A veteran claimed he hit a man because he was was called racist names when asking for help.
On June 14, Tahlequah Police Officer Michael Gray responded to an assault and battery report at the American Legion. Rodger Ross told the officer he wanted to file charges on James Norwood for hitting him. Norwood said he was a veteran seeking help at the American Legion. He said Ross called him a racial slur so he struck Ross in the back of the head. Ross said Norwood came into the building and tried selling his camera. Ross said the man was rambling and he could only understand that he was a veteran and from Oklahoma City. Ross told Norwood he couldn’t help him and gave him directions to the Veterans of Foreign Wars. It was then that Norwood purportedly became agitated and accused Ross of using racial epithets toward him. Ross said the man left the property, but came back and attacked him. Another man who was inside the building said he saw Norwood attack Ross from behind. The witness stated he never heard Ross call the man any racial names. Norwood was arrested for assault and battery and taken to jail.
Officer Robbie Bacon was dispatched to the Northeastern State University Education Building on June 14. Dispatch advised NSU Police made contact with two people who were involved in a domestic dispute that occurred off campus. The victim said Kyle Fields threatened to kill her and choked her. She said Fields made her hold his hand as they were walking away from her residence. Fields allegedly said he was going to kill himself as the two got to NSU, and a professor walked outside to help the victim. Bacon arrested Fields for domestic assault and battery by strangulation and found several clear baggies that contained a crystal-like substance. Fields was transported to the Cherokee County Detention Center and booked for the assault, threatening to perform acts of violence, and possession of a controlled dangerous substance.
On June 10, Officer Chase Reed was dispatched to Lowe’s in regard to a complaint of begging. The reporting person stated a man approached her, asking for money. She said the man became aggressive with her and she filed a city complaint. Reed recognized the man as Eric Long due to the clothing description and seeing him an hour prior to the call. Officers weren’t able to find Long, but Reed spotted him walking south of Cherokee Springs Golf Course. Officer Cory Keele responded to the area and found Long in the parking lot of Casey’s General Store. Long became upset when Keele told him he was arrested for the incident at Lowe’s. Long took off running through a field and into a wooded area, where Keele lost sight of him. Additional officers arrived and began searching the area. Dispatch advised an off-duty officer spotted Long walking out of the woods near Willis Road. Officer Thomas Donnell took Long to jail, where he was booked for resisting arrest and begging for money.