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Study: Quakes Spurred on Faults Dead for 300 Million Years

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A new university study has found that earthquakes registered recently in North Texas have occurred on faults awakened by human activity after they had lain dormant for at least 300 million years.

The study by Southern Methodist University researchers was published online last week in the journal Science Advances. The research supports recent assertions that the earthquakes were induced by human activity, not naturally.

The conclusion is apart from previous study results that correlated earth tremors to the timing of wastewater injection associated with the fracking process of oil and gas drilling. Nevertheless, the researchers say it corroborates those previous findings.

Texas, Oklahoma and other states have had earthquakes in recent years that scientists have linked to wastewater injection wells.

Latest Oklahoma news, sports, business and entertainment at 1:20 a.m. CST

 

ALCOHOL SALES-UNIVERSITY

Oklahoma State regents approve alcohol sale pilot program

STILLWATER, Okla. (AP) — Oklahoma State University soon will serve alcohol venue-wide during athletic events.

The Stillwater News Press reports Oklahoma State/A&M Board of Regents approved a pilot program for alcohol sales Friday. The school has previously sold alcohol only in suites.

Officials plan to test the program during spring sporting events, such as baseball and softball. The school's president will then decide whether to extend sales to fall sports, including football.

University spokesman Gary Shutt says other Big 12 members, such as Texas and West Virginia, have successfully implemented alcohol sales in public seating areas at athletic events. Shutt says both schools found that serving alcohol resulted in fewer alcohol incidents on game days.

OKLAHOMA STATE-GUNDY

Mike Gundy gets pay raise after Tennessee interest

STILLWATER, Okla. (AP) — Mike Gundy, who affirmed his commitment to Oklahoma State this week following reported interest from Tennessee, is getting a raise.

The Oklahoma State football coach tweeted "Cowboy For Life" earlier this week after he was linked to the Vols' open job. And on Friday, the Oklahoma State/A&M Board of Regents approved an addendum to Gundy's contract that includes a $675,000 pay increase, bumping his salary to $5 million per year.

The change also increases a buyout provision in the contract from $3 million to $5 million if Gundy leaves early.

Gundy, who had signed a five-year contract extension in June, is Oklahoma State's longest-serving and most successful head football coach. The No. 18 Cowboys are 9-3 this season and 6-3 in the Big 12.

KILLINGS BY POLICE-TULSA

NAACP seeks Tulsa police records on use-of-force, complaints

TULSA, Okla. (AP) — The NAACP has filed an open records request with the Tulsa police department seeking documents related to use-of-force incidents and complaints it's received from citizens.

The country's oldest civil rights organization announced the request Friday, and is also seeking copies of training manuals, community policing guidelines and records on stops and searches of suspects.

The nonprofit says it has been monitoring citizen concerns about excessive force since last September, when a white Tulsa police officer fatally shot an unarmed black man.

The officer, Betty Jo Shelby, was charged with manslaughter in the death of Terence Crutcher and was acquitted in May by a jury.

Prosecutors argued that Shelby overreacted. Videos from a patrol car dashboard and a police helicopter showed Crutcher had his hands in the air.

EX-OFFICER ARRESTED-OKLAHOMA

Former Oklahoma officer pleads guilty to sexual assault

(Information from: Tulsa World, http://www.tulsaworld.com)

MUSKOGEE, Okla. (AP) — A former police officer in Oklahoma has pleaded guilty to a federal count of violating the civil rights of a woman he sexually assaulted during a traffic stop.

The Tulsa World reports that 40-year-old Jerry Lynn Gragg entered his plea Wednesday in U.S. District Court in Muskogee. Under a plea agreement, he's required to forfeit his law enforcement certification and comply with federal and state sex offender registration requirements.

Court records show Gragg stopped the woman's vehicle on Jan. 21. Police allege she told them Gragg made sexual advances and forced her to perform oral sex.

Court records indicate the woman later filed a complaint against Gragg and provided a stained blouse matching his DNA.

Authorities say Gragg admitted to his acts, including aggravated sexual abuse.

A sentencing hearing has not yet been set.

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HOMELESS STRUCK-OKLAHOMA

Oklahoma inmate testifies in vehicular death case

(Information from: Tulsa World, http://www.tulsaworld.com)

TULSA, Okla. (AP) — An Oklahoma inmate has testified that a man accused of running over people he believed were homeless confessed to carrying out the attacks.

The Tulsa World reports that Eddie Walling testified Thursday that 40-year-old Jeremy Dean Thacker told him he was the one who "ran over all the homeless people" while they were incarcerated at the Tulsa Jail.

Walling alleges Thacker told him he was looking to buy methamphetamine when he saw a man and a woman sleeping under an overpass and decided to run them over with his truck.

Shawn Birdo died in a vehicular assault Sept. 4. James Russell and Birdo's girlfriend, Cynthia Wallace, were also injured.

Thacker has been charged with first-degree murder in connection to Birdo's death. He also faces five counts of assault and battery with force likely to produce death.

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DRILLING-EARTHQUAKE STUDY

Study: Quakes spurred on faults dead for 300 million years

DALLAS (AP) — A new university study has found that earthquakes registered recently in North Texas have occurred on faults awakened by human activity after they had lain dormant for at least 300 million years.

The study by Southern Methodist University researchers was published online last week in the journal Science Advances. The research supports recent assertions that the earthquakes were induced by human activity, not naturally.

The conclusion is apart from previous study results that correlated earth tremors to the timing of wastewater injection associated with the fracking process of oil and gas drilling. Nevertheless, the researchers say it corroborates those previous findings.

Texas, Oklahoma and other states have had earthquakes in recent years that scientists have linked to wastewater injection wells.

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