News Minute: Here is the latest Oklahoma news from The Associated Press at 8:40 a.m. CST
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - The Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals has upheld the second-degree murder conviction of an Oklahoma City teenager in a fatal New Year's party shooting. The court on Thursday rejected appeals by 22-year-old Kaylin Mixon, who was sentenced to 30 years in prison for the Jan. 1, 2016, shooting death of 17-year-old Rashya Long. Mixon argued that the trial court failed to individually poll jurors after his conviction and that autopsy photos of Long should not have been introduced as evidence.
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - The incoming Republican leader of the Oklahoma Senate wants to create a new state agency to evaluate spending and performance of all other state agencies. New Senate President Pro Tempore Greg Treat announced Thursday he's filed a bill to create the Legislative Office of Fiscal Transparency. Treat said he envisions the new agency having a staff of six to eight members who would have access to agency data and budgets and would conduct performance evaluations of agencies or specific divisions.
TULSA, Okla. (AP) - Bass Pro Shops has pulled a used rifle commemorating the Cherokee Trail of Tears from one of its Arkansas store's shelves and apologized to the tribe after a photo of the gun led to calls to boycott the outdoor gear chain. Company official Jack Wlezien says the 1978 Winchester rifle commemorating the tragic forced relocation of the Cherokee Nation was acquired from a trade-in and isn't part of the store's standard stock. The tribe's secretary of state applauded the decision to pull the rifle.
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - Conservation groups are expressing disappointment with an agreement between Oklahoma and Arkansas to study ways to improve water quality in the Illinois River watershed. The Sierra Club's Oklahoma chapter, the group Save the Illinois River and the Conservation Coalition of Oklahoma say the agreement fails to control pollution and merely calls for another study. Oklahoma Secretary of Energy and Environment Michael Teague says the agreement is intended to implement previous improvement plans.
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