Carol Louise (Tilley) Karnes McCool, 93

Born May 7, 1926

Died February 21, 2020

Timothy C. "Tim" Innis, 58

Born May 12, 1961

Died February 20, 2020

Dauna W. Bebee, 85

Born October 26, 1934

Died February 20, 2020


Our death notices and obits are always free to the families and funeral homes.

Saturday, February 22, 2020, 7:17 AM

Seven hundred sixty five people signed a petition to put an issue on the ballot June 30 to revoke the city charter and turn Muskogee’s government from a city manager system to a strong mayor system.

Under the current system, Muskogee’s day-to-day operations are handled by a professional city manager, who answers to the city council. The mayor has little power, other than as a member of the city council. Under the proposed change, the mayor would run the city day-to-day, and ostensibly draw a paycheck instead of the city manager. Currently, city councilors and the mayor are not paid.

Proponents of the city manager system say it insulates the daily running of the city from the whims of politicians, while proponents of the strong mayor system say it allows someone elected by the people to make such minute and ongoing decisions.

The city charter requires 25 percent of the number of voters in the last election to sign in order to get the issue on the ballot. Just under 3,000 people voted in the last election, which required that 748 people sign the petition. After disqualifications, there were 765 signatures on the petition.

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Friday, February 21, 2020, 1:14 PM

Emergency workers assess the damage a dually did to a sign.

A dually pickup truck slammed into a sign outside MedNow Urgent Care clinic just east of Walmart on Shawnee Bypass just a short time ago, according to Muskogee Police.

The wreck is being worked as an injury accident, though police Sgt. CB Abel said information is currently unclear on how many were injured and what their ages are.

Details on how the wreck happened or what condition the driver was in are still being investigated.

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Friday, February 21, 2020, 10:11 AM

Christopher Wayne Foreshee

Christopher Wayne Foreshee, 25, of Muskogee is in the Tulsa County Jail, charged with lewd proposals to a child, soliciting a minor for indecent exposure and using technology to engage in sexual communication with a minor, according to police and court records.

Foreshee was allegedly using Facebook to communicate with a police officer disguised as a 14-year-old girl, police state. Oklahoma law forbids lewd proposals or sexual communications with any person “the person believes to be a child under sixteen years of age.”

Tulsa Detective Jason Weis said Foreshee reached out to him over Facebook Messenger as Weis was posing as a 14-year-old girl who had been bullied.

Foreshee, according to police, started to compliment the “girl” on how pretty she was and daring her to send pictures via Messenger — and later an app that would allow them to text each other.

He then is accused of telling the “girl” she was “hot” and asked if she would send pictures of her genitals if he sent pictures of his. According to prosecutors, he later sent her pictures of his genitals and demanded that she respond in kind.

These discussions allegedly occurred on Jan. 10. US Marshals helped the Tulsa authorities apprehend Foreshee. A warrant was issued on Feb. 10, and Foreshee was arrested on Feb. 13. His bond has been set at a total of $50,000.

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Friday, February 21, 2020, 9:14 AM

The Kiowa Tribe agreed to charter Oklahoma’s oldest operating institution of higher learning on Thursday when Kiowa Tribal Chairman Matthew Komalty and Bacone College President Dr. Ferlin Clark signed an agreement at the tribe’s headquarters in Carnegie, Oklahoma.

“We are honored to have the Kiowa Tribe join our consortium of Oklahoma tribes as we transform Bacone College into a tribal college to provide educational opportunities to tribal members,” Clark said. “We continue to seek formal designation as a tribal college, and we’re grateful to the Kiowa Tribe for their unanimous support.”

Komalty said he is honored to be a part of chartering Bacone College, where his father and brother had both been students.

“I’m honored because of what Bacone College has stood for all these years, the students they have served. They’ve had some trials, but it appears Bacone is on its way back up,” Komalty said. “They should be recognized especially for their efforts to bring back culture. Those efforts make all tribes stronger.”

District 7 Legislator Modina Waters sponsored the resolution for the tribe to charter Bacone College, which will offer reduced tuition to all Kiowa Tribal citizens.

