NATIONAL NEWS

Attorney for Oklahoma man who shot two Tusla officers claims ‘he was in fear for his life’

Apr 18, 2022, 5:21 PM | Updated: Jun 13, 2022, 3:35 pm
FILE PHOTO - (Deseret News)...
FILE PHOTO - (Deseret News)
(Deseret News)

TULSA, Okla. (AP) — An Oklahoma man who shot two Tulsa police officers, killing one and seriously wounding the other, was in fear for his life after the officers beat, kicked, pepper sprayed and shot him with a stun gun after a traffic stop, his attorney told jurors during opening statements Monday.

David Anthony Ware, 34, faces a possible death sentence for killing Sgt. Craig Johnson. He’s also charged with wounding a second officer, Aurash Zarkeshan, following a traffic stop on June 29, 2020, along with drug and other charges.

“The truth is that when David Ware shot Officer Zarkeshan and Sgt. Johnson, he was in fear for his life,” Ware’s attorney Kevin Adams said. “Sgt. Johnson and Officer Zarkeshan beat David Ware, they kicked David Ware, they tased David Ware, they maced David Ware as he pleaded and begged for somebody to help him.

“And when it got to the point that he felt that he was about to lose his life, he shot Officer Zarkashan and he shot Sgt. Craig Johnson.”

Prosecutors say Ware, who is white, escalated the situation following the traffic stop by refusing to obey the commands of officers as they sought to get him out of the vehicle.

“(Zarkeshan) asked him to step out of the car. This is where things start to get ugly,” said Assistant District Attorney Kevin Gray. “The traffic stop started out OK. It went really bad.”

Gray said Zarkeshan pulled Ware over about 3 a.m. after he saw him run a stop sign and then take a wide turn into another lane of traffic. Ware failed to produce a driver’s license or proof of insurance when Zarkeshan asked him to provide those documents.

A nine-man, three-woman jury, along with several alternate jurors, were selected last week.

Co-defendant Matthew Hall, who authorities said drove Ware from the scene after the shooting, is serving a 24-year prison sentence after being convicted on two counts of being an accessory to a felony in the case.

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

National News

Amy Robach and TJ Holmes attend the 2022 ABC Disney Upfront at Basketball City - Pier 36 - South St...
Associated Press

TV anchors T.J. Holmes, Amy Robach leave ABC amid romance

T.J. Holmes and Amy Robach, anchors at the afternoon extension of ABC’s “Good Morning America,” are leaving the network.
15 hours ago
DALLAS, TX - JUNE 07:  A general view of the skyline of downtown Dallas, Texas as the American Airl...
KELSY MITTAUER

Arrest made in sex trafficking of teen girl who disappeared at Mavs game

Nine months after a Texas girl was sex trafficked after disappearing from a Mavericks game, an arrest has been made.
15 hours ago
Lisa Loring...
Toyin Owoseje and Amanda Watts, CNN

Lisa Loring, original Wednesday Addams actress, dead at 64

Lisa Loring, best known as the first actress to play Wednesday Addams in the original "The Addams Family" sitcom, has died at the age of 64.
15 hours ago
FILE - Brevard County Sheriff Wayne Ivey gets ready to spin his popular "Wheel of Fugitive" in July...
Associated Press

Florida sheriff sued for ‘Wheel of Fugitive’ defamation

A man has filed a defamation lawsuit against a Florida sheriff who posts weekly “Wheel of Fugitive” videos on social media.
15 hours ago
In 2022, the San Antonio Zoo received more than 8,000 donations from all 50 states and over 30 diff...
Yenny Sanchez

San Antonio Zoo will let you name a cockroach after an ex and feed it to an animal

The San Antonio Zoo is offering a special Valentine's Day greeting for exes who just won't bug off.
15 hours ago
Dallas is among cities adversely affected by the latest bout of winter weather.
Mandatory Credit:	K...
Marnie Hunter

More than 700 US flights canceled as winter weather moves in

More than 700 US flights have been canceled on Monday as winter weather bears down on a wide swath of the United States.
15 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

Fiber Optical cables connected to an optic ports and Network cables connected to ethernet ports...
Brian Huston, CE and Anthony Perkins, BICSI

Why Every Business Needs a Structured Cabling System

A structured cabling system benefits businesses by giving you faster processing speeds and making your network more efficient and reliable.
notebook with password notes highlighted...
PC Laptops

How to Create Strong Passwords You Can Actually Remember

Learn how you can create strong passwords that are actually easy to remember! In a short time you can create new ones in seconds.
house with for rent sign posted...
Chase Harrington, president and COO of Entrata

Top 5 Reasons You May Want to Consider Apartment Life Over Owning a Home

There are many benefits of renting that can be overshadowed by the allure of buying a home. Here are five reasons why renting might be right for you.
Festive kitchen in Christmas decorations. Christmas dining room....
Lighting Design

6 Holiday Decor Trends to Try in 2022

We've rounded out the top 6 holiday decor trends for 2022 so you can be ahead of the game before you start shopping. 
Happy diverse college or university students are having fun on their graduation day...
BYU MBA at the Marriott School of Business

How to Choose What MBA Program is Right for You: Take this Quiz Before You Apply!

Wondering what MBA program is right for you? Take this quiz before you apply to see if it will help you meet your goals.
Diverse Group of Energetic Professionals Team Meeting in Modern Office: Brainstorming IT Programmer...
Les Olson

Don’t Let a Ransomware Attack Get You Down | Protect Your Workplace Today with Cyber Insurance

Business owners and operators should be on guard to protect their workplace. Cyber insurance can protect you from online attacks.
Attorney for Oklahoma man who shot two Tusla officers claims ‘he was in fear for his life’