Death Penalty Off the Table, Jury Trial Set for Tulsa Man Charged with Elderly Woman's Death
By Homa Bash
Prosecutors will not be seeking the death penalty and a jury trial date was set for the man accused of murder in the 2012 death of an elderly Tulsa woman at an arraignment Monday morning.Tyrone Woodfork, 21, is accused of breaking into the North Tulsa home of Bob, 90, and Nancy Strait, 84, on March 14th, 2012, severely beating both of them, and also sexually assaulting Nancy Strait, who died from her wounds a day later.Bob Strait passed away shortly after.According to Assistant District Attorney Steve Kunzweiler, the decision to not seek the death penalty for Woodfork stems primarily from the suspect's mental limitations. "There was much debate within our office as to whether we should seek the death penalty on this Defendant because of the egregious nature of the crime and the age of Ms. Strait. But ultimately the fact he had a borderline IQ score, as well as other mental history, led us to our decision," First Assistant District Attorney Doug Drummond said.Woodfork is now scheduled for a jury trial on October 21, 2013.Drummond said the D.A.'s office hopes the trial provides the victims' family members with closure from the tragedy, and the decision to not pursue a death sentence was discussed with them beforehand.Woodfork is charged with first-degree murder, first-degree rape, rape by force & fear, two counts of robbery with a firearm, assault & battery with a dangerous weapon and burglary.He has been held in the Tulsa Co. Jail since his arrest last year.
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