- Associated Press - Sunday, October 18, 2015

TULSA, Okla. (AP) - Tulsa County has spent $143,400 in legal fees and other costs stemming from the fatal shooting of an unarmed man by a reserve sheriff’s deputy in April.

Documents show that the county has spent the money on legal fees for Robert Bates, who has since left the force, and on Sheriff Stanley Glanz’s unsuccessful effort to block a grand jury investigation, The Tulsa World reported Sunday (https://bit.ly/1MMs1ot ). The money has also gone toward the costs of conducting the grand jury inquiry and for an outside agency to review the sheriff’s office.

Glanz resigned after being indicted by the grand jury and Bates hired his own attorneys after being charged with second-degree murder in the April 2 shooting death of Eric Harris.

The amount does not include the cost of a countywide special election to pick a sheriff to fill Glanz’s unfinished seventh term, which election board officials said could be more than $100,000. It also does not include an estimated $42,000 incurred because volunteer reserve deputies did not work the 2015 Tulsa State Fair after the reserve program was suspended in May following the shooting by Bates.

“The office is continuing to examine all costs directly related to the Eric Harris shooting in order to determine its financial impact on the County,” spokesman Justin Green said in a statement to the newspaper.

Bates has said he meant to use a stun gun, but instead fired his revolver as deputies subdued Harris following a brief foot pursuit during an undercover gun investigation.

Costs incurred so far include: $31,956 to the law firm of Wood Puhl & Wood to represent Bates during the criminal and administrative investigations of the shooting; $13,233 by the Tulsa County District Court Clerk’s Office for the grand jury investigation; $23,253 to the law firm of McDonald McCann Metcalf & Carwile to contest the grand jury petition; and $75,000 to contract with Texas-based Community Safety Institute to conduct a complete review of the Sheriff’s Office.

The institute’s review is separate from state and federal investigations into allegations of misconduct that became public in a leaked 2009 internal investigation into Bates. The report contained details of falsified records, intimidation of subordinates and special treatment favoring Bates.


Information from: Tulsa World, https://www.tulsaworld.com

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