Opening Statements Begin In Norman Hostage Trial

Wednesday, June 15th 2016, 12:37 pm
By: News 9

Opening statements began on Wednesday in the trial against Devin Rogers, the man accused of taking hostages at the Nextep building in Norman two years ago.

“It was a traumatic experience. It's a good use of money to keep him behind bars. That, was I felt, a military tactical operation that he had done in taking that building,” said Joe Steadman, Rogers first hostage.

For the first time since that day, Steadman came face to face with Devin Rogers, the man who surveillance cameras captured taking him hostage by pointing a gun to his neck and marching him into the Nextep building where he worked.

“Being captured, that was the worst of it. I've had a few friends approach me from behind and I still to this day can't have people walk behind me or cross across me. I'm very aware of my surroundings and what's going on,” said Steadman.

Steadman testified how Rogers forced him to the upper floors, and shot out the glass door to a second floor law firm, and how he was able to break free and hide inside his office with a coworker while he called 911.

Steadman told the jury how he stayed on the line for nearly two hours until SWAT team members were able to rescue him and the hostages, and take Rogers into custody.

At one point, Steadman made eye contact with Rogers in the courtroom, but it did not stop him from telling the jury everything he remembered.

“I felt the same emotions describing it, but I didn't feel fearful with him in the room. There's enough security in the room that I wasn't fearful there was any danger,” said Steadman.

Several other witnesses also took the stand Thursday.

Rogers asked to serve the next ten years of his life in prison when he surrendered to police. But Steadman said he's glad this case has gone to trial, and that Rogers is getting his day in court.

“When you do the crime, you don't really get to dictate what your sentence is. So, it will really be up to the jury he might get ten, he might get more,” said Steadman.

Steadman said he is just glad he and everyone else made it out alive, and that his story should serve as an example to everyone to never give up hope and to always be vigilant and aware.

News 9’s Adrianna Iwasinski will have more from the trial tonight at 6 p.m.