“I met Dr. Clark almost two years ago at our Fourth of July Kiowa Gourd Clan celebration,” Waters said. “We developed a friendship that led us to chartering Bacone College, and we look forward to having that relationship with Bacone.”

In addition to the Kiowa Tribal charter, the United Keetoowah Band of Oklahoma Indians, Osage Nation, Otoe-Missouria Tribe, and Cheyenne and Arapaho Tribes of Oklahoma have also chartered Bacone College.

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Friday, February 21, 2020, 8:36 AM

The 53rd Annual Muskogee Azalea Festival Parade will step off in downtown Muskogee at 11 a.m. on Saturday, April 11. The theme for the 2020 Parade is “Television shows through the decades.”

Anyone is welcome to enter the parade. From civic clubs, school groups, churches, dignitaries; to elected officials, queens, equine groups, and car and motorcycle clubs, the parade is a microcosm of what this area has to offer. The deadline for entry is Wednesday, April 1, at 5 p.m., and all that is required to enter is to fill out a registration form to apply for approval.

The Muskogee Azalea Parade will begin at Seventh Street and Okmulgee in downtown Muskogee and travel East to Second Street then North one block to Broadway, and on Broadway to Sixth Street. The announcing stand will be in front of the Muskogee Civic Center Plaza on Okmulgee between Fourth and Fifth Streets.

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Thursday, February 20, 2020, 7:58 AM

William Frank Murch

William Frank Murch, 54, of Warner is headed to the state penitentiary after pleading guilty to failure to comply with sex offender registration, according to court records, but the plea will send him to prison for a trio of 2009 convictions for lewd molestation, rape by instrumentation and forcible sodomy. Those convictions’ sentences had been suspended, but are now revoked, meaning he must go to prison to serve the time.

In the 2009 cases, Murch was convicted of shoving his hand down a minor girl’s pants and rubbing her vagina, using his finger to penetrate the girl and forcing the girl to give him oral sex.

In the most recent case, he was charged with lewd or indecent proposals to a child under 16 for allegedly sexually assaulting a girl who was living with him and his girlfriend. That case was dismissed as part of a plea agreement featuring the revocation of the 20-year suspended sentence. But he was convicted of failure to register as a sex offender, a felony, and sentenced to five years in prison, to run concurrent to the 20 years.

Murch’s girlfriend, Rachael Fraley, is facing two felony charges: enabling child sexual abuse, and child neglect. Her preliminary hearing on the charges is set for March 25.

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Wednesday, February 19, 2020, 1:37 PM

The Cherokee Nation’s newest Career Services office is now open in Muskogee to help tribal citizens with employment training opportunities and job assistance.

Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Chuck Hoskin Jr., District 4 Tribal Councilor Dr. Mike Dobbins and Career Services Executive Director Diane Kelley joined Career Services staff and leaders from the city of Muskogee to hold a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the new office.

“Our goal is to have tribal services accessible for our citizens no matter where they live,” said Chief Hoskin. “I hope this permanent location will see our hard-working staff serving more of our citizens in the Muskogee area who reach out for help.”

The new facility is at 1305 S. Country Club Road and gives the department a permanent location for serving tribal citizens in the Muskogee area.

“I couldn’t be happier for the employees who have been working with what little office space they had available, but who now have a permanent location to help more citizens,” said Councilor Dobbins. “This expansion will increase all the services the department has to offer because now there is a main location for our Muskogee employees to work from.”

The new Muskogee office provides space for assisting Cherokees with economic development, employment programs including youth and adult programs, vocational training, job corps recruitment and placement and others.

“We will be able to service clients at full capacity now that we have a proper space for our staff in Muskogee,” said Kelley. “Having multiple locations in surrounding counties makes Career Services more accessible to citizens who aren’t able to travel to Tahlequah for service.”

The Career Services office in Muskogee can be reached by calling 918-682-2077 or faxing 918-682-2497.

For more information about Cherokee Nation Career Services, go to


Wednesday, February 19, 2020, 8:01 AM

Learn more about your cultural heritage at the Cherokee Family Research Center’s genealogy workshop on Saturday, March 21.

Led by an experienced, professional genealogist, the workshop will teach participants how to begin their genealogical research and provide various resources available to assist them.

