Two Oklahoma City men suspected in a string of car wash robberies find themselves facing much more serious consequences after a 56-year-old man suffered a stroke as he was being robbed and subsequently died.
Police say someone robbed a man on September 1 at a car wash on S. Walker in Oklahoma City, when he suffered a stroke. The perpetrator or perpetrators fled, and the victim was found unresponsive later that morning. He was transported to a local hospital, where he died the following day.
Just a few days later, on September 5, three more men were robbed in separate incidents at different car washes in the area. In each case, the victim was choked and beaten during the robbery, and in one case, the perpetrators stole the victim's car.
Then, less than a week later, on September 11, three more robberies took place at local car washes, each within an hour of the other. In these cases, like the others, the victim was physically assaulted during the robbery. In two of the three robberies, the suspects stole the victim's vehicle.
It was the car theft that allowed the capture of two suspects after an officer police helicopter identified one of the stolen vehicles. Police arrested Adrian Walker, 20, and Quantray Burton, 22.
Walker and Burton were arrested on multiple robbery complaints and a complaint of second degree murder.
Investigators say that although two men were arrested in connection with the robberies, they believe there are more co-conspirators at large. Some of the victims say they were attacked and robbed by four men.
Conjoint robbery, or robbery committed by two or more persons, is a felony punishable by 2 to 50 years in prison, under 21 O.S. § 800. Although the suspects have not been formally charged, each his held on 10 complaints of conjoint robbery.
Second degree murder is defined by Oklahoma law in 21 O.S. § 701.8 as a homicide that occurs under one of the following situations:
- When perpetrated by an act imminently dangerous to another person and evincing a depraved mind, regardless of human life, although without any premeditated design to effect the death of any particular individual; or
- When perpetrated by a person engaged in the commission of any felony other than the unlawful acts set out in Section 1, subsection B, of this act.
Under the current criminal complaints against them, police describe the second degree murder as occurring under both sets of circumstances: both "evincing a depraved mind" and in the commission of a felony other than those which would elevate the charge to first degree murder. A homicide is first degree murder if it occurs in the commission of another murder or attempted murder, shooting with intent to kill, intentional discharge of a firearm into a building, forcible rape, armed robbery, kidnapping, escape from custody, eluding police, first degree burglary, first degree arson, and drug trafficking, distribution, or manufacture.
In other words, if the suspects had been armed in committing the robbery, they would have been charged with first degree murder as a result of the victim's fatal stroke.
Second degree murder is punishable by 10 years to life in prison.