Two convicted in Edmond slayings exhaust appeals

Tuesday, October 10th 2000, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) _ Two men on Oklahoma's death row for the slayings of three grocery store employees in Edmond exhausted their appeals Tuesday.

The U.S. Supreme Court denied appeals by Mark Andrew Fowler and Billy Ray Fox as well as an appeal by Paris L. Powell in a separate case.

Gerald Adams, a spokesman for the attorney general's office, said he anticipated the attorney general's office would ask for an execution date soon for Fowler and Fox. Adams said Powell moves into the federal portion of his appeals for a 1993 drive-by shooting.

Fox and Fowler were convicted of the July 3, 1985, deaths of John Barrier, 27; Chumpon Chaowasin, 44, and Rick Cast, 33. The three worked as employees of Wynn's IGA in Edmond and were killed during a robbery early in the morning. Cast and Chaowasin were each shot in the head, execution style. Barrier was stabbed nine times in the neck, chest, back and head and was bludgeoned with a shotgun.

Fox and Fowler were accused of herding the night-shift employees into a backroom of the store and killing them. Fox had once worked at the store.

Prosecutors concluded that Fox shot Cast, the night manager, and Chaowasin, with a 16-gauge shotgun. They alleged that Fox clubbed Barrier while Fowler stabbed him.

About $1,200 was taken from cash registers, but the men weren't able to get into the safes. District Attorney Bob Macy said that failure sparked the killings.

Defense attorneys at the trial asked the jury to consider evidence that the men acted under the influence of drugs and give them life sentences.

Fowler and Fox accused each other of being the triggerman in the store.

Powell was convicted of a 1993 gang-related shooting in which an innocent bystander was shot and killed in Oklahoma City.

Adams said Powell was convicted along with Yancey Douglas of the shooting death of Shauna Farrow, 14, of Oklahoma City.

The teen-ager was shot as she walked along a city street with Derrick Smith, 17, on June 24, 1993.

Smith said he recognized Powell, a member of a rival gang, as the driver of a car from which shots were fired at him. Smith was wounded and played dead. He saw Farrow fall face down after being shot. Powell was wounded in what authorities described as friendly fire.