District Attorney candidate facing criminal charge

District Attorney candidate facing criminal charge

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PONCA CITY -

A district attorney candidate in Kay County finds himself behind bars Friday afternoon. Attorney Scott Loftis is facing charges of conspiracy to bring contraband into the Kay County jail, suborning perjury and creating fake court documents.

Loftis has been a vocal critic of the DA and others in the judicial system in Kay county; the potential conflict of interest led to current Kay County District Attorney Brian Hermanson removing himself from the Loftis investigation. The Oklahoma Attorney General's office assigned the case to District 10, Osage and Pawnee Counties.

"It went to the grand jury and after a couple of days of testimony it was my decision to go ahead and pull it from the grand jury," said District 10 First Assistant District Attorney Mike Fisher.

Fisher said he believes they have a strong case against Loftis, but he would not comment on the details of the investigation. "I would rather not try the case through the press," Fisher told Fox 25.

Court documents show Terome Porter, a former client of Scott Loftis, told investigators his ex-attorney would bring him cell phones during attorney-client visits. Detention officers caught Porter with the cell phone. Investigators reported there were over 100 calls and text messages to and from Scott Loftis' phone number.

Porter also said he got packages delivered by Loftis during these visits. "Some packages would have tobacco in them and a couple of times they would have marijuana in them. Sometimes there would be both," prosecutors wrote in the seven-page affidavit.

Investigators say Loftis used Porter to recruit other inmates to be clients. Porter said his help would also include beating people up who caused Loftis, or his then partner Gale McArthur, problems either "inside or outside the jail."

The court documents show Loftis did call to report one of the packages that contained drugs when it arrived at his office. The woman who delivered it told investigators she had made several such drops, but Loftis reported her when she tried to include crushed up Lortabs.

"For anyone to do that is inappropriate and certainly, if the allegations prove to be true, certainly for an attorney that is not something you would condone," Fisher said.

The court documents show that a majority of the witnesses who agreed to testify against Loftis are known drug dealers, users or other accused or convicted criminals. Fisher said they were concerned about the reliability of those statements, but that after time they found consistencies between the statements. "Information we were being given by people who would not have an opportunity to get together and corroborate their stories," Fisher said, "So we believe there was clearly, and we still believe there is clearly, some validity to those allegations."

However court records indicate the main witness against Loftis, his former client Porter, was given a plea deal to his murder charge in exchange for his testimony. Online court records show Kay County Prosecutor Brian Hermanson asked the court to change the first-degree murder charge to first-degree manslaughter.

The plea deal was struck on the agreement Porter would "fully cooperate and truthfully testify in the investigation and trials concerning the bringing of contraband into the Kay County Detention Center."

Online records from the Department of Corrections show Porter will be eligible for a parole hearing in February of 2018.

When Fox 25 contacted Loftis he said his attorney advised him not to make any comments on the case.

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