Man bound over on manslaughter charge in death of ODOT worker
BY LAURA SUMMERS World Correspondent
Tuesday, July 10, 2012
BARTLESVILLE – A 19-year-old Sperry man was bound over for trial Tuesday on a first-degree manslaughter charge involving the death of a state transportation worker who died while working on U.S. Highway 75.
Special Judge John Gerkin set a July 25 formal arraignment date for Deven Wayne Franklin, who faces charges in a Nov. 30 vehicle accident in which Ira Henderson, 42, was killed. Henderson’s friends and family members have filled the room for each appearance Franklin makes at the Washington County Courthouse.
The preliminary hearing for Franklin began in May, continued in June and ended this week as prosecutors sought to find times when witnesses in the case could appear. Several Oklahoma Highway Patrol troopers had worked the scene of the accident in which Hendersonwas struck by Franklin’s car about 8 a.m. as his Oklahoma Department of Transportation crew prepared to remove raised pavement markers from the highway.
Henderson, who had been wearing a reflective safety vest, died at the scene near Ramona of multiple blunt force trauma.
Franklin was driving a 2003 Pontiac Grand Am that crossed the southbound divider lane on the highway as he was traveling near County Road 3300. Franklin’s vehicle struck Henderson and another vehicle before stopping in the outside lane.
Oklahoma Highway Patrol allegedly found in Franklin’s vehicle a wooden box with marijuana inside and underneath the car was a pipe commonly used for smoking the drug.
The Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation analyzed a blood sample taken from Franklin at the scene of the wreck and reportedly determined drugs were present in his system and would have impaired his ability to safely drive a car.
OHP Trooper Richard Mendez was called in from Craig County to assist with the accident investigation using what is known as a total station device to measure distances electronically. Mendez testified he spent 45 minutes at the accident scene mapping 50 points to create a computerized diagram of the collision.
“We were looking for evidence on the roadway and on the side,” Mendez said.
Franklin, who was arrested in March on charges of manslaughter, possession of a controlled dangerous substance and unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia, remains in Washington County jail with a $250,000 bond.
Deven Wayne Franklin