On October 16, 2015, 29-year-old Danielle McWethy shot and killed her boyfriend.
When the police arrived on scene, McWether admitted the shooting, claiming it was in self-defense and to protect her two minor children home at the time. She told authorities that she and Oscar Darnell James Foreman, 33, were living together as boyfriend and girlfriend at the home in Francis, Oklahoma.
An argument erupted between her and Foreman about McWethy possibly being pregnant. According to McWethy, Foreman threatened to cut the baby out of her womb and as he walked to the kitchen to get a knife, he kicked McWethy’s 9-year-old in the head and pushed her 11-year-old against a wall. She said Foreman then grabbed a large knife.
McWethy reacted by shooting him in the torso.
McWethy told investigators that Foreman exited the home with the knife, but then tried to force his way back into the home. So she shot him again. Foreman stumbled back out and collapsed on the front lawn. Neighbors ran over and tried to help Foreman while emergency personnel were on the way. He was taken by Mercy EMS to Mercy Hospital Ada, but was pronounced dead on arrival.
No charges were filed against McWethy at that time, but the investigation continued.
Fast forward eight months, to June 2016.
After receiving all reports from the Oklahoma State Medical Examiner’s Office and the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation, Pontotoc County Sheriff John Christian said there were two issues with McWethy’s self-defense claims that were inconsistent with the evidence, so they brought her in to the Pontotoc County sheriff’s office on June 8, 2016, for another interview.
“We already knew her story was inconsistent with the evidence, and her children’s statements,” Christian said. We “let her tell her story again and still had some inconsistencies even though some of the things had changed in her story,” he added.
Christian said the inconsistencies lied with where McWethy said she was standing when she fired two shots at Foreman.
“We knew from the evidence that we collected at the scene that that was not possible,” Christian said.
And where she told investigators she got the gun to shoot him, first telling them she had gotten the gun from her house when Christian said the evidence indicated she had gotten it out of her car.
Christian said once they had the ballistic report from the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation as well as the Medical Examiner’s report along with her inconsistent statements, they had enough evidence to make an arrest.
McWethy was arrested for first degree murder immediately after the interview.
Once again, we at U.S. Law Shield want to stress the importance of contacting your attorney following an incident.
At the time of a shooting, your perception of the event and recollection of precise circumstances will most likely be impaired by the stress, adrenalin rush, and shock your body is undergoing. Even many law enforcement agencies will allow an officer involved in a shooting a day or so to collect himself before giving a statement to investigators.
In this particular situation, we do not know whether McWethy’s statements to authorities the night of the shooting were an intentional attempt to mislead the investigators or simply a confused woman’s attempt at recall of a stressful situation.
Had she not given a statement to the authorities that evening, would the Sheriff and prosecutors felt compelled to charge her with murder because they felt she “lied” about what happened? We do not know.
What we do know is that you have the right to remain silent and not answer any questions without the presence of your attorney. Exercise that right.
In the words of the comedian Ron White “While I had the right to remain silent, I didn’t have the ability.”
Don’t let that happen to you.
As a member of U.S. Law Shield, you have 24/7 access to an attorney who will advise you and perhaps keep you from saying something you believed to be truthful but might be inconsistent with the evidence that will wind up landing you in hot water.