The Pryor Times

March 6, 2013

Drug suspects not charged

Staff Writer
Cydney Baron

— Two officers involved in a shooting at Days Inn near Pryor in January have returned to work.

Brett Mull of the Mayes County Sheriff’s Office and Dale Tillotson of the Salina Police Department have been cleared by the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation to return to work.

With the two officers back at work, the case will move forward. According to a previous statement by Mayes County Sheriff Mike Reed, formal charges could not be made until the officers returned to work.

At the time of the event, Reed stated that psychologists find it best to let the shock of a shooting wear off before filing formal charges against defendants.

The district attorney and the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation have cleared the men of any criminal charges.

The two officers officers were making a routine traffic check near Days Inn Motel just after 2 a.m. Jan. 28, when they encountered Carl Don Thomas, 26, Pryor, and 41-year-old Robert Rowbotham, Locust Grove.

The officers took the men out of the vehicle and requested a drug K-9 from Chouteau to check the vehicle. Narcotics were found inside.

The men told the officers a potential drug deal was happening in a hotel room. Inside the room, Will Perneau was handcuffed. While officers were distracted, he brought a gun out of his waistband and shot at the officers. Perneau was shot and killed.

When the two appeared before Judge Rebecca Gore, she released them with no charges. She told Rowbotham and Thomas this did not mean they would not be charged in the future.

Neither the sheriff’s office nor the assistant district attorney can confirm if a warrant has been issued for the arrest of either man, but the state anticipates charging the two men with felony drug offenses in the near future.