The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

Local and State News

July 3, 2014

Childs found not guilty by county jury

ENID, Okla. — After nearly four hours of deliberation, a Garfield County jury returned six not guilty verdicts for an Enid strip club owner on trial for assault with a dangerous weapon.

Rick Andrew Childs, 46, had tears in his eyes while hugging his wife in the courtroom after the verdict was read.

Childs was facing up to 10 years imprisonment on each of the six counts accusing him of shooting at police last year.

The eight-man, four-woman jury began their deliberations at 1:42 p.m. following the closing arguments of counsel. The verdict was returned at 5:15 p.m.

Jurors sent one question down to District Judge Paul Woodward during their deliberations. The note asked for a better definition of intent. Woodward told the jury to look at a specific section of the jury instructions.

He was accused of shooting a firearm at Enid Police Department Sgt. Nick John and officers Donald Sanders, Robert Fleer, Jonathan Sullens, Kyle Pierce and Sean Dyer.

Assistant District Attorney Irene Asai asked jurors during her closing argument to look at the big picture of the case.

“When you begin to put that evidence together and put it in place, you begin to build a picture of what happened the early morning of July 7, 2013,” she said.

Asai referred to Childs’ testimony Thursday morning, during which his most common response to questions about the incident was, "I don’t remember."

“The only explanation he brings to you ladies and gentlemen is I just don’t remember,” she said.

Childs’ attorney David Henneke told the jury Asai wanted them to convict his client on six counts of assault with a dangerous weapon with fewer than six shots being fired.

“She wants you to convict him on six counts of assault with a dangerous weapon with five bullets, no, only three,” he said.

Henneke told jurors every person is entitled to have his or her rights defended.

“I submit to you Mr. Childs is innocent of all six counts,” Henneke said.

He said it might not be popular, but he asked jurors to acquit Childs on each of the six counts.

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