TODAYS TOP STORIES
Joshua Durcho Mentally Fit To Stand Trial
After a five-day hearing, an Oklahoma judge rules- a man accused of killing his girlfriend and her four young children, is not mentally disabled, allowing prosecutors to seek the death penalty.
Canadian County District Judge Gary Miller ruled Joshua Durcho does have a learning disability, but he does not meet the legal definition of mental retardation- which his lawyers were trying to seek. "The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that we cannot give the death penalty to a mentally retarded person," said David Slane, Fox 25 Legal Analyst. "That's what the defense was trying to do, was first- attempt to save this young man's life." Oklahoma law prohibits the death penalty for defendants with an IQ of 70 or below. But, records show Durcho scored a 72 twice on IQ tests given to him after his arrest in 2009.
"Had the Judge found that he was mentally retarded, under the law, they would not have proceeded further. He would have been treated as a person incompetent to stand trial," said David Slane.
Fox 25's Kisha Henry visited the town of El Reno, where Summer Rust and her four young children, all under the age of eight, were found strangled to death. "Whenever I saw the children, and saw that there were babies and little children... it was horrific," said one woman. "I think he deserves the death penalty," said one man. "He should already be dead," said another.
But, even though the Judge has declared Durcho as mentally competent to face the death penalty, that may not happen. Slane says, after the jury decides his guilt or innocence, the decision must be made again. "If they find that he's guilty, then the defense gets to put on the defense of mental retardation all over again and it will be up to the jury to decide," said Slane.
Durcho faces five counts of first degree murder for the January 2009 strangling deaths of Summer Rust and her four children- who were all under the age of eight-years-old. Durcho's trial is scheduled to begin September 17.
Posted: Thursday, August 2 2012, 09:45 PM CDT
IN OKLAHOMA NEWS
Power of Moore tornado dwarfs Hiroshima bomb
May 21, 2013 18:31 GMT
By SETH BORENSTEIN AP Science Writer
WASHINGTON (AP) --
Wind, humidity and rainfall combined precisely to create the massive killer tornado in Moore, Okla. And when they did, the awesome amount of energy released over that city dwarfed the power of the atomic bomb that leveled Hiroshima.
Meteorologists contacted by The Associated Press used real time measurements to calculate the energy released during the storm's life span of almost an hour. Their estimates ranged from 8 times to more than 600 times the power of the Hiroshima bomb.
Scientists know the key ingredients that go into a devastating tornado. But they are struggling to figure out why they develop in some big storms and not others. They also are still trying to determine what effects, if any, global warming has on tornadoes.
Sometimes the stories with the most impact come directly from the viewers. If you have a story that needs to be told, we want to hear it. Fill out the form below and let us know what stories need to be told.
From the FOX 25 First Forecast Center..Isolated strong to severe t'storms are expected for south central and eastern Oklahoma. There is a severe t'storm watch until 7 a. ...
JPMorgan's Dimon survives shareholder referendum
TAMPA, Fla. (AP) -- Shareholders at JPMorgan Chase will let Jamie Dimon, the chairman and CEO, keep both his jobs.
BC-US--Dow Record-Three Personal Stories, 1st Ld-Writethru,1173
Dow Record: Three tales of ups, downs and changes
AP Photo FX102, FX103
Eds: With BC-US--Dow Record. Adds photos.
By SCOTT MAYEROWITZ
AP Business Writer
NEW YORK (AP) -- When the Dow first crossed 14,000, investors were overjoyed. ...
IN THE NEWS: iPHONE RECOVERED AFTER THEFT IN OREGON
MEDFORD, Ore. (AP) -- A smartphone, plus a not-so-smart criminal -- equals an arrest in Oregon.
WASHINGTON (AP) -- George Washington University students will soon be walking all over the White House and the Capitol, too.