Though the specifics of each and every criminal case are unique, there are certain types of cases which may seem routine. However, every so often a case will come across the desk of an Oklahoma City criminal defense lawyer with details that make the case truly stand out from the others.
For example, earlier this week in Vinita, Oklahoma, a woman was arrested on complaints of marijuana possession with intent to distribute, possession of a firearm in the commission of a felony, and maintaining a dwelling where drugs are present.
During the search of the woman's property, a Craig County drug task force seized guns, six pounds of marijuana, and $277,000 in cash. At first glance, the scenario seems typical of a drug arrest. However, when you find out that Darlene Mayes, the woman arrested, is 73 years old, the story takes an unexpected twist.
Arrest photos show Mayes to be a tiny, white-haired, little old lady in glasses--not typically what one would expect from a drug task force arrest. Mayes claims the $277,000 in seized cash is for her retirement. It is not clear if the retired DHS worker has yet retained an Oklahoma drug crimes lawyer, but authorities allege that Ms. Mayes is a major player in the northeastern Oklahoma drug trade.
The pot granny isn't the only case making headlines because of its bizarre details this week. A domestic dispute case in Oklahoma City made headlines largely in part due to the participants involved. Oklahoma has a high rate of domestic violence, so ordinarily, a fight involving a woman and her fiance would not make the news--or if it did, it would be a slow news day indeed.
However, if the participants in the fight with the fiance are twins who work at the same strip club, and the fight involves a baseball bat, the details are just enough to boost the story from mundane to newsworthy. Police responded to the scene of the altercation, where they received multiple accounts of what happened from those involved.
According to the police report, officers responded to a home where Stacy Helguera, 25, her twin sister Tracy Murray, Murray's fiance Brooks Brady, 25, and a cousin all reside. Helguera initially told police that when she and her sister returned home from the strip club where both women work, a drunken Brady began assaulting the women and the cousin with a baseball bat.
She later changed her story to say that she and Brady were arguing when Brady punched her in the face, causing her sister to come to her defense. When Murray tried to help her, says Helguera, Brady began attacking her. Murray's version of the story differs from her sister's. She says that both Brady and Helguera were drunk, and that Helguera had been antagonizing Brady. When Helguera slapped Brady, says Murray, he began to violently fight back.
Murray says that she tried to choke Brady from behind to stop the fight, and that Brady then began to beat her instead. Of course, Brady has a different story to tell. While he initially told police that the sisters "jumped him," he later said that all of his injuries were from work. None of the three wanted to press charges, but Oklahoma does not require a victim's consent to press charges in a domestic violence case.
All three combatants were arrested and face differing charges:
- Stacy Helguera - domestic assault and battery with a dangerous weapon
- Tracy Murray - domestic abuse by strangulation
- Brooks Brady - violation of the domestic abuse act
Marijuana busts and domestic abuse cases are both fairly common in Oklahoma. However, when you sprinkle in unusual details like a geriatric drug lords and twin strippers, these cases cross into a whole new realm. Oklahoma City defense lawyers know that every case is unique, and must work with those individual details to create the strongest defense possible for both ordinary and extraordinary cases.