McALESTER — Charges against a Tulsa man accused of using a drone in an attempt to smuggle contraband into an Oklahoma prison last October were dropped Thursday as prosecutors await analysis of fingerprint evidence.
The charges alleged Marquis Gilkey forced a woman to travel from Tulsa to McAlester to help him use the drone to smuggle the items to an Oklahoma State Penitentiary inmate with Tulsa gang ties.
Pittsburg County prosecutors dropped the charges before Gilkey’s preliminary hearing, in which a judge would determine whether there was sufficient evidence to hold him for trial.
Assistant District Attorney Adam Scharn told the Tulsa World he did not want to proceed with the hearing without the forensic evidence, which could help resolve current discrepancies in the case, and risk the judge granting the defense a demurrer that would prevent prosecutors from refiling.
The pending forensic analysis, submitted to the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation in October, has already been cited for two continuances in the case, prosecutors’ motion to dismiss states.
“With charges this serious, we of course don’t want to dismiss them,” Scharn said. “But we also don’t want to take the risk of not having the right amount of evidence at preliminary hearing.”
Prosecutors plan to refile charges after receiving the results of the forensic analysis, Scharn said.
Gilkey, 30, was charged in November with felony counts of kidnapping, conspiracy, attempting to bring contraband into a penal institution and committing a gang-related offense.
The gang-related offense count pertained to his involvement with Clifton “Chili” Wilson, an inmate at the prison and purported general of the 107 Hoover Crips gang.
On Oct. 26, prison staff found a remote-controlled drone upside down on the prison grounds with a package that had been suspended underneath by fishing line, Oklahoma Department of Corrections officials said at the time.
The package contained two hacksaw blades, a cellphone and cellphone battery, a hands-free device, two packages of cigarettes, two packages of cigars, two tubes of Super Glue, a 5.3-ounce bag of marijuana, a 0.8-ounce bag with methamphetamine and another bag with less than 1 gram of heroin, officials said.
A woman identified in photos on a memory card retrieved from the drone told the DOC Inspector General’s Office that an inmate, later identified as Wilson, told her to purchase the drone, according to a probable cause affidavit.
She said she later met up with another woman and a man named Marquis, identified by authorities as Gilkey, who she said was armed and told her to drive to McAlester, according to the affidavit.
“(The woman) said she had attempted to run away but Marquis had thrown her to the ground and stood on her back while threatening her,” the affidavit states. “(The woman) said Marquis had taken nude photographs … and threatened to post them on the Internet if she ever spoke about what they were doing.”
The three then reportedly spent that weekend driving through residential areas near the prison before deciding to try to send the drone to the prison from a nearby abandoned home, according to the affidavit.
Gilkey, described by authorities as a member of the 107 Hoover Crips, has spent time in prison for multiple Tulsa County robbery convictions.
Records show that Wilson is up for parole in October on a 2000 conviction of robbery by force or fear in Grady County.
Wilson has not been charged in the incident but was named as a co-conspirator on a document detailing the charges against Gilkey.
Gilkey has been out of custody since his bond was reduced to personal recognizance Jan. 22, records show.