Oklahoma Headlines – 2012: Year in Review, FEBRUARY

Controversial SkyDance Bridge project almost complete.  Photo by Doug Hoke, Daily Oklahoman.

Continuing our review of the Oklahoma headlines for 2012, we now move to Febraury.  Here’s a quick snapshot of the news during a very busy, leap-year length month!

(Photo: Controversial SkyDance Bridge project almost complete. Photo by Doug Hoke, Daily Oklahoman.)

  • Blackwell residents received $118 million in damages related to a 1974 zinc smelter operation contamination.
  • Debate about federal birth control mandates heat up and Oklahoma Catholic leaders get involved.
  • Issues related to the Chickasaw and Choctaw nation lawsuit against the State of Oklahoma influence action from Governor Fallin to request mediation, and to drop the lawsuit.  The tribes’ response a few days later was to refuse dropping the action.
  • OKDHS named an interim chief, but then had to withdraw the placement because of “conflict of interest” concerns.
  • A narcotics dispensing law gets passed which required documentation for prescribing controlled medications.
  • The National Teacher Certification bonus was threatened with being abandoned due to lack of funds.
  • Emily Matheson and Fabio Brown were arrested for allegedly paying $250 to have Jessica Lynn Brown murdered.
  • Rick Santorum visited Oklahoma City to campaign for the Republican presidential spot on the 2012 ticket.
  • Jimmy Don Smith was sentenced to ten years in prison (in a plea deal) for the beating and resulting paralysis of police officer Chad Peery.
  • Oklahoma City Public Schools implement their first Daddy-Daughter dance to involved fathers of their students to a greater degree.
  • The state of Oklahoma paid $300K to settle a lawsuit filed by a mother who “hid her children after DHS workers rejected her concerns the girl had been molested.”  The mother spent time in jail rather than give up the whereabouts of her daughter.
  • Anthony Shadid, Pulitzer Prize winning author, dies at age 43 on assignment in Syria.
  • Announcements are made about the play, “August: Osage County” being made into a film.  Meryl Streep and Julia Roberts are to star in the project, and it will be shot on location in Oklahoma.
  • The Oklahoma City Thunder continues a strong winning record on their home course.
  • The I-40 Crosstown project continue to open up new sections of the improvements, with the Sky Bridge project garnering praise and criticism.
  • Ron Paul’s stop at the Oklahoma State Capitol drew a large crowd.
  • Scott Brooks was named to coach the Western Conference in the All-Star game.  His team won the game, with Kevin Durant leading the scoring.
  • A trial examining charges against State Senator Mike Morgan re: political corruption gets much paper and TV time.

Tomorrow, we’ll lead you through the mighty month of March, 2012!