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Tuesday, July 16, 2024 | Back issues
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46 Felonies Added in Oklahoma Parade Disaster

BENTONVILLE, Ark. (CN) - Already facing four counts of murder for driving her car into Oklahoma State University's homecoming parade, a young woman faces another 46 counts of felony assault and battery and the first civil lawsuit.

Prosecutors on Wednesday charged Adacia Avery Chambers with 46 counts of assault and battery by means or force likely to produce death. She already had been charged with four counts of second-degree murder and driving under the influence.

Chambers, 25, is in Payne County Jail under $1 million bond, awaiting a psychiatric evaluation.

If convicted, she faces up to 10 years in state prison for each murder count.

Payne County District Attorney Laura Austin Thomas asked the judge to issue a gag order, citing the intense media coverage "generated mostly by defense counsel or defendant's family."

Thomas said that speculation over Chambers' mental state and other information in the case will taint the potential jury pool and could result in a defense request for change of venue.

Chambers' attorney, Tony Coleman in Oklahoma City, did not return a request for comment Friday.

On Thursday, what appears to be the first civil lawsuit against Chambers was filed in Benton County, Ark.

Kevin Witten says he was one of 47 people injured in the Oct. 24 incident. He sued Chambers and his own insurance provider, Shelter Insurance, to "enforce an insurance contract for uninsured or underinsured coverage and for personal injuries."

Witten claims in the 3-page lawsuit that Chambers, while intoxicated, "negligently drove her Hyundai Elantra into an unmanned police motorcycle before careening into the crowd of parade spectators in Stillwater, Oklahoma."

Witten says he has been permanently injured, medical expenses, lost wages, and is "certain to incur medical expenses in the future," as well as more physical pain and mental anguish."

His insurance policy provides underinsured and uninsured motorist benefits of $50,000.

One of the assault charges against Chambers is for Witten's injuries.

Chambers is due back in court Nov. 13.

Witten is represented by Frank Bailey, with Bailey & Oliver, in Rogers, Ark.

Here is a link to Payne County records on the case, which cannot be provided directly because the court saved them as pictures.

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