Tahlequah Daily Press

Local News

July 19, 2013

Search continues for person of interest in Maher death

TAHLEQUAH — What started as a manhunt in Tulsa Thursday morning spilled into Friday, with police continuing to seek out a man they want to question in the mysterious death of a Tahlequah professor last May.

Tahlequah Police Chief Nate King said Detectives Elden Graves and Jeff Haney traveled to the Tulsa area, along with the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives on Thursday morning to find 33-year-old Joshua Schneider.

Detectives and the OSBI agents had developed “multiple persons of interest” throughout their work on the case, but each one had had been cleared – except Schneider.

King said detectives want to speak with Schneider to either determine whether he was “just an acquaintance” with Tiffany Maher, or if he might be considered a suspect in her death.

Maher was found dead in her Tahlequah home in late May. Detectives said there were no visible signs of injury, but they believe the suspect in the case attempted to set fire to Maher’s body and her home.

According to Haney and Graves, Schneider has refused to speak with them for at least the past three weeks. He also has multiple addresses and has failed to register as a sex offender, which prompted a judge to issue a warrant for his arrest. Schneider was convicted in the 1990s of second-degree rape in McIntosh County.

Haney said detectives have requested the specifics of that case, and the file is still en route to the local police department.

“It appears [Schneider] has enlisted the help of family and friends in his attempt to avoid us,” Haney said.

Schneider was spotted in the Tulsa area Thursday as Tahlequah detectives and other agencies began looking for him. According to Haney and Graves, Schneider rammed several police cars and other vehicles during about a half-hour-long pursuit. He ran through three roadblocks authorities set up, and eventually ditched police when traffic became heavy and officers feared for the safety of others.

Schneider’s car was found a few hours later in a wooded area near Garnett and Pine. Schneider had left behind his 2-year-old child, police said, and fled on foot with a female acquaintance. Canine units and a police helicopter were launched to assist in the hunt, but Schneider has continued to elude authorities.

According to King, information developed in the investigation into Maher’s death reveals Schneider had “at least some connection to Ms. Maher.”

King said investigators also know Schneider is a member of multiple online dating websites and has used various names.

King has received at least half a dozen photos of Schneider from people who spoke with the fugitive on dating websites.

Haney said Schneider’s family is from the Tulsa and Broken Arrow areas, and detectives have no reason to believe he has strong ties to Tahlequah.

Anyone with information about the location of Schneider is asked to call their nearest law enforcement agency or 911; or to call the OSBI hotline at (800) 522-8017.

“Schneider left behind his child and has refused to speak with our detectives, and this case could play a role in why he’s running so hard,” said King. “We need to find out whether he is a suspect or simply an acquaintance.”

King is asking anyone with information about the Maher investigation to contact OSBI, or the Tahlequah Police Department at (918) 456-8801.

 

Follow courts and crime news on Twitter @JoshNewtonTDP or search for #TahlequahCrime for breaking news updates.

1
Text Only
Local News
  • ths-jazz-2.jpg THS jazz band gets up early to hone performance skills

    It means getting up an hour earlier, and it doesn’t count as a class, but the jazz band at Tahlequah High School enjoys the dedication of a group of enthusiastic students.
    The THS Jazz Band practices every day at 7 a.m., an hour before the start of classes. It numbers 17, and is led by Director Orien Landis.
    “They have to do this before school and they get no class credit, but we have a full band,” Landis said. “They are really excited about this.”

