TULSA - Three men will have to answer to a count each of conspiracy to commit murder, and police say their intended target was a TPD homicide detective.
Court records confirm that police have arrested Phillip Summers, 25, Michael Lucas, 23, and Demonte Bell, 25 on one count each of conspiracy to commit murder.
Police say their intended victim was Sgt. Mike Huff, the lead homicide investigator of the Tulsa Police Department.
And police go on to say they set up an elaborate sting that led the entire plot to unfold, going so far as to convince the suspects that they had succeeded -- and that Huff was dead.
The complicated story includes another plot involving another set of suspects, jailed for allegedly conspiring to kill District Attorney Tim Harris. ( See related story )
Investigators believe those men, Fred Shields, Michael Lewis, and Alonzo Johnson, wanted Phillip Summers and his gang associates to kill Harris.
When the allegations came to light, all the men had their phone privileges suspended so they couldn't contact their associates outside the jail.
That's when police decided to use the classic Trojan Horse ploy -- in the form of a cell phone, "smuggled" into the jail by means which investigators have not revealed.
Unbeknownst to the prisoners, every call they made from that phone was monitored, and police say they mined a treasure trove of information about the conspiracies to kill Huff and Harris.
Among the developments they allege:
SUMMERS -- THE PRIME SUSPECT
Summers already faces two counts of murder in another case -- in which his previous conviction was thrown out by an appeals court -- and is a suspect in another conspiracy to commit murder for allegedly trying to have Tulsa County District Attorney Tim Harris killed.
Police say they believe he wants revenge for the death of his sister, Terashea Daniels. He apparently blames Huff for her death, although Huff was not the shooter, nor was he the lead investigator in her killing.
Daniels died in 2003 when a police officer shot her after she had robbed and shot a man in front of several witnesses, including police.
The D.A. ruled the shooting justified; reports indicated that Daniels pointed her weapon at officers when ordered to drop it after a short pursuit.
Summers allegedly contacted Lucas about the idea of killing Huff, and Lucas then brought Bell into the plot, police say.
THE VANN MURDERS
Meanwhile, Summers awaits trial on the murders of Shelly and Ples Vann, Jr., gunned down in their home in February of 2003.
Prosecutors theorized the couple was killed because gang members believed their son had killed Phillip Summers' brother.
A Tulsa County jury convicted Summers of the killings in 2008, and a judge imposed the death sentence.
In February, 2010, however, an appellate court held that Summers' murder had been riddled with errors, including false testimony and incorrect rulings.
The chief prosecution witnesses, the justices wrote, "have admittedly lied and broken the law as a matter of course in the past." Furthermore, the same witnesses had "admitted personal motivations to testify falsely in the case."
The court further noted that no forensic evidence whatsoever had directly tied Summers to the killings, and ordered a new trial.
That trial is scheduled to begin in April. You can read about the case in great detail here .
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