OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) _ A federal judge refused to suppress evidence in a methamphetamine case that was found by law enforcement officers who were acting on a tip by a slain Oklahoma Highway Patrol trooper's widow.
U.S. District Judge Vicki Miles-LaGrange ruled Friday that a Cotton County officer's search of a suspect's pickup truck in May was justified.
Undersheriff Tim King testified that he stopped the pickup on Interstate 44 traveling 73 mph in a 70-mph zone on May 16.
King said Linda Green, widow of trooper Nikky Joe Green, told officers a man in the truck had bought large amounts of starter fluid and camping fuel at a store near Wichita Falls, Texas.
King said Linda Green has been active in efforts to reduce meth labs since her husband was murdered in December 2003 after a traffic stop in Cotton County. He said he considered her a reliable source.
King waited for the pickup Linda Green followed away from the Texas store to return to Oklahoma, then stopped it.
He said the traffic violation was not the reason he stopped the truck. He felt Green's information provided reasonable suspicion for a stop, King said.
A bag of what was believed to be methamphetamine was found after the driver consented to a search of the truck, King said. The officer also located items used to manufacture the drug, including more than $1,000 worth of psuedoephedrine, he said.
Kris Deven Youngstedt, 32, and passenger Andy Nelson King, 41, were arrested and subsequently indicted for possessing psuedoephedrine to be used to manufacture methamphetamine.
King is set for trial next week, while Youngstedt is set for a plea.