One year later, search continues for missing Oklahoma mom and son. Former Trump Chief-of-Staff ordered to testify in Georgia election interference probe. US sanctions Iran over hijab protest crackdowns.
One year later, search continues for missing OK mom and son
It’s been a year since Glenda “Cookie” Parton, 80, her son Dwayne Selby, 59, and Dwayne’s friend Jack Grimes, 76 vanished from Turley, OK, near Tulsa. Selby and Grimes were last seen on Oct. 25, 2021, on their way to a horse show in Texas. When they never arrived, Parton went searching for them and also vanished. Selby and Grimes’ vehicle and the vehicle belonging to Parton were soon both found abandoned in the Tulsa area.
On Oct. 31, 2021, hunters found human remains in a wooded area. Police later identified them as belonging to Grimes and said that his cause of death was homicide. Grimes’ remains were found only about a mile from his home. Investigators now believe that none of the three ever left the area.
There has since been no sign of either Parton or Grimes, but police believe they also met with foul play. Back in March, the Tulsa County Sheriff’s Office served a search warrant at the home of Jack Grimes in search of clues. Authorities never revealed whether or not they found anything of interest. Investigators also sought information from people in the regional show horse scene. Grimes, Selby and Parton were loved and respected horse breeders and were partners in a business. However, authorities haven’t indicated that the trio’s fate had any connection to the horse world.
Person of interest?
Last week, TCSO spokeswoman Casey Roebuck told reporters that searches around the county, “resulted in some evidence that is pointing us toward a person of interest”. However, investigators aren’t yet ready to name or charge this person. “We are working with the Tulsa County DA’s office to try and build a case, but we’re not there quite yet,” said Roebuck.
“We have reason to believe the same person is most likely responsible for all three of their deaths,” Roebuck said. “It would help us exponentially if we could locate Dwayne and Cookie. But at this point, we haven’t”.
Bizarrely, a 4th person disappeared from Turley, a town of about 2500 people, about a week before Grimes, Selby and Parton. Shannon Miller, 39, was later found deceased as well. However there’s no indication to date that Miller’s disappearance and death has any connection to the others.
Former Trump Chief-of-Staff ordered to testify in Georgia election interference probe
A judge has ordered Mark Meadows to testify before a Fulton County grand jury probing attempts by former President Trump to interfere in the 2020 election. In late 2020, Meadows was Trump’s White House Chief-of-Staff. Meadows was part of an infamous Jan. 2, 2021, phone call to Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger. During that call, Trump called on Raffensperger to “find” the 11,000-odd votes that Trump needed to overturn his loss to Biden in Georgia. Trump also implied that Raffensperger and his attorney might face legal consequences if they refused.
Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis convened a grand jury earlier this year over this call and other attempts by Trump surrogates to pressure Georgia state officials to overturn the election results. The grand jury has already heard from Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani, who is also a target of the probe.
Like Meadows and others, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R- SC) has been fighting subpoenas to testify in Fulton County. Graham also made phone calls to Raffensperger and other Georgia election officials and lawmakers following the election. Raffensperger says Graham pressed him about the legal authority to toss out certain ballots. Graham asserted his calls were simply “fact-finding” and that his status as a US Senator shielded him under the Speech-and-Debate clause. Court after court rejected this argument, until Graham appealed to the Supreme Court. Conservative Justice Clarence Thomas temporarily blocked the subpoena. It’s worth pointing out that Thomas may have his own reasons for wanting to slow the investigation.
US sanctions Iran over hijab protest crackdowns
The US has announced new sanctions on Iranian intelligence officials, prison officials, leaders of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard, and an Iranian firm engaged in online censorship. The new sanctions come 40 days after Mahsa (or Zhina) Amini died in the custody of Iran’s morality police. Amini was arrested for improperly wearing her hijab.
Amini’s death has sparked weeks of protests all over Iran against the country’s theocratic leadership and oppression of women and free speech. While Iran’s leadership has continually played down the significance and size of the protests, they’ve gone to extraordinary lengths to try to suppress them. Human rights groups in the country say over 200 protesters have been killed in the crackdown and over 12,000 arrested. Just today, clashes occurred between police and protesters marking 40 days after Amini’s death. In Islam, family and loved ones observe a special day of remembrance 40 days after a death.
The sanctions come at a difficult moment for US-Iran relations. Since Biden took office, his administration has been attempting to renew the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, from which Trump unilaterally withdrew. Progress in the negotiations has been slow and prospects for a new treaty look increasingly unlikely. At the same time, activists supporting the protesters in Iran have been calling on the US to pause the negotiation. They say that a new treaty and sanctions relief would strengthen the current Iranian regime and undermine the protesters.
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