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Fears Deemed Too Dangerous To Be Released

Updated:

A Sequoyah County District Judge says Daniel Fears will stay at a state run mental hospital. Judge Jeff Payton ruled on Friday that Fears is still a threat to society and should stay in treatment at the Oklahoma Forensic Center in Vinita.

In 2002 Fears, then 18, took his father's shotgun and began shooting at neighbors and bystanders in Sallisaw, said police. Sixty-one year old Patsy Wells and 68 year old Reba Spangler were killed; eight other people were wounded before Fears surrendered to police.

Fears was convicted of first degree murder and sentenced to life in prison without parole in 2004, that conviction was later overturned when Fears was deemed not guilty by reason of insanity by the state Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals. After changing the guilty verdicts, Judge Payton ordered Fears be taken to the Vinita facility for treatment and evaluation.

The insanity verdict means Fears will remain in supervised treatment until a panel of experts and a judge agree he is no longer is a threat to the public. If and when that happens he could be released.

Related Stories:

10/29/2002 Suspect In Rampage To Face Murder Charges

11/10/2002 Sallisaw Shooter Had A History Of Trouble

2/20/2003 Daniel Fears Competency Hearing Request

5/6/2004 Daniel Fears Confession Will Be Allowed In Court

9/16/2004 Jury Seated In Daniel Fears' Trial

12/8/2004 Daniel Fears Given Life Term In Shooting Spree

7/18/2006 Daniel Fears To Stay In Jail For The Time Being

7/20/2006 Oklahoma’s Attorney General Seeks To Overturn A Ruling In The Daniel Fears Case

7/21/2006 Not Guilty

1/30/2007 Daniel Fears Reversal Upheld; Victims Outraged

2/1/2007 Daniel Fears’ Murder Convictions Changed To Not Guilty By Reason Of Insanity

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