'Not guilty' pleas entered in Creek County double homicide case

Tuesday, April 30th 2002, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

SAPULPA, Okla. (AP) _ Three men accused of the fatal beatings of a Creek County couple pleaded 'not guilty' Monday.

Special District Judge Richard Woolery set June 28 preliminary hearings for Mitchell Coleman, 25 and Leslie R. Dobbs, 28, both of Sapulpa, and Eddie L. Simmons, 38, of Tulsa.

The men are accused in the slayings of Earl Martin Kirkwood, 55, and Karen Kay Strange, 41, whose bodies were found March 28 at their home west of Sapulpa. Coleman also was charged with attempted first-degree rape for allegedly attacking Strange.

Kirkwood and Strange were bludgeoned in the attack, and Kirkwood was stabbed in the hip and rib cage, authorities said. Both died of blunt trauma to the head, the state medical examiner ruled.

Creek County authorities interviewed Coleman before the beatings and he told them he was upset with Kirkwood for having a sexual relationship with Coleman's estranged wife.

He told authorities to arrest Kirkwood for manufacturing methamphetamine, which was found at the crime scene.

All three men are felons.