been filed with the courts at this time,” said Alex Gerszewski, spokesman for Attorney General Mike Hunter.

Judge Balkman is expected to consider that and other issues at a hearing scheduled for 1 p.m.

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Texts show relationship between dad, victim

Mon, 09/30/2019 - 8:17pm

By Tim Willert
Staff writer twillert@oklahoman.com

NORMAN — Text exchanges between a father and daughter in the days leading up to her death revealed Monday his obsession with her whereabouts and his resentment when she didn't want to spend time with him.

Ronald McMullen of Norman, is charged with first-degree murder in the June 29, 2017, shooting death of his daughter, Kailee McMullen, 22.

Read more on NewsOK.com

Police: Murder defendant tried to wipe blood off face, hands

Thu, 09/26/2019 - 8:26pm

By Tim Willert
Staff writer twillert@oklahoman.com

NORMAN — Body camera footage shown to a jury Thursday captures a murder defendant trying to wipe blood off his hands and face with a towel and ignoring commands to stop.

Police officer Aaron Deese said he tried to take the towel away from Ronald McMullen to preserve evidence.

"His wife had to tell him to give me the towel at least twice," Deese testified.

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Achievers: 4-H'ers recognized

Wed, 09/25/2019 - 12:00am

Metro area 4-H students were recognized during the 98th State 4-H Roundup that took place on the Oklahoma State University campus.

Karina Feng, of Norman, received two scholarships, including the Rule of Law Graduating Senior Scholarship, and the Advanced Fabrics and Fashion Scholarship.

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Adopt a pet: Oklahoma City-area pet adoption options

Wed, 09/25/2019 - 12:00am

Bethany Animal Control Shelter: 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Read more on NewsOK.com

Trial begins in daughter's shooting death

Tue, 09/24/2019 - 8:24pm

By Tim Willert
Staff writer twillert@oklahoman.com

NORMAN — A man accused of fatally shooting his daughter in the face moved her body and then waited several minutes to call police, a patrol supervisor testified Tuesday.

Ronald Lee McMullen Jr., 45, of Norman, is charged with first-degree murder in the June 29, 2017, shooting death of Kailee McMullen, 22.

Read more on NewsOK.com

State Briefs

Tue, 09/24/2019 - 8:23pm

OKLAHOMA CITY

Free prostate cancer screening offered Saturday

Northeast Oklahoma City Health Task Force and Oklahoma City Ward 7 Councilwoman Nikki Nice are encouraging men to take advantage of free prostate cancer screening.

Screenings and information will be available from 9 a.m.

Read more on NewsOK.com

McMullen murder trial begins today

Tue, 09/24/2019 - 2:31am

The two-week trial of a man accused of shooting his daughter in the face and killing her begins today.



Read more on NewsOK.com

Eyeing a comeback in Oklahoma, Bernie Sanders rallies supporters in Norman

Mon, 09/23/2019 - 8:21am

By Carmen Forman
Staff writer
cforman@oklahoman.com

NORMAN — Bernie Sanders rallied thousands of supporters at a local park Sunday as he pushes for a second victory in Oklahoma, a state he won during the 2016 presidential primary.

In a 39-minute speech, the U.S. senator from Vermont ran through a slew of his policy proposals, including Medicare for all, raising the minimum wage, free college tuition at public colleges and universities and a climate change plan that helps workers in fossil fuels jobs transition.

Sanders also took shots at President Donald Trump, but not rival Democratic presidential candidates, at the rally held at Norman's Reaves Park.

Sanders started off with a nod to Oklahoma’s own Woody Guthrie, whom he called one of the country's great songwriters.

He said Guthrie’s song “Which Side Are You On?” is asking whether people whether they are on the side of working people or powerful, wealthy people.

“We are here to say to Woody, 'we are on the working side of this country,'” he said.

The presidential hopeful devoted a large portion of his speech to talking about the inequality between the top 1% of people in America and those who are at the bottom and struggling to get by.

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Fans off the field pay homage to football teams

Wed, 09/18/2019 - 12:10am

Staff reports

The spirit of Friday night football is heightened by the pageantry and sounds that accompany the high school pastime.

Sights and sounds beyond the football game on the field can include lavender and cornflower blue twilight skies, costumed cheering fans and a multitude of band students playing horns and drums.



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Public meetings on Norman Forward Senior Wellness Center design planned Sept. 18, Oct. 30

Wed, 09/18/2019 - 12:00am

Staff reports

Norman residents are invited to provide their input on the design of the new Norman Forward Senior Wellness Center at public meetings that will be Wednesday and Oct.

Read more on NewsOK.com

Lecture to share 'Ripple Effect' of photographer's nonprofit

Wed, 09/18/2019 - 12:00am

Staff reports

NORMAN — Norman Cultural Connection will host a presentation by Annie Griffiths, one of the first female photographers at National Geographic, at 2 p.m.

Read more on NewsOK.com