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Former Tulsa police officer charged with First-Degree Rape

DeAngelo Reyes
Posted at 11:20 AM, Jun 10, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-10 18:08:19-04

TULSA, Okla. — A former Tulsa police officer turned himself in to authorities on Friday after being charged with rape.

DeAngelo Reyes resigned Thursday after five years of service.

According to an affidavit, a woman came forward on June 2 saying she'd been raped by an on-duty Tulsa police officer a few months earlier.

The woman told police that on April 17, while she walked her dog near 51st Street and Yale a police officer drove his patrol car up next to her and made a comment about her appearance and some small talk and left after getting her phone number.

The victim says the officer called her several hours later and showed up at her hotel room in his patrol car and uniform. She says the officer asked if she was a "working girl" and she said she wasn't. He told her he'd looked up her criminal record and said it wouldn't take much to send a person like her back to prison. According to the affidavit, the officer started kissing her and the two had intercourse after she feared the officer would do something to fabricate an arrest.

When reporting the encounter to police, the victim said the officer told her his name was "Eric" but his name "Reyes" was on his vest. She gave investigators the number he called from which belonged to Officer Reyes. His body camera was on when he met the victim but turned it off about 60 seconds into their interaction.

The Tulsa Police Special Victims Unit seized his cell phone on June 5 and Reyes denied the allegations. On June 8, he admitted to the encounter but said the sex was consensual. He resigned the following day. Reyes is charged with First-Degree Rape.

"I'd like to say this is the last time I will stand before you and tell you that an officer has been criminally charged, but it's not going to be," Tulsa Police Chief Wendell Franklin said in a news conference on Friday. "Officers are humans and they're going to do things and make mistakes."

Reyes's attorney released the following statement including his resignation letter:

"Yesterday, June 9, 2022, Tulsa Police Officer Deangelo Reyes submitted his letter of resignation to Tulsa Police Department Chief Wendell Franklin. Officer Reyes has served Tulsa with dignity for the last five years, during some of the most challenging times in our nation’s history. In his letter, Officer Reyes said:

'For the last five years, I have served the Tulsa Police Department with honor. During that time, I have seen first hand the detrimental effects that the actions of just a few officers can have on the reputation and standing of our entire law enforcement community. Until recently, I know that I have done my job well, and have worked hard to diligently serve the people of Tulsa.

The choices that lead me to write this letter were mine and mine alone, and do not reflect the high ideals and character of the department as a whole. They are not in keeping with the oath that I swore as an officer. Though I know that I am innocent of any crime, I am fully aware that my actions nevertheless constitute violations of departmental policy. My choices were selfish, and did not serve the best interest of the department or the city of Tulsa.

I understand that the department has policies in place for a number of reasons, but particularly to protect the citizens of Tulsa and the department itself. It is my sincere hope that my actions will not reflect poorly on the department as a whole.

I have the best interests of the department and our community in my heart, and it is for that reason that I hereby officially submit my resignation as a sworn officer with the Tulsa Police Department. I am innocent of the crime of which I have been accused, but I hope that my resignation from a job I love will lessen any negative attention my choices might draw for the department. I will forever remain grateful for the privilege of working with some of the finest men and women in law enforcement. It takes a special kind of person to serve and protect, and I will continue to keep you and my fellow officers in my thoughts and prayers.'

Officer Reyes offered his resignation to Chief Franklin to spare the department from any further negative attention in the midst of challenging times for law enforcement. Officer Reyes maintains he is innocent of any crime, but will have no further public comment at this time."

Tulsa County District Attorney Steve Kunzweiler is leading the state's investigation of the case and spoke at Friday's news conference.

"Many crimes are crimes of opportunity," Kunzweiler says. "The alleged facts in this case suggest just that. Many people become victims due to their unfortunate circumstances."

The Tulsa Police Department is asking anyone who's had contact with Reyes that they considered to be inappropriate to contact their Special Victims Unit at 918-596-9168 or SpecialVictimsUnit@cityoftulsa.org.


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