Grand Jury Indicts Restaurant Owner, Clears DA Of Allegations Of Campaign Violations
OKLAHOMA CITY - The owner of an upscale Oklahoma City restaurant is indicted for lying to a Grand jury during an investigation into Oklahoma County DA David Prater.
Prater has been cleared of all wrongdoing. Now one of the men who made the allegations could go to prison.
Wade Starr, part owner of Cafe Nova and Deep Fork Grill, is now facing three counts of perjury after a grand jury found he signed a false affidavit and lied to jurors during their investigation.
The grand jury investigation centered around a victory party for Prater held at Cafe Nova on November 20, 2006. Jurors were investigating allegations that attorney L.B. Moon paid for the party in an illegal, excessive campaign contribution and in exchange Prater showed Moon favoritism in a criminal case.
I guess I'm surprised to the extent that some people will go if they want to harm their enemy," Prater told News 9 on Wednesday.
The grand jury report says three attorneys, which Prater identifies as Irven Box, Joe Reynolds, and Michael Johnson, worked together to write the false affidavit that said Moon paid for the party and then presented the affidavit to Starr for his signature.
"It was personal, it was very personal," said Prater.
Prater says he believes the attorneys made the allegations after three high profile cases: Jerome Ersland, and Tammy Bass-LeSure and Terrell/ Leftwich didn't go their way.
None of the attorneys have been charged with any crimes, but Prater is hoping the bar association takes action.
"These are all lawyers that falsified this information and then testified unusually before the multi-county grand jury," said Prater.
Box told News 9, he can't talk about the grand jury findings for six months, but his position had nothing to do with the Ersland case.
Reynolds has since passed away, and Johnson told us the grand jury report shows he cooperated with the investigation in a way that helped Prater.
Starr meanwhile pleaded not guilty to the charges. Neither he nor his attorney had any comment as they left the courtroom.