Tahlequah Daily Press

Local News

March 13, 2014

Convicted murderer up for parole

OKLAHOMA CITY — A Welling man convicted of second-degree murder in 2002 is set to appear before the state’s pardon and parole board this week for the second phase of a parole hearing.

Matthew L. Williams was 27 when he allegedly murdered his common-law wife, Kelly Deckard, about three miles south of U.S. Highway 62 on Welling Road in July 2001. Williams was accused of shooting Deckard in the head with a shotgun.

Williams was initially held for first-degree murder, but in 2002 he pleaded no contest to a reduced charge of second-degree murder. He was transferred from the county jail to a state prison in October 2002.

Williams was sentenced to 15 years in prison with an additional 10 years suspended, and has a projected release date of July 19, 2016. He is required to serve 85 percent of the sentence.

If board members deny Williams parole, the next consideration for early release will be July 1, 2015, according to state records. Williams is in Stage 2 of a two-stage hearing process, according to the state board. During this phase, others can protest or speak on Williams’ behalf.

According to court records, Williams’ suspended sentence runs through October 2027.

Also on the pardon and parole agenda are Danny J. Hodge Jr., who was convicted of rape in 2006; and Jeremy L. Moore, convicted in 2010 of possessing a firearm after a previous conviction or during probation.

Court documents show Hodge, now 27, was charged with two separate rape cases, and pleaded guilty to first- and second-degree rape in May 2006, when he was 19. Documents alleged one victim was 13 years old, and the second was under age 16. Hodge was initially given an eight-year sentence, and just months later the balance was suspended after a judicial review.

In 2007, Hodge’s suspended sentence was revoked and he was sent to state prison, according to court records. His projected release date is July 9, 2015. If denied parole this week, his next appearance before the state board could be March 2015.

Moore, now 36, was originally charged with shooting with intent to kill, but later received the reduced count in exchange for a guilty plea. He was sentenced to 10 years in state prison, and has a projected release date of Sept. 16, 2018.

Moore is also serving time for cases out of Muskogee and Osage counties.

According to the state, Moore will not personally appear before the pardon and parole board, but is on the agenda for a “Serious Incident Report” – a docket for offenders who have received misconduct reports while jailed within the past year.

According to state records, the pardon and parole board last month denied parole to Cherokee County residents Claud R. Redden, who is serving a life sentence for first-degree murder; Roger L. Porter, who is serving a life sentence for second-degree murder; and Christopher E. Koch, who is serving life for first-degree murder.

Porter was charged in the October 1983 death of Loretta “Tiny” Medlock, 53. Investigators said Porter had been doing carpentry work next door to Medlock’s home when he broke into her home, raped her and cut her throat. Porter was convicted, but the conviction was reversed. He then pleaded guilty in 1992 to avoid a retrial. He was sentenced to 75 years for second-degree murder, 10 years for first-degree rape, 15 years for first-degree rape and five years for first-degree burglary. He has been convicted in Atoka and Osage counties since being sent to prison.

Claud R. Redden, 57, began serving a life sentence in March 1999 for the first-degree murder of his cousin, Charles Lee Pack. The victim, 27, was killed by a gunshot wound to the head outside his home in Barber. Pack’s wife told police she glanced out the window and saw her husband lying in the yard, and when she looked out another window, she saw Redden driving away. Redden, of Welling, was picked up at his home two miles south of his cousin’s residence.

Koch was convicted of fatally shooting Guy Pierce Baber in October 1981 near the Illinois River. Records show the shooting actually occurred in April that year. Koch was 17 at the time.

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Do you think "blue laws" related to Sunday alcohol sales in Oklahoma should be relaxed? Choose the option that most closely reflects your opinion.

Alcoholic drinks should be sold Sundays in restaurants and bars, and liquor stores should be open.
Alcoholic drinks should be sold Sundays in restaurants and bars only; liquor stores should stay closed.
Liquor stores should be open Sundays, but drinks should not be served anywhere on Sundays.
The law should remain as it is now; liquor stores should be closed, and drinks should be served on Sundays according to county option.
No alcohol should be sold or served publicly on Sundays.
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