March 14, 2014

DA to seek death penalty in Maisano murder case

The Express-Star


The District Attorney's office will officially seek the death penalty for Steven Thompson following his entering of a not guilty plea during his arraignment yesterday.

Thompson stands accused of murdering Norman Deputy Police Chief Jim Maisano's daughter, Sara, and assaulting his former fiance, Katie Garner, in June.

Assistant District Attorney Cortnie Siess said her office filed a bill of particulars and plans to seek the death penalty.

"There [seems to be] overwhelming evidence and we're ready to proceed," Siess said.

At Thompson's Feb. 25 preliminary hearing, Judge Timothy Brauer determined evidence, including testimonies by Garner and Thompson's cousin, James Luke, substantiated probable cause.

Garner's testimony recounted the events of the night leading to Maisano's death.

She said Thompson was enraged and had her and Maisano on their knees in the kitchen. He proceeded to hit Garner in the face with the shotgun repeatedly, she said.

Garner said she passed out after that, but woke up the next morning in the guest bedroom, covered in blood. She said she crawled out of the bedroom,  saw Maisano's legs dangling from the bed, and made her way to the living room where Thompson was sitting on the couch.

She said he looked at her and said "how do you feel about me killing your homegirl."

She said she passed out on the couch after that, but remembers asking the police if Maisano was dead.

"They said yes," Garner said.

Thompson's attorney Mitch Solomon questioned Garner about her and Thompson's abuse of prescription drugs, such as Lortab, and alcohol.  

Solomon alzo questioned Garner about text messages between her and Thompson, in which Thompson said he didn't want her to bring Maisano to the house for fear that Garner's relationship with Maisano would affect theirs.

Luke said Thompson called him the morning of June 27 and told him he had "killed Katie's girlfriend with a shotgun."

"He said he was glad to get ahold of me because he loved me and said I wouldn't be seeing him again because his life was over," Luke said. 

Luke said Thompson told him he had found out Katie had been cheating on him.

The trial date is set for Jan. 26, 2015.