MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

November 7, 2013

Third Duncan teen charged in Australian’s slaying

Suspect had earlier been charged with lesser offense


Associated Press

— DUNCAN (AP) — A third teenager was charged with murder Wednesday in the death of an Australian baseball player who was shot while jogging in Duncan, a random act that authorities say the teen and his two friends blamed on being “bored.”

Prosecutors filed the upgraded charge against 17-year-old Michael Dewayne Jones, who initially faced lesser charges in the death of Christopher Lane. The 22-year-old Melbourne native, who was studying and playing baseball at East Central University in Ada, was on a training run while visiting his girlfriend’s parents in Duncan when he was killed on Aug. 16.

Jones was ordered held without bond during a brief court hearing Wednesday. Prosecutor Jason Hicks said Jones may have been involved in two other shooting incidents at the time of the Lane’s death, though he didn’t provide details. Hicks declined to answer questions about those alleged incidents after the hearing, citing the gag order in the case.

Jones hasn’t been assigned an attorney to handle the new first-degree murder charge, which will be tried in adult court.

Jones initially faced charges of being an accessory after the fact and operating a motor vehicle while a gun was discharged. Those charges were dropped. His preliminary hearing was scheduled for Nov. 20.

The two other suspects — Chancey Allen Luna and James Francis Edwards Jr., both 16 — had already been charged as adults with first-degree murder.

Lane moved to Oklahoma to play baseball and was preparing for his senior year at East Central University with hopes of entering the real estate business. He was shot in the back while visiting his girlfriend’s parents in Duncan, about 80 miles west of Ada.