OHP trooper claims race prompted dismissal

Sunday, January 29th 2006, 8:13 pm
By: News On 6

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- A former Oklahoma Highway Patrol trooper says he was fired in November because he is black.

Leo Bray was a 17-year patrol veteran who recently served in Iraq. He joined with local leaders of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People Saturday to express outrage at his firing.

A patrol spokesman declined comment Saturday, saying he did not know specifics of Bray's complaints.

Court records show Bray's troubles apparently began in 2002, when a white trooper Bray was evaluating claimed Bray drew back his arm as if to throw a punch and used a racist expression. Both men underwent polygraph examinations, and Bray failed.

He was demoted and filed a lawsuit alleging he was discriminated against because he is black.

Records show the case has been assigned to a mediator, but also is set for trial in April.