Associated Press

Oklahoma National Guard

TULSA, Okla. (AP) — As many as 250 Oklahoma Army National Guard soldiers are being activated to help provide security during President Donald Trump’s campaign rally Saturday in Tulsa, authorities said Wednesday.

Tulsa Police Chief Wendell Franklin said the guardsmen will be used as a “force multiplier” to help secure safety zones around the downtown BOK Center where the rally is to be held.

The guardsmen will be unarmed but will carry shields, batons and pepper spray in case they need to protect themselves, said Guard spokesman Lt. Col. Geoff Legler.

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — One day after Oklahoma State running back Chuba Hubbard lashed out at coach Mike Gundy on social media for wearing a T-shirt promoting a far-right news channel, Gundy apologized.

 

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — For most mayors in deep-red states like Oklahoma, the prospect of hosting the first rally for President Donald Trump in months would be a delight. It would showcase the city on an international stage and draw revenue for local businesses that have been shuttered for months amid the coronavirus outbreak.

 

Trump Campaign

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump said Friday that he is rescheduling his first campaign rally in months to a day later so it won’t conflict with the Juneteenth observance of the end of slavery in the United States.

 

KWGS News File Photo

WYNNEWOOD, Okla. (AP) — Dozens of residents of a small Oklahoma city were temporarily evacuated early Saturday after a train derailed and spilled a hazardous chemical, officials said. 

 

The train went off the tracks at around 2 a.m. in Wynnewood, a community about 65 miles (105 kilometres) south of Oklahoma City, according to BNSF Railway spokeswoman Amy Casas. No one was hurt in the derailment, she said.

Black community and political leaders are calling on President Donald Trump to at least change the date of an Oklahoma rally kick-starting his return to public campaigning, saying that holding the event on Juneteenth, the day that marks the end of slavery in America, is a “slap in the face.”

Trump campaign officials discussed in advance the possible reaction to the Juneteenth date, but there are no plans to change it despite fierce blowback.

File photo

Oklahoma schools are eligible to apply for federal funds available to respond to the coronavirus.

Gov. Kevin Stitt Stitt and state Superintendent Joy Hofmeister said Friday that $16 million is available, with grants ranging from $50,000 to $500,000 based on enrollment as of Oct. 1, 2019. The money is coming from Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act funds controlled by Stitt and the Oklahoma State Department of Education.

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An Oklahoma man who was paralyzed from the waist down in a fall from a bridge when a truck drove through a crowd of protesters in Tulsa is improving, his brother said Wednesday.

Ryan Knight, 33, is hospitalized in stable condition and is regaining use of his hands and arms, but still cannot move his legs after suffering broken vertebra in his neck and back, and a fractured pelvis and shoulder blade, Randy Knight told The Associated Press.

Department of Defense

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — There are 117 new coronavirus cases in Oklahoma and two additional deaths due to COVID-19, the illness caused by the virus, the Oklahoma State Department of Health reported Wednesday.

There have been at least 7,480 confirmed cases and 355 deaths in the state, up from 7,363 cases and 353 deaths reported Tuesday. The actual number of people who have contracted a virus is likely higher because many people have not been tested, and studies suggest people can be infected and not feel sick.

Associated Press

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Oklahoma City police have released body-camera videos of an armed black man who died in police custody last year after telling arresting officers ‘I can’t breathe.’

 

PickPik

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — The federal government approved new gambling compacts between Oklahoma and two tribal nations, Gov. Kevin Stitt announced on Monday, but the governor still remains locked in a legal dispute over tribal gambling with other tribes and legislative leaders from his own party.

The compacts between Oklahoma and the Otoe-Missouria Tribe and the Comanche Nation were both “deemed approved” by the U.S. Department of the Interior following the expiration of a 45-day review period.

The Oklahoma State Department of Health reported another 147 cases of COVID-19 and three deaths over the weekend.

The state now has 7,150 total cases of the illness caused by the coronavirus, and 348 people have died. The seven-day average of new cases has climbed from 65.4 just over a week ago to 92 as of Sunday, according to Oklahoma Watch.

MUSTANG, Okla. (AP) — Authorities are investigating a fatal police shooting in suburban Oklahoma City.

Officers from the Mustang police department found an individual who had been suspected of driving under the influence at a parking lot Friday evening, according to the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation.

Police said 42-year-old Benjamin Ballard of Yukon was fatally shot after he “presented a firearm.” Ballard died at the scene and a firearm was found in the parking lot, according to the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation.

TULSA, Okla. (AP) — A 5-year-old boy drowned in a Tulsa apartment pool Sunday after apparently sneaking out with another child while their parents were sleeping, authorities said.

It was at least the second child drowning in Okahoma over the weekend. A 9-year-old also died in a separate drowning Saturday night in Lake Eufaula, Tulsa television station KTUL reported. The boy, who was from Broken Arrow, was sitting on a swim platform when he stood up and fell into the water, according to the Oklahoma Highway Patrol.

File Photo

Oklahoma State has become the first school to be punished by the NCAA in the fallout from the federal corruption investigation into college basketball. The school plans to fight — and likely won’t be the only one.

The Cowboys’ men’s basketball team was banned from the upcoming postseason among numerous penalties handed down Friday by an NCAA infractions committee panel, which found that former assistant coach Lamont Evans accepted up to $22,000 in bribes intended to help steer athletes to certain financial advisers.

TULSA, Okla. (AP) — One man was killed and another critically wounded in a suspected homicide-attempted suicide Friday at an Oklahoma shooting range, police said.

