McAlester News-Capital, McAlester, OK

March 3, 2013

McAlester woman accused of using shock cane speaks out

By Rachel Petersen
Staff Writer

McALESTER — A McAlester woman accused of using an electric shocking cane to assault a man said she carried the device for protection and didn’t intended to hurt anyone with it.

Beverly Ann Martin, 50, was charged Monday 3/1/13  (Feb. 25) in Pittsburg County District Court with felony assault and battery with a dangerous weapon and unlawful possession of a controlled dangerous substance without a prescription. She was also charged with misdemeanor counts of unlawful possession of a controlled dangerous substance without a prescription, public intoxication and unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia.

According to court records, McAlester police officer Jason Crittenden was dispatched to 700 N. Main St. in McAlester on Feb. 24. He was responding to a call about a woman with an electric shocker who was allegedly shocking a man.

“When (Crittenden) arrived a white male later identified as Todd Barker was running outside the building screaming ‘she is shocking me,’” a police affidavit states. “Officer Crittenden went into the building (where) he found Beverly Martin holding the shocking device. Beverly was foaming at the mouth screaming ‘he threw a chair at me so I shocked him with my cane.’”

When speaking with the News-Capital, Martin said, “I did not take the taser to hurt him. I took it to protect myself.”

Martin said she once lived with Barker and has been in a dating relationship with him on and off for the past 12 or 13 years.

“He moved out three or four days before this happened,” Martin said. “He took a cab to my place that day.”

According to the affidavit, Crittenden spoke with a witness to the incident.

“Sandra Hall ... stated that Todd (Barker) came into the office and ask(ed) if he could wait here until a ride picked him up and she stated ‘yes.’ Sandra (Hall) then stated Beverly (Martin) then came into the office yelling at Todd and she had some kind of shocking device and shocked Todd (Barker) with the device,” the affidavit states. “Todd (Barker) then tried to run out of the door and (Martin) tried to shock him again and he grabbed a chair to try and keep her away.”

Martin told the News-Capital she had been drinking that day.

Martin said when she went into the office with the taser cane, “I certainly did not take it down there to hurt him.”

Martin said she had been in previous physical altercations with Barker and took the shock cane to protect herself.

Martin said when she arrived in the office she clicked the shock cane and Barker reacted.

“I clicked the taser and he heard it, zzit’zzit,” Martin said when describing the sound the taser makes when activated.

“He heard it zapping and jumped up,” she said.

Martin said Barker then allegedly threw a chair at her and it hit her in the throat.

“Then I really went to shock him, but I don’t think it got him ‘cause I would imagine it would have knocked him out and it never even knocked him down,” Martin said.

Martin said she purchased the shock cane at a garage sale in McAlester last summer and had never used it before.

According to the police affidavit, police took the “shock cane” for evidence and arrested Martin.

McAlester Lt. Kevin Hearod said the weapon Martin was allegedly using on Barker was a taser cane. “It’s a walking cane that will shock you,” Hearod said.

Martin was released from the Pittsburg County jail on Tuesday after posting a $15,000 bond and was due back in court Thursday. If convicted, she is facing up to 10 years imprisonment for each of the felony counts and up to a year for the misdemeanor counts.

She said she is now concerned she will lose her job over this incident.

“A job I’ve had for more than a year now,” Martin said.

Contact Rachel Petersen at

Contact Rachel Petersen at

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