Charges against a McAlester woman allegedly involved in a Nov. 20 fatal hit-and-run were filed Friday in Pittsburg County District Court.
Antonia “Toni” Jean Beall, 39, was charged with felony first-degree manslaughter and felony leaving the scene of a fatality accident, according to documents filed by District 18 First Assistant District Attorney Adam Scharn.
The information sheet shows Beall was charged with felony first-degree manslaughter after allegedly driving under the influence of an intoxicating substance at the time of the fatal collision.
The woman was arrested Wednesday by members of the United States Marshal Fugitive Task Force and Oklahoma Highway Patrol Troopers for outstanding warrants.
Court records show Beall’s bail was set at $50,000 before the initial appearance was continued by Pittsburg County Special District Judge Mindy Beare. The court minute from the scheduled appearance stated “continued waiting on pending.”
Beall is accused of fatally striking 34-year-old Curtis Wayne Johnson, of Lancaster, Texas, on Nov. 20 just south of McAlester before allegedly leaving the scene and concealing the vehicle. After Johnson was found by an off-duty trooper, the man was transported to the McAlester Regional Health Center, where he succumbed to his injuries, according to the OHP.
Troopers were not able to locate the 2000 white Plymouth Voyager after they spoke with Beall on Nov. 23. The public was then asked for help in locating the van in a social media post on Nov. 24.
OHP Public Information Officer Sarah Stewart confirmed that investigators located the van buried in an “undisclosed location” in Pittsburg County. The News-Capital confirmed the van was recovered from a property inside the McAlester city limits.
Investigators said Friday they know who helped conceal the vehicle, in addition to other accomplices, and that more charges and arrests are anticipated.
According to an affidavit prepared by OHP Trooper Tim Baker, surveillance video from a hotel near where the incident occurred showed a white van strike Johnson as he was walking south on a U.S. Highway 69 service road.
Baker wrote the van appeared to be traveling at a high rate of speed before stopping briefly in the parking lot of the hotel, the affidavit states. Approximately 15 seconds elapsed from the time the van appeared between two surveillance cameras, in which Baker wrote suggested “that the van stopped briefly after striking Johnson,” the affidavit states.
The report states after the photo of the van was released to the public on Nov. 24, information received from the public led to investigators being able to identify the make of the van and Beall as the driver.
Investigators used the information to track down a white 2000 Plymouth Voyager van that was registered to a family member of Beall, according to the affidavit. Investigators learned Beall had been driving the van for more than a year with an expired registration and no insurance, the affidavit states.
Troopers began to actively search for Beall on Nov. 23 and an anonymous tip led investigators to a residence in Savanna where the woman was found hiding in a closet, the report states.
Beall was then interviewed by troopers after waiving her Miranda warning and told them that she left the van at her residence before being dropped off at the residence in Savanna, Baker’s report states.
The trooper wrote in his report that after investigators confronted Beall with the surveillance video from the hotel, the woman ended the interview and requested an attorney. Baker noted in the report that additional surveillance video from a location on Frink Road showed an undamaged van that matched the description of Beall’s van traveling west on the roadway moments before the fatal collision occurred.
The investigation led to the discovery of a photo of the van after the collision occurred, the affidavit states.
A woman told investigators that a man told her that he took the van and disposed it “in an unknown way” after the photo was taken, the report states. Baker noted in the report that the photo showed a van that matched the description of Beall’s with damage to the right side of the windshield, the side which would have struck Johnson.
Troopers then interviewed the man, who told the investigators that he found the van at Beall’s residence “vandalized” with a propane tank thrown through the windshield and denied sending the photo, the affidavit states.
According to the affidavit, as troopers were leaving the residence where they interviewed the man, investigators received a tip that the man tossed a cell phone in a ditch near the residence – which was later found by investigators. The phone was found turned off and when it was turned on, a missed call from an investigator confirmed the phone to belong to the man, the trooper wrote in the report.
The man then told investigators that he was staying at the motel near where the fatal collision occurred and text messages from his phone with Beall confirmed that she was going to meet the man the night of the fatal collision, the affidavit states.
Another individual provided information to investigators that he saw Beall drive the van to her residence “sometime after 7 p.m.” the night of the collision and that she asked him for a ride, the affidavit states. The man alleged Beall was “messed up” drunk and that she had a bottle of whiskey with her when he took her to a hotel in McAlester, the report states.
According to Baker’s report, the man said that he noticed Beall was “nervous” and when he asked her why, she told the man that she had hit a “guy,” the affidavit states.
A supplemental information sheet prepared by the DA’s office showed Beall has previous convictions for drug-related charges, falsely personating another to create liability, and unauthorized use of a vehicle.
The document also shows Beall was convicted in 2007 for felony assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, misdemeanor leaving the scene of accident involving damage, and misdemeanor driving with license suspended.
Court records show Beall was charged after she “without justifiable or excusable cause, assault and batter” a woman with a pickup truck in Canadian in Jan. 2007 and causing damage to the woman’s vehicle with the pickup before leaving the scene.
Beall was sentenced to a five-year suspended sentence for the assault and battery charge and one year in the Pittsburg County Jail for the two misdemeanor charges, documents state.
Records from the Oklahoma Department of Corrections indicate Beall is under the supervision of ODOC’s probation and parole services after being sentenced to a 12-year suspended sentence in 2015 for felony possession of controlled dangerous substance – methamphetamine.
A new initial appearance for Beall was not scheduled at press time Friday.
Contact Derrick James at email@example.com