Local news outlets quote police as saying both men arrived together at the 2A Shooting Center and were shooting from separate lanes when one turned and shot the other multiple times before shooting himself. The victim died at a Tulsa hospital, while the suspect was listed in critical condition.

No motive has been determined, but investigators were reviewing surveillance video.

Stuart Ostler / Oklahoma Capitol

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Oklahoma’s Republican legislative leaders asked the state Supreme Court on Thursday to settle whether Gov. Kevin Stitt overstepped his authority when he reached deals with two Native American tribes to allow sports gambling.

That was Attorney General Mike Hunter’s conclusion in a formal opinion and letter to the U.S. Interior secretary last month.

STILLWATER, Okla. (AP) — A member of a far-right group attended a George Floyd rally in Stillwater armed with a rifle and dressed in tactical gear, which authorities say was legal but inappropriate.

Christopher Autrey, who says he’s a member of the Three Percenters, said he was at the rally Wednesday outside of the police department to prevent protesters from looting local businesses.

Under Oklahoma law, people can openly display and carry loaded weapons in public.

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — The Oklahoma State Department of Health on Wednesday reversed course on its decision from earlier this week to no longer release COVID-19 infection data by city and zip code.

The agency made the move after consulting with Attorney General Mike Hunter, who advised them releasing epidemiological information for statistical purposes is legal as long as no individual person can be identified.

Roland Leach / U.S. Air Force

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — The Oklahoma State Department of Education released guidance Wednesday for how public schools could reopen in the fall that includes recommending the use of masks for staff and students to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

The department’s Return to Learn Oklahoma framework for reopening schools lists several factors for individual districts to consider as they reopen.

Flickr/Mrs. Gemstone / https://www.flickr.com/photos/gemstone/8162709569/

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. (AP) — Native American voting rights advocates are cautioning against states moving to mail-in ballots without opportunities for tribal members to vote safely in person.

In a wide-ranging report released Thursday, the Native American Rights Fund outlined the challenges that could arise: online registration hampered by spotty or no internet service, ballots delivered to rarely-checked Post Office boxes and turnout curbed by a general reluctance to vote by mail.

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OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — A group seeking to reduce Oklahoma’s high prison incarceration rate delivered more than 260,000 signatures to the state on Monday as part of its effort to get a state question on the ballot.

Volunteers with Yes on 805 delivered the boxes to the Oklahoma Secretary of State’s Office. They need about 178,000 signatures of registered voters to qualify the question for a statewide ballot. The governor will set the date of the election once the signatures have been counted.

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Oklahoma has had at least 6,506 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 334 deaths linked to the disease caused by the new coronavirus, the Oklahoma State Department of Health reported Sunday.

The report is an increase of 88 cases but no deaths from Saturday. Nearly 5,500 Oklahoma residents have recovered from the disease, according to the agency.

The actual number of cases is believed to be much higher because of a lack of testing and because some people with the disease don’t show symptoms.

Robby Korth / StateImpact Oklahoma

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt’s administration is scrapping a plan to expand Medicaid on July 1, citing a lack of state funding.

The state’s Medicaid Director Melody Anthony notified the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services in a letter Thursday that the state was withdrawing its proposal.

The Stitt administration pushed for the expansion in March, but after the Legislature narrowly passed bills to help pay for the state’s share, including one that increased a fee that hospitals pay, Stitt vetoed them.

NORMAN, Okla. (AP) — An Oklahoma police officer will keep his job after being disciplined for responding to an email about department-issued coronavirus protective masks by sending racist images of people with white bags over their faces carrying torches, reminiscent of the Ku Klux Klan preparing to lynch black victims, officials said.

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. (AP) — A presidential task force charged with coming up with ways to address missing and slain Native Americans will resume tribal listening sessions Wednesday.

The task force held a handful of sessions in person with tribes and tribal organizations before the coronavirus hit. It’s now turning to teleconferences and webinars to update tribes on its work and get feedback.

Four sessions are scheduled through June 3.

Norman Police

NORMAN, Okla. (AP) — An Oklahoma police officer will be disciplined for violating department policy when he responded to an email about coronavirus protective masks that were issued by sending racist images of people with white bags over their faces carrying torches, reminiscent of black victims being lynched by the Ku Klux Klan, a spokeswoman said Tuesday.

Inhofe Press Office

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Justice Department has closed investigations into stock trading by Sens. Dianne Feinstein of California, Kelly Loeffler of Georgia and Jim Inhofe of Oklahoma, according to people familiar with notifications sent to the senators. The senators came under scrutiny for transactions made in the weeks before the coronavirus sent markets downhill.

Integris

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — An Oklahoma City-based hospital system on Tuesday began allowing limited visitation to most patients, including those with the coronavirus, as the state continues to reopen.

Integris Health said some patients can designate one person as a “patient representative” who can visit between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. daily.

Patients in obstetrics, pediatrics and neonatal intensive care may have two representatives, but no visitors will be allowed for patients in isolation except for those near death.

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As the pandemic upended commencement rituals across campuses, Kim Gaddie wanted to give the University of Oklahoma’s class of 2020 a taste of tradition -- well, kinda.

Armed with boxes of chalk, Gaddie, her husband and a few colleagues spent hours writing the names of graduating seniors on the concrete sidewalk where class members would have lined up to march into the ceremony. By the time they were done, the pathway was festooned with more than 4,000 colorful names.

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