• Tulsa County District Attorney considers death penalty option in trial over Courtney Palmer's death

    By: Ashli Lincoln


    TULSA, Okla. - Quick facts:

    • Four people were accused in the death of Courtney Palmer.
    • A judge ruled that they will go to trial.
    • The prosecution is considering the death penalty.
    • A fourth person's name was taken off the case


    A judge ruled Tuesday that both sides can begin preparing their case in the trial against Michaela Riddle, Gerald Lowe and Charletha Mack, who are accused in the death of Courtney Palmer.

    Palmer's remains were found in Muskogee in December 2016 after prosecutors say four people tortured him for hours in a north Tulsa home.

    A judge ruled there’s enough evidence to take this case to trial, and prosecutors say they’ve brought in a death penalty review team to work on this case. 

    District Attorney Steven Kunzweiler says they haven’t determined if they’ll seek the death penalty in this case, but they are making sure the case is buttoned up if it gets to that point. 

    Defense attorneys for Riddle and Lowe objected the judge’s ruling to take the case to trial. 

    Lowe’s attorney says the medical examiner’s report was too vague when determining the DNA results and ruling the remains found were Palmer’s, and Riddle’s attorney says that, because the remains were found in Muskogee, it brings up a jurisdictional issue. 

    The district attorney’s office says that, since majority of the crime was committed in Tulsa County, they have the lead jurisdiction over this case.

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