Jury Selected In Trial Against Suspect In Norman Hostage Situation


Tuesday, June 14th 2016, 12:38 pm
By: News 9


A jury of 11 women and three men, including one man and one woman chosen to be the alternates, will hear testimony in the trial of a homeless Army veteran from California accused of taking hostages at gunpoint at a Norman business two years ago.

This happened at the Nexstep building off Interstate 35. 

No one was harmed in the incident, but if convicted, Devin Rogers could face the rest of his life in prison.

Rogers has been watching the court proceedings very intently and seems very engaged in the process. Deputies have been very good about keeping him sequestered from the jury pool by slipping him in and out through the back and away from news cameras.

Rogers' attorney did speak with News 9 Tuesday about his defense.

"Well, we just want him to get a fair shake," said attorney David Smith, who is one of two attorneys representing Rogers pro bono during his criminal trial at the Cleveland County courthouse.

Rogers faces a range of 10 years to life in prison for the hostage situation that was all caught on surveillance cameras both outside and inside the Nexstep building on Nov. 10, 2014.

"You can call me a terrorist, fine. You can call me a bad man, fine. You can call me an evil wrongdoer, fine. I really don't care," Rogers said during an exclusive jailhouse interview with News 9's Justin Dougherty back in February.

Rogers spoke about what motivated him to take hostages at gunpoint that day and to hold officers at bay for nearly four hours before finally surrendering.

"I am self destructing and I am now in a phase of self punishment," Rogers said during his jailhouse interview. 

Rogers said the scars on his neck are from one of his past suicide attempts, signs of a broken man who felt he had nothing to live for, and who upon surrendering, asked officers and the district attorney to let him go straight to prison for the next 10 years of his life.

Rogers' defense team is not planning on calling any of his friends or family to take the stand since they live out of state. But it will be up to Rogers if he himself will take the stand in his defense.

"All I can say is we have advice that we give him and hopefully he'll take it," Smith said. "But ultimately it's going to be his decision."

And all the hostages from that day are expected to testify in this case as well as the Norman police hostage negotiator and other officers who responded to the standoff.

Opening statements will begin Wednesday morning and the trial is expected to last a week.

Rogers faces six felony counts including four gun-related charges and two for kidnapping\extortion.