Tulsa Man Acquitted Of Murder, Arson; Guilty Of Making Meth In Deadly Fire
TULSA, Oklahoma - A Tulsa County jury acquitted a man of murder and arson charges but found him guilty of making meth in a deadly apartment fire nearly three years ago.
Mark Roberts' trial started last week and ended with the verdicts early Thursday morning.
Roberts was charged with two counts of murder, one count of arson and one count of making meth.
Those charges stem from a fire that started in Roberts' apartment at the Royal Arms Apartments in the 5100 block of South Norfolk Avenue on March 10, 2009.
Two people died in the fire and another was permanently disabled.
Since Roberts has three previous felony drug convictions, the range of punishment was 21 years to life in prison and the jury chose the maximum.
"He hasn't learned his lesson. Leopards don't change their spots. There are people who can be rehabilitated. I don't think he's one of those people," said Debbie Morris, a victim's relative.
Roberts will be formally sentenced on January 27, 2012.
Roberts will remain in custody at the Tulsa County jail until then and is already planning his appeal.
Roberts' defense attorney said the investigation was shoddy, especially evidence-gathering and his team will base its appeal on that.