Unintentional or not, the failure of the Wagoner County District Attorney’s Office to file timely charges against a political contributor of District Attorney Richard Gray has the look of partiality.

Ted E. Boswell Jr. of Okay was arrested July 15 by the Oklahoma Highway Patrol on a charge of driving while intoxicated. Boswell was not charged until Aug. 3, not until Gray was questioned by a Phoenix reporter.

Boswell, according to campaign finances reported to the state Ethics Commission, contributed $5,000 to Gray’s re-election campaign.

Gray said he was not aware Boswell had been arrested until he was told by the Phoenix reporter. He added the Wagoner County office said the file was in a pile a prosecutor “hadn’t got to.” The prosecutor, according to Gray, also said DUIs sometimes are easy to file and “sometimes they’re not.”

Boswell’s case doesn’t appear to be a difficult one to file. The arresting OHP trooper reported Boswell failed a field sobriety test and admitted drinking six beers at a bar before getting into his vehicle. Boswell refused to take a breathalyzer test, the trooper said.

We know many district attorneys across the state are short-handed and handle many cases, and Wagoner County courts are busy.

But three weeks is a long time to wait to file charges in a drunk driving case in which the DA’s office is not waiting on a blood test or further investigations or reports. As an OHP trooper said, DUI charges typically take seven to 10 days to file.

And once the DA’s Office was asked about the arrest, charges were filed the same day.

We don’t want to think that Boswell’s file getting “inside a pile” that no one had got to had anything to do with Boswell’s contribution. But even if the tardy filing is not related to the donation, it points, at the least, to a lack of organization in the office.

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