OKLAHOMA CITY — Testimony concludes in the case of an Oklahoma City teen accused of firing into a crowd of people in Bricktown.
The accused gunman, 16-year-old Avery Meyers, faces eight counts of shooting with intent to kill.
Friday a judge ruled there is probable cause to move forward with the case.
The preliminary hearing ended with some controversy after the state refused to put one of its key witnesses on the stand fearing she wouldn’t coöperate.
The judge also has yet to rule on whether the suspect will treated as an adult or a juvenile.
The violent confrontation in Bricktown began over a stolen cell phone.
During multiple days of testimony in juvenile court, several victims described how Meyers opened fire into the crowd of victims.
Yet the key witness, who instigated the confrontation with Meyers, walked out of court earlier this month and refused to show up to court on Thursday.
That forced the judge to issue a bench warrant.
Prosecutors declined to put her on the witness stand Friday, fearing she wouldn’t be cooperative.
“Certainly, in this case, they don’t need her for purposes of a bind over but her testimony will become more necessary at the trial level,” attorney Jacqui Ford said.
Attorney Ford said that witness’ refusal to testify will hurt the prosecution’s case if the case goes before a jury.
“It certainly doesn’t help prosecutors in front of a jury to have to drag witnesses in wearing handcuffs with a sheriff; it will always put her credibility at issue,” Ford said.
Meyers claims he acted in self-defense, although all the victims called to testify in court said no one else had any weapons or fired any shots.
As for a decision on whether to move Meyers out of juvenile court and into the adult system, that issue remains a tricky one that has yet to be decided.
A hearing will be held in early October.
Prosecutors did make one other big change.
They added a lesser charge of assault and battery with a deadly weapon.
That would be easier to prove at trial.