Wichita Falls man charged with public intoxication, assault in Oklahoma

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UPDATE: James Staley III has already bonded out of jail.

UPDATE: Sept. 30, 2019, 4:35 p.m.

According to the Okmulgee County inmate roster, the charges of public intoxication, leaving the scene of an accident and possession of a firearm while intoxicated have been dropped.

The reason for the dropped charges is unknown at this time.


OKMULGEE (KFDX/KJTL) — A man whose home was connected to a 2018 child death in Wichita Falls has been arrested in Oklahoma for assault and alcohol-related charges.

James Staley III was arrested and booked into the Okmulgee County, Oklahoma jail on Sunday.

According to his arrest affidavit, Oklahoma Highway Patrol were called to a possible injury accident involving a John Deere backhoe on Lincoln Road, just west of Dentoville Road just before 6 a.m. Sunday. There OPH officials reported finding the backhoe in the west ditch and a white male lying in the ditch asleep.

Troopers said there were several beer cans and an open bottle of liquor inside the backhoe. They also discovered a half-empty bottle of Goldschlager liquor, ten to 12 open cars of Bud Light, and a Colt .22 pistol and a Beretta .25 cal in and around the backhoe.

Troopers said the driver, Staley, had a strong odor of alcohol coming from his breath. He was taken to Okmulgee Memorial Hospital.

During the course of the investigation, deputies with the Okmulgee County Sheriff’s Office reported that two mailboxes had been run over and destroyed one mile from the scene. Deputies said the tire tracks matched that of the backhoe and that one residence had video of the backhoe hitting the mailboxes.

Authorities said when Staley awoke in the hospital, he became combative and assaulted a nurse. When three officers from the Okmulgee Police Department arrived, they said Staley became combative once more and was placed into handcuffs.

Staley is charged with public intoxication, transporting an open container, leaving the scene of an accident, possession of a firearm while intoxicated and assault and battery upon emergency medical care providers. 

This arrest comes just days before the one-year anniversary of the death of Jason Wilder McDaniel, 2.

Wilder’s body was found at Staley’s Wichita Falls home on Irving Place on Oct. 11, 2018. On Oct. 22, police conducted a follow-up evidence search at the home.

The cause and manner of Wilder’s death are both listed as undetermined by the Dallas County Medical Examiner’s Office.

Wilder’s parents, Amber Odom and Robert “Bubba” McDaniel, filed a wrongful death lawsuit in April against Staley in Dallas County for more than $1 million.

The lawsuit, filed in 134th Civil District Court, stated based upon information and belief of Staley’s allegedly violent and erratic behavior in Wilder’s presence and his lack of surprise or remorse when Wilder was found lifeless in his room Wilder’s parents believe Staley is solely responsible for the death of Wilder. The lawsuit also stated Staley administered CPR to the boy.

Staley, who has not been named a suspect or person of interest bt law enforcement into the death of Wilder, filed a response to the lawsuit, denying all the allegations.

In May, Staley requested a jury trial, but he also wanted it moved from Dallas County to Wichita County because of procedural requirements that provide for suits to be heard in the county where the events allegedly took place. However, the trial will begin on June 22, 2020, in Dallas County.

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