Educational sessions provide an in-depth look at the history of the Cherokee National Female and Male Seminaries, the US Assimilation and Civilization policy’s effect on the Cherokee Nation, and the 13 detachments on the Trail of Tears.

The workshop will take place in the Osiyo Training Room, 17676 S. Muskogee Ave.,Tahlequah, behind the Cherokee Nation Gift Shop, from 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., with a 45-minute break for participants to have lunch on their own.

The cost to attend is $50, and registration is limited to 50 people on a first-come, first-served basis. Proceeds from the workshop will support the Cherokee Family Research Center’s annual ancestry conference in the fall.

To reserve space or get more information, please call 1-918-456-6007, ext. 6162, or email

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Tuesday, February 18, 2020, 9:16 AM

The Tulsa Ballet will give one performance only at the Muskogee Little Theater on March 8 at 2 p.m.

The group will present “This Must Be the End,” with choreography by Daniel van de Laar. The performance is a high-energy stretch of near nonstop dancing, accented with moves that come straight out of a mosh pit.

Another presentation, “Peter and the Wolf,” with choreography by Ma Cong, is Sergei Prokoflev’s symphonic fairy tale illustrated by the dancers as each character is represented by a corresponding instrument in the orchestra.

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Tuesday, February 18, 2020, 9:11 AM

Oklahoma State Conference National Association for the Advancement of Colored People has announced its endorsement of State Question 805 as Oklahoma confronts its mass incarceration crisis.

“Oklahoma’s black and minority communities make up a disproportionate share of our state’s prison population, and a leading reason for that is prosecutorial discretion with sentence enhancements that allows people to be sentenced more than once for the same crime,” said Anthony R. Douglas, president, Oklahoma State Conference NAACP. “We are fully aware that District Attorneys across the state have also publicly opposed the measure, saying it would negatively impact public safety. However, what they don’t tell you is that the over-incarceration of blacks and minority populations is not because these Oklahomans are more prone to commit crimes.”

Oklahoma has the highest incarceration rate of black men in the nation. One in 29 African American adults in Oklahoma is in prison. Black people make up 7 percent of the Oklahoma population, but 26 percent of the incarcerated population.

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Saturday, February 15, 2020, 5:58 PM

A 15-year-old girl died this morning in a single-vehicle wreck on State Highway 10 just north of Braggs, according to the Oklahoma Highway Patrol.

The girl, whose name was withheld, was a passenger a 2006 Ford F-150 driven by another juvenile near South 95th Street East, when the wreck occurred, the patrol reported. The driver was admitted to Saint Francis Hospital in Tulsa with head and internal injuries. The girl was pronounced dead at the scene.

Neither the driver nor the passenger were wearing seatbelts.

The cause and circumstances of the wreck and the condition of the driver are under investigation.

The Braggs schools postponed basketball district finals scheduled for tonight until Feb. 17. Parent conferences have been rescheduled to Feb. 24 and 25, and pictures scheduled for Monday will be rescheduled.

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Friday, February 14, 2020, 9:11 AM

A Coweta man was hurt late last night after he was involved in a pursuit by the Oklahoma Highway Patrol just north of Muskogee County on US 69, according to the patrol.

The man, whose name was withheld by the patrol, was driving a 2007 Ford Focus, pursued by Trooper Jacob Smith of Muskogee. As the pursuit approached Baker Road, Smith performed a tactical vehicle intervention, which the patrol stated caused the Focus to depart the roadway to the right and roll 2 1/2 times, coming to rest on its top.

The man was flown by helicopter to Saint Francis Hospital in Tulsa, where he was admitted with internal trunk and sternum injuries.

The wreck did an estimated $4,000 damage to the man’s car and $500 to the patrol car.


Thursday, February 13, 2020, 5:01 PM

Michael Tomblinson

Michael Keith Tomblinson, 38, of Muskogee was convicted just now of sexual abuse of a child under 12 in Muskogee County District Court. The jury recommended he serve the rest of his life in prison.

The victim, who was five years old, disclosed to family members that Tomblinson used his penis to penetrate the child’s rectum on multiple occasions when the child’s mother was away.

