Andrew Mathis' Preliminary Hearing Continues

Monday, February 23rd 2009, 11:46 am
By: News On 6

By Jeffrey Smith, The News On 6

TULSA, OK -- A judge calls off testimony in a deadly hit and run case on Monday afternoon.  Prosecutors say Andrew Mathis drove into a crowd of people after Halloween costume party on Brookside.  The crash killed two, and injured five others.

Tulsa Police say 25-year-old Andrew Mathis got into a fist-fight, walked across the street with his friend to his car and then accelerated into a gathering crowd of people.  Two men, Dennis Cox and Carlos Lopez, were killed instantly.

"The loss of my brother doesn't get any easier at all. And, I guess just hearing it, you know, it's just, it's just heartbreaking. Just the way that he died," said Carlos' sister, Lillian Lopez.

More than 30 friends and family packed the courtroom for Monday's hearing.  They listened as more than a dozen eyewitnesses took the stand, including some victims.

12/28/2008  Related story: Tulsa Man's Court Hearing Delayed

Some testimony brought the entire courtroom to tears, especially the words from a nightclub security guard who said he looked Andrew Mathis straight in the eye and pleaded with him to stop driving because there were bodies underneath.

"He's just a kid. You know. But, there's a lot of anger. To throw your life away like that, to see his family members in the court. You could tell they were hurting as much as we are. But, they have their son. And, we don't have our brother," said Carlos' sister, Lillian Lopez.

The passenger in Mathis' car testified the two are best friends, and after the fight he thought they were going home.  Instead, Mathis drove back into the crowd.      

Lopez says she struggles with his decision every day.

"We'll never see him again. And, when you realize that over and over again that he's never going to be here again, it's just something you can never get over," said Carlos' sister, Lillian Lopez.

Mathis faces two counts of first degree murder and five counts of assault with a deadly weapon.  His preliminary hearing should wrap up in late March.