    April 18, 2014 2 Photos

  • Easter-basket-kid.jpg Easter traditions date back centuries

    Some Christians may lament a partial shift of focus, but a Christian holy day - perhaps the most holy of all – is this Sunday, and it will be marked with celebrations all around the world.
    The Christian holiday of Easter celebrates the resurrection of Jesus. For centuries, the observant have fasted, reflected or done penance in the weeks leading to the holiday. But today, many also associate the holiday with the Easter bunny, candy, and kites. In 2013, Americans spent $2.1 billion on Easter candy.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Some oppose minimum wage hike; others decry strong-arming by state

    President Barack Obama and the U.S. Senate recently announced a push to raise the federal minimum wage from $7.25 per hour, to $10.10. On the heels of the announcement, an initiative petition was introduced in Oklahoma City to raise the minimum wage to the suggested $10.10. If it gained 80,000 signatures, it would be put to a vote of the people.
    This legislative session, a bill passed prohibiting municipalities from setting a minimum was or vacation and sick-day requirements. Gov. Mary Fallin signed the bill into law earlier this week.

    April 18, 2014

  • Phone scam takes $500 from couple

    Authorities are warning Cherokee County residents to watch for a costly phone scam that recently targeted a local couple and ended in their loss of $500.
    According to sheriff’s deputies, a couple contacted authorities after losing $500 to the scam. The couple received a phone call from a man who identified himself only as “Mr. Green.” He told the couple they had won $1.5 million through Publisher’s Clearing House, but to collect the money, the couple would have to purchase a $500 money card to cover various fees.

    April 18, 2014

  • Missing local teen found dead

    The body of a missing 17-year-old boy was found in southern Cherokee County on Thursday, sheriff’s investigators said.
    Brikk Pritchett was reported missing earlier this month after disappearing on March 30, a day before his 17th birthday.

    April 18, 2014

  • ts honor flight 1.tif Flight of honor

    World War II veteran Charles Harra flew missions for the Army Air Corps, and if you ask him which flight was his most memorable, he’ll say it was his 35th mission.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Man charged after leading authorities on wild chase

    Prosecutors have formally charged a man who allegedly led authorities on a wild high-speed pursuit across Cherokee County in late March.

    April 17, 2014

  • Sex offender bonds out after failing to register

    A Cherokee County man is out on bond after being arrested last week for failing to register as a sex offender.

    April 17, 2014

  • jn radiator shop.jpg ‘Greenbelt’ progressing

    Crews this week began to demolish an abandoned radiator shop at the corner of South Street and Guinn Avenue.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • ts slut walk.tif SlutWalk shines spotlight on crime

    “Two, four, six, eight, stop the violence, stop the rape; slut, slut, ho, ho, yes means yes and no means no!”
    This was the battle cry across the campus of Northeastern State University, as the student branch of the American Association of University Women held its third annual SlutWalk Wednesday.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

Poll

What to you think of a state Legislature proposal to forbid cities from raising the minimum wage? Choose the closest to your opinion.

The federal government should set the minimum wage across the board.
States should be allowed to raise their minimum wages, but not cities.
Both states and cities should be allowed to raise their minimum wages.
Cities should be allowed to raise their mimum wages, but not states.
There should be no minimum wage at all.
Undecided.
     View Results
Tahlequah Daily Press Twitter
Follow us on twitter
AP Video
Captain of Sunken SKorean Ferry Arrested Raw: Fire Destroys 3 N.J. Beachfront Homes Raw: Pope Presides Over Good Friday Mass Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station Superheroes Descend on Capitol Mall Man Charged in Kansas City Highway Shootings Obama Awards Navy Football Trophy Anti-semitic Leaflets Posted in Eastern Ukraine Raw: Magnitude-7.2 Earthquake Shakes Mexico City Ceremony at MIT Remembers One of Boston's Finest Raw: Students Hurt in Colo. School Bus Crash Raw: Church Tries for Record With Chalk Jesus Raw: Faithful Celebrate Good Friday Worldwide Deadly Avalanche Sweeps Slopes of Mount Everest Police Arrest Suspect in Highway Shootings Drought Concerns May Hurt Lake Tourism Vermont Goat Meat Gives Refugees Taste of Home Calif. Investigators Re-construct Fatal Bus Cras Mayor Rob Ford Launches Re-election Campaign Appellate Court Hears Okla. Gay Marriage Case
Stocks