Tulsa judge denies a new trial for convicted murderer

Thursday, December 15th 2005, 10:10 am
By: News On 6

No new trial for convicted killer Wade Lay. That was a Tulsa County District Court judge's ruling Thursday morning.

The News on 6's Heather Lewin was in the courtroom for the judge's decision and Lay's outburst at the result.

Wade Lay had to be removed from the courtroom after getting into a shouting match with the judge and prosecutors, even hurling an obscenity at the judge as he was dragged out.

Thursday's hearing was the final testimony in Lay's request for a new trial. He and son Christopher Lay murdered a bank security guard last year. Chris Lay was sentenced to life in prison; his father got the death penalty.

Attorneys for Wade Lay, who represented himself during the trial, say because one of the jurors recognized a witness and no one told the judge, the first trial should be thrown out. The juror later testified he thought the witness looked familiar, but didn't realize he'd met her before in a local bar, until after the trial was over.

The judge ruled that because both defendants admitted their guilt in court and that the woman recognized by a juror was not testifying about facts of the crime, but simply the defendants' character. Her testimony had no impact on the outcome of Wade Lay's case. Tulsa County prosecutor Doug Drummond: "the idea is that the juror somehow had some kind of preconceived notion that he took back into the deliberating room that made him rule the way that he did. There's not even a scintilla of evidence that shows that in this case and in my mind it's light-years away from any type of juror misconduct or any unfair trial to Wade Lay."

Because this is a death penalty case, Wade Lay still has the ability to file another appeal.