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Oklahoma Co-Chairs:


Karen Lynch, Bartlesville

Son, Timothy Michael Lynch, 19, beaten and then fatally shot five times by his father, who was a 2nd degree Black Belt,  March 25, 1996. His father claimed that he "over-reacted" and that it was "self-defense."  Suspect was arrested and posted bail and when he finally was sent to jail in August 1999 for violating a restraining order, he again posted bail!  A first degree murder verdict was returned November 30, 2000. Sentenced January 2001 to 35 years to life.



Maridel Ripley, Claremore

Her daughter, Melanie Ripley Strange, 24, her two sons, Andrew, 4, and Christopher, 2, were murdered by Melanie’s husband, Martin Strange, the boys’ father, July 5, 1989.  Melanie’s throat was slit, Andrew was suffocated and  Christopher was strangled with a sash from his little bathrobe.  The killer was arrested two days later and the murder weapon was found in the car at the time of his arrest.  He confessed to murdering all three but pled guilty by reason of mental disease or defect.   Even though he was found guilty at his first trial  in April 1993 and the jury recommended the death penalty on all three counts - before the jury deliberated, the judge granted him a new trial! August 31, 1993: after the jury selection but before the trial began, the defendant decided to plead guilty of three counts of murder in the first degree in exchange for three life without the possibility of parole.

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