Two Men Shot, Killed By TPD In Separate Weekend Incidents
Tulsa's 49th and 50th homicides of the year occurred over the weekend, each at the hand of a Tulsa police officer.
According to Tulsa Police Department public information officer Jeanne Pierce, on Saturday afternoon officers responded to a call of an attempted break-in at a "secure facility" near 2400 North Harvard Ave.
Pierce says upon arrival, officers found Jonathan Randell, 25, sitting outside.
"He was holding a knife in his hand," Pierce said. "He made several statements about committing suicide and wanting to die. He started cutting his own wrists with that knife."
Pierce said she believes less-lethal pepper ball rounds were used but were "not effective." Pierce said a member of TPD's Crisis Intervention Team (formerly known as Mental Health Resource Officers) spent "20 to 30 minutes" attempting to "talk him down."
"They receive specialized training in dealing with individuals with mental illness, or individuals who are having suicidal thoughts, so there were officers on scene that had that training during that negotation, I guess that 20 to 30 minutes when they were trying to talk him out of what he was doing," Pierce said.
Pierce said Randell then charged at the officers with the knife, at which point at least one officer opened fire. Randell was pronounced dead at an area hospital.
Less than 12 hours later, at around 1:30 a.m. on Sunday, officers from TPD and the Oklahoma Highway Patrol entered into a 40-minute pursuit with a man who was driving erratically near 61st and Peoria, Pierce said.
A police helicopter was used to follow the man's vehicle to 21st Street and 145th East Avenue, where police were able to use "stop sticks" to puncture the vehicle's tires, at which point the driver, Earl Barton, Jr., 42, stopped, exited the vehicle, and ran through an apartment complex, according to Pierce.
"Officers were able to catch up to him and the suspect began fighting with officers," Pierce said. "We did try two deescalation techniques with a Taser and pepper balls, but the driver then produced a knife and attempted to assault one of the officers. At that time he was shot by an officer."
Barton was also pronounced dead at a hospital, Pierce said.
The identities of the officers involved in the shootings will not be released until the Tulsa County District Attorney's office clears the investigations, Pierce said.
Randell and Barton were the 16th and 17th individuals fatally shot by law enforcement in Oklahoma this year, according to data compiled by the Tulsa World.