In addition to historic flooding, May brought a record-breaking number of homicides to Tulsa.

Ten people were killed in less than 30 days, the most slain in May since the Tulsa World began keeping records in 1989.

Two of the shooting incidents in May claimed multiple victims.

“It was one of those months that you don’t look up,” Homicide Sgt. Brandon Watkins said. “There was something new every day.”

Watkins said his team has worked diligently to make arrests in and solve most of the cases but that two remain open.

Elwood Gant, 36, was found stabbed to death in his east Tulsa apartment May 4.

Detectives interviewed and released a person of interest that night, and Watkins said they’re now exploring a couple of possible assailants.

Anthony Welch, 31, was found dead from a gunshot wound in the parking lot of a midtown Tulsa apartment complex May 28.

No witnesses to the killing have been identified, but Watkins said detectives are following up on leads and interviewing anyone who might have information.

Watkins said plenty of evidence was found at the scene and that he “absolutely believes” the homicide will be solved. “It’s just not a fast turnaround,” he said.

The “senseless” killings haven’t slowed in June, Watkins said. Monday, just the third day of June, brought the month’s first homicide.

“I’d love to see a world where my unit didn’t need to exist,” he said.

May’s homicides are listed below.

May 1

Sidney Leon Ray, 55, died at a hospital after being shot in the head outside his home in the 5300 block of North Johnstown Avenue on May 1.

Witnesses reported overhearing an argument in a garage and then hearing a gunshot before seeing two people jump-start a car and flee. Reginald Romone Sutton, 54, is charged in the killing.

May 4

Elwood Gant, 36, was found stabbed to death in his home at the Stonecrest Apartments, 4020 S. 130th East Ave., on May 4. Detectives are working to identify the assailant.

May 7

Michael Boles, 31, was stabbed to death during a fight outside the Brighton Park Apartments, 4881 S. Darlington Ave., on May 7.

Detectives interviewed and released a person of interest; witnesses supported a claim of self-defense.

May 10

Derrec Shaw, 25, was fatally shot by a Tulsa police officer May 10 after he randomly shot two people near Interstate 44 and Peoria Avenue.

Police say that after the initial shootings, Shaw ran across the highway, pointing his gun and possibly shooting at multiple vehicles. The officer shot him on the highway.

May 20

Marco Celestine, 23, and Joshua Smith, 26, died after a quadruple shooting at the Red Fox Apartments at 16th Street and Memorial Drive on May 20.

Celestine died at the scene, and Smith died at a hospital days later. Another victim remained hospitalized this week, Watkins said. The fourth was treated and released.

Kaleb Young, 20, was arrested and charged with two counts of first-degree murder and two counts of shooting with intent to kill. Young told detectives he decided before he arrived at the complex to shoot anyone who was near his ex-girlfriend.

May 23

Dion Carr, 27, was shot to death in his home in the 4200 block of North Frankfort Avenue on May 23.

Chauncey Thomas, 25, a suspect in the home invasion, received a “critical” gunshot wound to his leg during a struggle with Carr and died at a hospital days later.

An arrest warrant was issued for a second suspect, Justin Harjo, 22. Police say Harjo acted in concert with Thomas, and he’s charged with two counts of first-degree felony murder.

May 28

Anthony Welch, 31, was found dead from a gunshot wound in the parking lot of an apartment complex near 3200 S. Hudson Ave., on May 28. No arrests have been made.

May 29

Antwan Barnes, 42, was fatally shot at the Sierra Pointe Apartments, 1300 S. 107th East Ave., on May 29.

Shaquel Mullins, 25, was arrested and charged with first-degree murder and discharging a weapon into a dwelling. Police say he tried to kick down the door of a woman’s apartment but someone inside shot at him and he returned fire, hitting Barnes, who was also inside.

Barnes was among three or four people inside at the time, and detectives think he was “just in the wrong place at the wrong time.

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Kelsy Schlotthauer


Twitter: @K_Schlott 

Staff Writer

Kelsy graduated with a journalism degree from Oklahoma State University in 2018 and moved to Colorado to cover breaking news before The World called her home in 2019. Follow her on Twitter for real-time reports. Phone: (918) 581-8455

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