Father Of Slain Tulsa Teen Speaks Out

Wednesday, May 13th 2009, 10:09 pm
By: News On 6

By Lori Fullbright, The News On 6

TULSA, OK -- The father of murder victim Jason (Jake) Trent says the shock has worn off and now he's mad.  He's mad that his son was killed for no reason and that people who know something aren't talking to police.

Jason Trent is a man who wants to turn a tragedy into triumph and he believes the best way to do that is to reach out to kids when they are young to stop them from getting into a lifestyle that focuses on guns and killing.

"I thank God we'll have this to treasure," said Jason Trent, father of the murder victim.

Trent finds comfort in a memory book that his son had completed as part of a senior class project.  The 18-year-old was set to graduate from Tulsa's McLain High School next week.  He loved to roller skate with his dad.  He worked at Hillcrest and he wanted to go to Tulsa Tech to learn how to be a barber so he could open his own shop.

What he was not, was a gang member.

"My baby was not a gang banger. His friends, I can't speak for, they had some problems, but they've been his friends since elementary school," said Trent.

Trent's son was with those friends Monday night playing dominoes when he happened to be the one who answered the door, when other teenagers opened fire.  The high school senior was killed and a baby was shot in the back.

"This is my son, not something I'm hearing about on the news now.  Not something I'm talking about on my radio show.  This is my son," said Trent.

The elder Trent does the midday show on AM 1340 and he is active with the Full Gospel Family Outreach Ministry which has purchased a building to turn it into a youth center.

They've stripped the floors, installed a sprinkler system and gotten chairs donated for the auditorium and computers for the lab.

Trent feels finishing this youth center is key to reaching kids early to steer them away from a life of violence.  But, he says the city promised them a $225,000 grant last fall, but so far they don't have the money.

"It seems like every time we turn around, the city comes up with something new to keep us from opening the youth center," said Jason Trent.

The City of Tulsa tells The News On 6 it's working out some legal issues concerning the grant.

The funeral for Jason (Jake) Trent is still pending, but his parents will attend his graduation next week and receive his diploma.