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Thursday, February 13, 2020, 4:15 PM

Michael Foutch

Michael Joe Foutch, 48, of Haskell was arrested on Feb. 11 after he called the Muskogee County sheriff’s office, complaining of a dog bite.

When deputies noticed Foutch didn’t appear to have a dog bite, they interviewed the dog’s owner at a trailer park in Haskell, where the dog was tied by a leash to the trailer. The owners, according to Muskogee County Undersheriff Michael Mahan, had video of Foutch teasing the dog, then producing what appeared to be a knife and slashing the dog across the face with the knife.

Foutch was arrested on a complaint of animal cruelty and taken to the Muskogee County Jail. Today, he was charged with felony animal cruelty in Muskogee County District Court.

He is due for a sounding docket on Feb. 27. Judge Robin Adair set his bond at $15,000.

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Thursday, February 13, 2020, 8:55 AM

The Muskogee police released the following statement just now:

Overnight officers responded to a burglary in the 1800 block of North County Club where the suspect ran from the vehicle and was not located.

This morning officers responded to a call of shots fired in the area of Eufaula and North Country Club. Officers made contact with a subject there who advised that when she came out to start her vehicle there was a male subject asleep inside it. The suspect got out and fired shots and took off running.

We have our K9 officers as well as several other officers in the area at this time actively searching for the suspect who is described as a white male, thin build with short brown hair. He is wearing jeans and a brown jacket.

Due to this active search for the suspect Muskogee High School is currently on lockdown.

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Wednesday, February 12, 2020, 1:40 PM

Dr. J’Dene Rogers, a licensed clinical psychologist originally from Muskogee, served as Psychologist of the Day for the Oklahoma House of Representatives on Feb. 10 at the invitation of Rep. Avery Frix (R-Muskogee).

“I’m thankful for the role Dr. Rogers has served in helping people in the Muskogee community and the surrounding area,” Frix said, “and that she was willing to lend her talents and expertise for us at the House of Representatives.”

Dr. Rogers obtained her doctorate from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville, and a master’s in social work from the University of Oklahoma. She worked in the Chicago area for several years before returning to Oklahoma in 2001. She now serves as a community liaison with several local government and non-profit organizations.

Dr. Rogers founded Integrity Pathways, a multi-disciplinary outpatient clinic serving more than 700 clients annually in Muskogee and the surrounding areas. She also served on the Executive Board of the Oklahoma Psychological Association as secretary and is currently president-elect.

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Wednesday, February 12, 2020, 10:17 AM

The 2020 Chili and Barbecue Cook-off will be hosted April 17 and 18 at Hatbox Field, organizers announced. Exchange Club and the city have discussed the change for years, making the move to provide better parking and better access to utilities for the cook teams.

“For many years, we have had discussions about what is the next step for the cookout and how we can attract more teams and people to the event to further our overall mission of raising funds for local children’s charities,” Robert Smith, event chairman, said. “This move not only gives us more than enough room for cook teams, but plenty of parking for the public that does not disrupt local businesses.”

The annual Friday Night Cook-off, Kick-off Concert will be inside Hatbox Hangar One. Cody Canada and The Departed will play that show.

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Tuesday, February 11, 2020, 8:25 PM

Marlon Coleman

Marlon Coleman won 40 percent of the votes in Muskogee’s mayoral race today, giving him a 10 percent advantage over Wayne Divelbiss. Coleman and Divelbiss will face a runoff on April 7 to determine the final winner. Interim Mayor Janey Cagle Boydston got 24 percent of the vote, placing her in third place. Tracy Cole got 5 percent of the vote and “DJ Highpockets” John Lowrimore got 2 percent of the vote, with 62 votes.

Stephanie Jones Morgan will be the Ward 1 city councilor, coming in with 71 percent of the vote. Evelyn Hibbs defeated Ashley Davis by 65 percent to fill the Ward 1 unexpired term.

Muskogee insurance agent Traci McGee will be the Ward 4 councilor with 53 percent of the vote over Wayne Johnson and James Webb.


Tuesday, February 11, 2020, 5:31 PM

Jim Paul Blair poses with his wife, Katey and his assistant, Angelina Cummings, right.

