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Family Fights Release Of Former Tulsa Cop Convicted In 1982 Crossbow Murder

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Jimmie Dean Stohler, in 2002. Jimmie Dean Stohler, in 2002.
A picture shows Michele Powers on her third visit to her son, celebrating his fourth birthday. Later that day, she was shot. A picture shows Michele Powers on her third visit to her son, celebrating his fourth birthday. Later that day, she was shot.
"It was so premeditated, so horrible, I just don't think he should get out. I can't even imagine a person getting out, who's done something like that," Rochelle Ruth said. "It was so premeditated, so horrible, I just don't think he should get out. I can't even imagine a person getting out, who's done something like that," Rochelle Ruth said.
Jimmie Dean Stohler, was convicted of killing Powers in 1985. Jimmie Dean Stohler, was convicted of killing Powers in 1985.
TULSA, Oklahoma -

A former Tulsa police officer in prison for murder could soon be a free man. The parole board recently recommended parole for Jimmie Dean Stohler and the paperwork is now on the governor's desk.

In 1982, Michele Powers was shot in the chest with a crossbow, which was loaded with a poisoned bolt.

A friend of her ex-boyfriend and former Tulsa cop, Jimmie Dean Stohler, was convicted of killing Powers in 1985.

We interviewed the murder victim's twin sister, Rochelle Ruth, who said Stohler's release is her worst nightmare. She said Powers was a smart, compassionate, loyal person who could be hard-headed, with a fiery temper.

"It was so premeditated, so horrible, I just don't think he should get out. I can't even imagine a person getting out, who's done something like that," Ruth said.

Powers' boyfriend, former Tulsa cop Robert Doss, and Stohler were buddies, and Stohler reportedly didn't like her from day one.

She had filed a paternity suit to get financial support for the child she had with Doss. Doss accused of her abuse, and her son was taken away for a couple of years. She fought back and was given visitation rights, shortly before she died.

A picture shows Powers and her son on her third visit, celebrating his fourth birthday. Later that day, she was shot.

2/23/2007 Related Story: Parole Denied For Former Police Officer

"He tried to kill her by knife, was going to stab her, but people came out and that blocked that. Then, going to shoot her, but couldn't get a good shot. Followed her to work, but no shot, so that's when he got the crossbow," Ruth said.

The 14-inch crossbow was loaded with a poison that stops a person's muscles. Powers lost almost all of her blood, was partially paralyzed, and then slipped into a coma. She died six days later.

Ruth said, even when in agony, Powers thought of others.

"When they shot her with that crossbow and she pulled it out of her chest, and someone came to help her, she told them to get back, 'It's not safe out here,'" Ruth said.

Stohler was sentenced to life in prison for the murder.

This is the third time Ruth has fought the parole of her sister's killer.

This time, Powers' own son and the judge on the case wrote letters in support of Stohler getting out after serving 31 years.

Ruth countered by getting hundreds and hundreds of people to sign a petition, which she delivered to the governor's office.

Doss was charged with recruiting Stohler to commit the murder, but he was acquitted and went on to raise their son. There was a third man, Jack Ensminger, Jr., who Stohler accused of being the actual triggerman, but he was acquitted, as well.

The governor is expected to decide on Stohler's parole within the next couple of weeks. We'll keep you updated on that decision.

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