Motive For Cushing Triple Homicide Still Under Investigation

Tuesday, February 17th 2009, 8:43 am
By: News On 6

Associated Press

CUSHING, Okla. (AP) -- A 20-year-old man was arrested miles away from a house where the bodies of three people were found early Tuesday, authorities said.

Oklahoma State University police took Robert Chad Barela into custody without incident shortly before 11:30 a.m. near the intersection Oklahoma Highway 51 and Western Avenue in west Stillwater, university director of communications Gary Shutt said.

Barela left his car in a Wal-Mart parking lot and walked east about 2 miles before he was captured, Shutt said.

Cushing Police Chief Terry Brannon said the bodies of two adult males and an adult female were discovered about 5:20 a.m. Authorities have not identified the victims, and the causes of death have not been released.

A person Brannon said is a "significant witness" called police after finding the bodies.

Brannon said he couldn't discuss the relationship between Barela and the victims because the victims have not been identified. No motive has been established.

Brannons stepson and Barela were teammates on a youth soccer team that Brannon coach, the police chief said.

Schools in Cushing, about 25 miles southeast of Stillwater, were locked down while law officers searched for Barela, district superintendent Eddie Williams said. Classes remained on their normal schedule, but all doors were locked.

The last homicide in Cushing was in April 2007.