Tahlequah Daily Press

Local News

October 4, 2012

Couple plead not guilty to murder

TAHLEQUAH — A Muskogee couple accused in a Tahlequah double murder were arraigned Wednesday morning and pleaded not guilty to charges.

Jessie Renee Leppke-Redford, 46, and her husband Tracy Lee Redford, 43, both stand accused in two counts of first-degree murder and one count of robbery with a dangerous weapon.

Associate District Judge Mark Dobbins set a preliminary hearing for the couple on Nov. 28 at 9 a.m.

The Redfords are accused of bludgeoning to death Jessie Leppke-Redford’s sister, Angela Findlay, and Findlay’s uncle, Jesse Catron, in August at a home on Louellen Street. They have been jailed since Aug. 16 with no bond.

Prosecutors believe the Redfords killed Findlay and Catron between Aug. 12 and Aug. 15. Affidavits filed in the case allege Jessie Leppke-Redford admitted on Aug. 18 that she killed her sister, and that her husband was responsible for Catron’s death.

The Redfords are also charged in separate filings with 11 counts of assault and battery with a deadly weapon and a count of robbery with a dangerous weapon for an alleged attack against Muskogee resident Ernest “Lee” Norfleet. Both pleaded not guilty to those charges in September.

Norfleet has said the Redfords were acquaintances at the time of the assault, and that Jessie Leppke-Redford asked for his help late Aug. 14. When they met at the Cherokee Inn early Aug. 15, Norfleet said Jessie Leppke-Redford went into a bathroom and later came out with her husband. Both were allegedly wielding knives and began to stab Norfleet, but he was eventually able to get into his vehicle and drive himself to a hospital.

Prosecutors allege the two stabbed Norfleet 11 times. A security camera captured the assault, investigators said.

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