News Headlines - April 30

Oklahoma Supreme Court will not take jurisdiction in case involving an Ardmore attorney and District Judge

The Oklahoma Supreme Court has decided it will not take jurisdiction in a case involving an attorney and District Judge in Ardmore.

Last year, Attorney Jason May filed a lawsuit against District Judge Dennis Morris, alleging he was charging some defendants, who claimed to be indigent, more fees than the law allows. A few weeks after the filing, Morris reportedly filed an administrative order that changed the application forms so they no longer include the option for a defendant to contribute to the costs of court appointed counsel.

May filed his suit out of behalf of three petitioners whom, he said, paid $500 in extra fees and another paid $250 that they believed they were obligated to pay by the district court, but ordered to pay by Morris.

The State Supreme Court ruled the point was moot and declined to accept jurisdiction in the case.

Morris says the defendants were deemed not indigent and that they were required to contribute to the costs of court-appointed counsel according to their ability to pay, which does not require them to pay the entire bill.

May said the next step is to bring the matter to District Court and attempt to get his clients’ money returned.

Home destroyed in Johnston County fire

A fire destroyed the home of a Johnston County family on Tuesday, leaving them out of a place to live.

The Mannsville Volunteer Fire Department responded to the fire at around 2 p.m. on Church Road. They were aided by Ravia, Tishomingo and Milburn for several hours.

It is still unclear what started the fire, but when crews arrived on scene, the house was already fully-engulfed at which point, firefighters took a defensive position to control the blaze. High winds made it especially difficult to control.

No one was injured in the fire.

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