Gene Stipe ordered not to associate with McAlester man

Saturday, October 8th 2005, 9:28 pm
By: News On 6

McALESTER, Okla. (AP) _ The U.S. Probation Office is ordering former state Senator Gene Stipe to stop associating with a McAlester man with a federal mail fraud conviction.

Chief US Probation officer for the Eastern District of Oklahoma Kelly Garrett says Stipe and Steve Covington have been told to no longer associate with each other.

Covington is the son of former McAlester Mayor Dale Covington. He currently is on supervised release on a federal conviction in connection with an odemeter rollback scheme.

Garrett says the two previously were allowed to meet because of pre-existing employment arrangements, but didn't elaborate. He says he couldn't discuss the reason for the change.

Stipe currently is under five years probation, part of a federal sentence handed down in January 2004 on charges including perjury and conspiracy to violate the Federal Election Campaign Act.