Jim Paul Blair, whose passion for Muskogee and music helped shepherd the Oklahoma Music Hall of Fame through its most difficult times, and advocated doggedly for the Muskogee hospital, has died of complications resulting from a recent illness. Blair’s wife, Katey Sherrick Blair, posted the news 30 minutes ago to her Facebook page.

Blair had been in the hospital for several days suffering from an undisclosed illness with pneumonia-like symptoms, friends and family said.

He was popular around town for his Buddy Holly and Hank Williams impressions, his frequent and fruitful collaborations with other Muskogee musicians and his work with the Oklahoma Music Hall of Fame. Blair was also in charge of the Muskogee Medical Foundation, which manages the land on which Saint Francis Hospital sits, and frequently held the hospital’s operator, Saint Francis, to the fire to fulfill the conditions of its lease.

Blair also initiated and shepherded the music festival GFest and was a founding partner in Max’s Garage.

No arrangements have been made yet.

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Tuesday, February 11, 2020, 8:35 AM

William D. Lowe, Bacone College human resources and special projects director, is one of three recently appointed to the National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development’s Board of Directors.

Lowe, also the Okmulgee District Representative for the Muscogee (Creek) Nation National Council, served in the Marine Corps from 1993-2002. He has more than 20 years of experience in management, tribal business development, governance and negotiating both tribal and government contracts. Lowe also serves on the boards of the American Indian Chamber of Commerce of Oklahoma, the Okmulgee County YMCA, the Five Civilized Tribes Museum in Muskogee, and is a Bacone College graduate.

The National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development is a non-profit organization which assists American Indian tribes and their enterprises with business and economic development, according to its website,

Its mission is to: “Develop and expand an American Indian private sector which employs Indian labor, increases the number of viable tribal and individual Indian businesses, and positively impacts and involves reservation communities, by establishing business relationships between Indian enterprises and private industry.”

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Monday, February 10, 2020, 5:40 PM

A silver alert has been issued by the Muskogee Police Department for a missing 78 year old man believed to be in imminent danger.

Gordon Lee Hughey was last seen by his son in the 400 block of North 12th Street in Muskogee Oklahoma at approximately 1:30 this morning. Hughey suffers from dementia.

Hughey is described as a white male clean shaven and thin build. He is 6 foot tall and weighs 135 pounds, he has black eyes and gray hair. He was last seen wearing a brown Carhart jacket, black and red plaid shirt, denim jeans and cowboy boots.

Please contact the Muskogee police Department at 918-577-6906 or Crime stoppers at 918-682-COPS (2677) if you see a subject matching this description.

UPDATE: The police released the following:

At approximately 2:30pm officers were called to the 900 block of Talladega in reference to a male subject that was possibly deceased laying behind the building.

The subject has not been positively identified at this time, however based on the clothing description provided and the clothing that the deceased is wearing he is believed to be the subject from the silver alert that was issued this morning. The family has been notified of this information and we are waiting for official identification to be made at this time.

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Monday, February 10, 2020, 8:17 AM

Cherokee Nation leaders will hand deliver hundreds of homemade Valentine’s Day cards to veterans at the Jack C. Montgomery VA Medical Center in Muskogee.

Each year tribal employees as well as area schools, churches and individuals create handmade valentine cards to thank veterans for their military service as part of the tribe’s annual Valentines for Vets program.

This year, valentine cards will be delivered to area veteran centers and hospitals in Tahlequah, Muskogee, Jay, Fayetteville, Sallisaw, Claremore, Vinita and Talihina. The valentine cards will also be given to veterans during an annual Valentine’s Day celebration hosted by the Cherokee Nation Veterans Center this month.

The tribe’s Valentines for Vets program was started in 2008 by the late Rogan Noble, a Marine Corps veteran and veterans affairs advocate. The program provides handmade valentine cards to Cherokee and non-Cherokee veterans and is part of the National Salute to Veteran Patients.

For more information on the Cherokee Nation’s Valentines for Vets program, call the Cherokee Nation Veterans Center at 918-772-4166.

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Monday, February 10, 2020, 8:10 AM

Jerry N. Barnard, 69, of Porum died yesterday afternoon a mile southwest of Porum after he went to clean out tinhorns in a small creek, according to the Oklahoma Highway Patrol.

