Outside Agency To Review Tulsa Sheriff's Office After Fatal Shooting

Monday, May 4th 2015, 1:05 pm
By: Emory Bryan

Tulsa County Commissioners approved the start of a process to review the operation of the Sheriff's Office. It's another reaction to the Eric Harris shooting by Reserve Deputy Bob Bates.

Bates shot and killed Harris after an undercover gun sting. He says he pulled his gun instead of his Taser.

An outside agency will take a look at how the office is organized, including the operation of the reserve deputy program.

It's a project that will go out for bids - and that's what commissioners approved Monday morning. Sheriff Stanley Glanz said he's already made some changes in the office - and more are likely.

TCSO Reserve Deputy Controversy Special Coverage

"How the organization is set up, maybe we can make some changes that will help," Glanz said. "Certain people reported to my undersheriff and I counted on that person to do a lot of things. Those people now report directly to me, so I've made some changes."

The sheriff's office reviewed the shooting right after it happened, judging it an "excusable homicide," and while the death started a criminal case, how the sheriff runs the reserve program is now part of two internal affairs investigations, and another review that's coming from an outside group.

Sheriff Glanz says while his undersheriff resigned - a major involved in the operation that led to the shooting - remains in the office.

Major Tom Huckeby, according to Glanz, is on leave, and has not resigned.

"Considering the emotions involved, I thought it only fair that he take some time off and get his head straight and give me time to look at any matters that might affect his career," Glanz said.

"It's pretty important we make the right decisions, and I want to try and make the right decision there."

Glanz has already said he doesn't plan to resign and doesn't plan to seek re-election. The cost and the group doing the outside review will come out of the bid process.

One of the former sheriff's deputies who accused members of the agency of lying about Bob Bates' training has fired his attorney.

Motion To Withdraw Attorney

Order To Withdraw Attorney

Warren Crittenden terminated the services of Daniel Smolen on April 27, 2015. In court documents, he said Smolen is "only using me to further cases you have for other clients and I no longer wish to be part of the show."

Smolen is the attorney for the family of Eric Harris.