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Spain waives right to jury trial

Spain waives right to jury trial

By Ken Childers

ONL Editor

On the morning his trial was scheduled to begin, a man accused of shooting his mother in law to death with a shotgun waived his right to a jury trial.

Jury selection was scheduled to get underway Tuesday in the first-degree murder trial of Anthony Roy Spain, but the defendant, at the last minute, opted to be tried by a judge instead of a jury. His next court appearance has been scheduled for Jan. 23, 2020.

Spain allegedly shot and killed Teresa Smith on Jan. 5 during an altercation at his home on West Highway 56. According to an affidavit, Smith was shot once in the torso area and once in the head.

Spain’s wife, Sabrina, reportedly told OSBI Agent Derek White she tried unsuccessfully to intervene during the altercation and witnessed the shooting before gathering her four children and leaving the residence. 

According to the affidavit, Sabrina told the agent she observed Spain assaulting Smith on the couch in the living room and separated the two, but they continued to argue. She also said Spain pushed Smith against the living room wall and put his hand on her throat. 

Sabrina further said Smith tried to call police, but Spain broke her phone then went upstairs and retrieved his shotgun, while muttering, “I didn’t want to do this.” Spain fired the shotgun into the ceiling of the living room, then pointed it at Smith and fired. Smith fell to the ground then Spain shot her in the head, Sabrina said.

In May, Sabrina filed a protective order against Spain, according to court documents. In June, he was arrested and charged with violating the order.

During an interview with White, Spain said he returned home from drinking at a friend’s house then he and Smith got into an argument in which she pushed and scratched him. Spain said he defended himself by pushing her onto the couch. Spain then alleged Smith threatened him by saying she would call family members to “take care” of him.

According to White’s report, Spain said he went up to his bedroom closet and retrieved his 12-gauge shotgun, which he claimed was to defend himself. Spain said he fired a shot into the ceiling of the living room to get Smith to leave. He also told the agent he saw something shiny in Teresa’s hand before firing the shotgun at her.

Spain is represented by Attorney Jack B. Justin of the Norman-based Elkin Jenkins law firm. The state is represented by Albert “Kell” Kelly, Assistant District Attorney for Okfuskee and Creek County.

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