S6E5: Conviction: Murder, Shooting with the Intent to Kill, Use of a Vehicle to Facilitate the Discharge of a Weapon
De’Marchoe Carpenter and Malcolm Scott were 17 years old when Tulsa police arrested them in connection to a gang-related shooting that killed 19-year-old Karen Summers, the mother of a 4-month-old baby, outside a house party in 1994. Neither teen was found with the murder weapon or the getaway car and no DNA linked either of them to the crime scene. Days after the murder occurred, a Tulsa homicide supervisor visited Michael Lee Wilson, a known member of the Bloods, who had the murder weapon, the car, and the motive. Prosecutors offered Wilson a plea deal in exchange for testifying against De’Marchoe Carpenter and Malcolm Scott, and Wilson was released on $5,000 bond. While he was free, he brutally butchered Richard Yost, a night clerk at a Tulsa convenience store in February 1995—that crime was so heinous that Wilson and his co-defendant Billy Alverson both received the death penalty. Two eyewitnesses who placed De’Marchoe Carpenter and Malcolm Scott at the scene, and who provided inconsistent statements to investigators, later recanted and claimed detectives had coerced their testimony by threatening them with charges. After their three-day trial, De’Marchoe and Malcolm were found guilty and sentenced to life in prison on the murder conviction, plus 170 years for two counts of shooting with intent to kill, and one count of using a vehicle to facilitate the discharge of a weapon. Days before Wilson was set to die by lethal injection in 2011, he provided a videotaped confession to the Oklahoma Innocence Project. In the footage, he claimed that he was the one who killed Summers, and that he’d allowed cops to suspect De’Marchoe and Malcolm. Almost 22 years later, on May 9, 2016, a judge finally vacated their convictions and declared them factually innocent.
Wrongful Conviction with Jason Flom is a production of Lava For Good™ Podcasts in association with Signal Co. No1 and PRX.