Barnard’s wife told police he left his house around 4 p.m. to clean the tinhorns out. Twenty minutes later, she walked the 60 yards to the creek and found him face-down, the patrol reported. His wife rolled him over onto his back, but was unable to get him out of the creek.

Porum Police and Muskogee County EMS arrived on the scene, but were unable to revive him.

Cause of death is being investigated by the Oklahoma Medical Examiner’s office.

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Saturday, February 8, 2020, 10:21 AM

Brandon McFrazier

Around 1:30 p.m. yesterday, police responded to a shooting around 17th and Martin Luther King Streets, police said.

When they arrived, they found shell casings in the street and a 22-year-old man, Brandon Terrell McFrazier, with a non-life-threatening gunshot would in the leg.

Police also made contact with a witness whose vehicle was struck by a bullet as they were driving by the area at the time of the shooting.

The investigation is ongoing.

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Friday, February 7, 2020, 8:04 AM

Country music recording artist James Robert Webb will play the Oklahoma Music Hall of Fame on Feb. 27.

Webb, from Kellyville, walks the line between traditional and contemporary country music.

His sound is driven by his unique, indefinable voice and organic, neo-traditionalist style fused with modern production. His 2016 debut, Pictures, yielded two top-40 singles on the Music Row Country Breakout chart - “Makin’ Love Tonight” and “How That Feels.” Both broke the top 60 on the Billboard Indicator charts. In 2019, one of country music’s most award-winning and renowned producer’s Buddy Cannon (Kenny Chesney, Willie Nelson), took notice of Webb’s unique style. The pair recently finished recording a full-length project coming February 28th.

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Thursday, February 6, 2020, 7:02 PM

Cindy Renee Jones

District Attorney Orvil Loge has charged Cindy Renee Jones, 40, of Fort Gibson with second-degree murder in the Feb. 4 death of her boyfriend, Danny Reed, 28.

Jones and Reed were arguing, according to an affidavit filed with the case. Jones told police Reed slapped her in the face. Prosecutors allege she retrieved a revolver from another room and returned to the room Reed was in. Jones told police Reed slammed the door as she was entering the room, “causing the revolver to discharge.”

Reed was struck in the chest with the bullet, and later died from the injury.

Jones is also charged with misdemeanor reckless conduct with a firearm.

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Thursday, February 6, 2020, 6:05 PM

Muskogee’s Big Papa’s Okie Toke medical marijuana dispensary is hosting a patient drive at the Muskogee Civic Center tomorrow, where prospective patients can get their doctor’s recommendation for $25 and uploading that recommendation to the state for another $25.

The recommendation and upload must be paid in cash.

Patients who want to finish the application to the state can do so there as well. If they are on SoonerCare, Medicare or Medicaid, the cost is $22.50. Otherwise, the state’s fee is $104.30, and that fee must be paid with a credit or debit card.

The dispensary is also hosting raffles with giveaways, and BossLady will pay the full costs for 25 patients who sign up.

The event runs from 3 to 8 p.m. on Friday and noon to 5 p.m. on Saturday.

For questions, call 405-264-6221.

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Thursday, February 6, 2020, 9:56 AM

Michael Mahan, left, accepts his badge from Sheriff Terry Freeman

Muskogee County Sheriff Terry Freeman promoted Chief Deputy Michael Mahan to the office of Undersheriff for Muskogee County.

Mahan has served in law enforcement since 1991 as a Muskogee Police reserve officer, then police officer — during which he served as the public information officer, community relations officer and sergeant in the patrol division — and from 2018 to the present as chief deputy of the Muskogee County Sheriff’s Office.

Mahan graduated in 1993 from Northeastern State University with a bachelor of science degree in criminal justice.

He is a lifelong resident of Muskogee County, married to his wife, Karen, for 24 years with seven children.

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Thursday, February 6, 2020, 8:07 AM

Patrick David Weller

Patrick David Weller, 46, of Muskogee is now a registered sex offender and must complete 10 years of probation after he was convicted yesterday of molesting an 18-year-old woman with diminished mental capacity.

The woman, whose name is being withheld, told police Weller performed oral sex on her and grabbed her breasts on a separate occasion.

He had faced similar allegations before against a different woman, according to family members.

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