July 3, 2013

Conflicting reports leave questions in assault arrest

The Express-Star

CHICKASHA — A Chickasha man was arrested for assault and battery with a dangerous weapon at the Ranch House Motel on July 2.

Police collected a sawed-off shotgun from the scene, which they claim was used in the crime.

The report states multiple officers responded to the scene following the initial responder, Officer Matthew Schoolfield.

Schoolfield then assisted Lt. G.G. Music with making contact with the suspect, Daniel Lawson.

Upon arrival, Schoolfield made contact with three subjects.

Police Chief Eddie Adamson said witnesses at the scene identified Lawson as the suspect who pointed the shotgun at John Hunter Jr. and fired the weapon at the motel, though this is not included in the report.

Details in the affidavit state Hunter Jr., who Lawson said had been in an altercation with his son, knew nothing about a gun and nothing about what was going on.

With the available evidence, officers found probable cause to charge Lawson with assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, as well as possession of a sawed-off shotgun.

Lawson was sweating, pacing and speaking loudly when police arrived.

He told police some man was trying to pick a fight with his son and he said he was trying to defend his son. He denied having known anything about a gun.

After this initial questioning, according to the report, Officer Clayton Hobbs placed Lawson under arrest and Mirandized him.

Lawson acknowledged to officers that he understood his rights and then admitted that a man approached him earlier and asked him to watch his shotgun while he went somewhere.

Lawson said he did, and the report alleges when the altercation began with his son and Hunter, that Lawson pulled out the shotgun in an attempt to protect his son.

The report states no further detail on what was done by Lawson with the shotgun, but states Lawson hid it at the west end of the motel where it was later recovered.