TULSA - A Tulsa County District Judge set trial dates for brothers accused of lining up four women in a south Tulsa apartment and executing them early last year.
James and Cedric Poore each face four counts of first-degree murder, but they will not face the death penalty when their trials begin early next year.
James Poore's trial date is now set for January 12, 2015; Cedric Poore's for February 9, 2015.
Lead prosecutor Doug Drummond tells KRMG the D.A.'s office debated long and hard about whether to seek the death penalty in the case.
D.A. Tim Harris' office sent a statement to KRMG last week, which read in part:
The crimes are tragic and it has emotionally impacted each of the families who lost loved ones. But, at the end of the day, we must objectively consider a wide variety of factors, including the admissible evidence as well as the legal issues involved. After doing that objective analysis, we are declining to file a bill of particulars, seeking the death penalty.
KRMG called Drummond Monday for additional insight into the decision.
He could not offer specifics with the trials pending, but said the basic reason is because the cases are so complex, they would rather ensure convictions and put the defendants away for life than risk a jury that might be unwilling to come to a guilty verdict with possible death penalties pending.
"We try to be objective and try to determine what is the right thing to do given the circumstances we have in this case," he told KRMG, "and here, we felt like not filing a bill of particulars, or not seeking the death penalty, was the way to go."
Family members of the victims were consulted in the course of deliberating that decision.