CUSHING, Okla. (KFOR) – Officials say murder charges have been dismissed against two people accused of causing a Cushing man’s death.
In February, investigators say Patrick McGuire’s body was pulled from his burning trailer in Cushing. Detectives were soon able to determine that McGuire had been killed before his trailer was set on fire.
“How could you do something so evil?” Joan Evertts, McGuire’s friend, told KFOR.
A neighbor’s surveillance system captured McGuire’s final moments.
Cameras captured multiple people circling the camper before someone sparked the blaze and disappeared through the back of the house. A short time later, the trailer exploded.
Minutes later, a man who was on his way to work saw the fireball and hit the brakes. He ran into the flames and dragged McGuire’s burning body across the street while on the phone with 911.
A short time later, OSBI agents arrested 29-year-old Bridgett Barton and 23-year-old Troy Wayne (TJ) Shadowen in connection to McGuire’s murder.
Shadowen was facing charges of first-degree murder, first-degree arson, and unauthorized use of a vehicle. Barton was charged with one count of first-degree burglary.
On Wednesday, officials with the Payne and Logan Counties District Attorney’s Office confirmed to KFOR that those charges have been dismissed.
Authorities with the district attorney’s office say a key witness in the investigation has given at least three inconsistent statements, which is hindering the case from moving forward.
“Attorneys, particularly prosecutors, are bound by a professional code of conduct and ethics rules. We cannot put a witness on the stand that we know is not telling the truth or one in which we can’t determine which statement is the truth,” an email from District Attorney Laura Thomas read.
Officials say since it is before the preliminary hearing, they will be able to re-file a murder charge if independent evidence is found.