OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Oklahoma authorities confirmed this week they are investigating a report of a pistol stolen from the vehicle of an Oklahoma judge who was arrested in Texas last month after officials there say he opened fire on parked vehicles while driving.
The Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation also is investigating a drive-by shooting in February at the ranch of Judge Brian Lovell’s brother-in-law, Garfield County Undersheriff Ryan Fuxa told The Oklahoman newspaper on Wednesday.
Lovell, an associated district judge in Garfield County, was arrested Sept. 11 in Austin, Texas, on a misdemeanor count of reckless driving. A felony count of engaging in deadly conduct with a firearm was forwarded to a grand jury for consideration.
He was released on $10,000 bond and ordered to undergo a mental health evaluation.
A telephone message left Thursday at Lovell’s office wasn’t immediately returned.
Lovell’s brother-in-law, Kenneth Markes, reported someone fired at least five times at his home on Feb. 12, damaging a window, a wall and an oven, according to a Garfield County sheriff’s report. A bullet and five .40-caliber shell casings were recovered.
Two days later, on Feb. 14, Lovell reported a .40 caliber pistol had been stolen from his pickup between Jan. 28 and Feb. 11, according to a sheriff’s report.
Fuxa, the undersheriff, told The Oklahoman his office asked the OSBI for assistance on the two cases after the incidents in Austin were reported.
In the Texas case, officers were called just after 4 p.m. on Sept. 11 by a witness who reported a man firing “approximately five times while driving down the street,” striking at least one of the parked vehicles.
About 90 minutes later, police responded to a call about a crash about 2 miles (3 kilometers) from the shooting scene, where a woman said a man had deliberately collided into the rear of her vehicle twice.
Lovell and his SUV matched the description of the shooter, according to the affidavit.
He told police he believed the woman had cut him off in traffic and although he acknowledged their vehicles had collided, he “did not admit the collisions were intentional,” according to the document.
Lovell told police there were two handguns in his vehicle, but he said “he did not know why he would have shot his gun and could not recall any part of the shooting incident,” according to the affidavit.
Paul Woodward, the presiding administrative judge for the Garfield County district, said Lovell agreed not to preside over any cases until his own case is resolved.
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