The Oklahoma Bar Association has declined to take up an ethics complaint that had been filed against Tulsa County District Attorney Steve Kunzweiler just days before the high-profile trial of former Police Officer Betty Shelby was set to begin.
Jerad Lindsey, chairman of the Tulsa Fraternal Order of Police, told our partner The Frontier in an interview Monday that he had received a letter from the Bar Association telling him his complaint against Kunzweiler would not be looked into.
Kunzweiler had previously called into question the timing of the ethics complaint, given that it was filed less than a week before the Shelby trial began.
In the complaint, the Tulsa FOP alleged Kunzweiler rushed to charge Shelby before having reviewed all of the evidence and prior to the completion of a Tulsa Police Department investigation, which the FOP said found the shooting justified.
When the complaint was filed, Kunzweiler called it “a distraction” and said that he was “not happy about” the fact that it might interfere with the Shelby trial.
Kunzweiler confirmed Monday that he had received notice from the Bar Association that it would not be looking into the complaint.
“The Bar Association’s decision speaks for itself,” he said in a message to The Frontier. “My focus and attention remains as it has for the past 28 years — concentrated upon securing public safety on the cases which are in front of me.”
Nevertheless, Lindsey defended the timing of — and decision to file — the complaint, saying that he felt it “had the desired effect.”