Elderly inmate dies after being denied medical treatment

CANADIAN COUNTY, Okla. (KFOR)- Less than 24 hours after a 78-year-old Canadian County jail inmate’s attorney request to transfer him to a medical facility was denied, he was found unresponsive in his cell.

Wade Womack was arrested on Father’s Day for a family shooting relatives say he started.

The altercation began with Womack getting into a verbal dispute with his nephew.

According to William Patrick Wasson’s statement against Womack, Womack struck Wasson’s son to the face with a cane.

“They both immediately stood up, facing each other and yelling. Womack continued to swing his cane,” Wasson said.

Family members attempted to escort Womack to his vehicle, but he refused to leave.

Womack supposedly made a slash motion across his throat and screamed he was going to kill Wasson’s son.

Womack was finally forced into his vehicle and sped off.

Family members didn’t think Womack would come back, “rather go home and calm down.”

About an hour later, Womack is said to have come back to the house and shot off two rounds.

Wasson goes to the side of the house for a better view of what’s going on when suddenly Womack shoots in the direction of their pool where everyone was gathered.

Wasson urged his wife to call 911 and grabbed his three pistols for “protection.”

Wasson, his son, and his son’s friend return the shots, hoping to stop Womack’s truck from advancing.

Wasson goes back outside as Womack revs his engine and runs through their front gate, still shooting at everyone.

One of Womack’s shots grazed Wasson’s ear.

15 minutes later, Womack “shouts he will be back to finish the job.” He then leaves the property in his vehicle.

Oklahoma City police showed up 10 minutes later to secure the property.

Womack returned to the house with more weapons and ammunition in his truck.

Wasson claimed Womack had black paint and blood on his face, Womack saying it was his “Death Mask.”

Womack claimed the face paiting was a part of Choctaw heritage.

Police officers demanded Womack put his hands up, but he refused.

Officers drew their weapons and wrestled him to the ground.

Womack was then restrained and arrested on six counts of assault with a deadly weapon and firing from a vehicle.

Each count having a bail of $25,000.

Womack was transported to OU Health to treat injuries he had sustained from the shooting. He was then booked at Canadian County Jail.

Nearly three weeks later on July 6, Womack appeared for a bond hearing in which his newly appointed criminal defense attorney, Karla Tankut met him for the first time.

Tankut told KFOR Womack looked nothing like his booking photo though.

“Open wounds, bleeding, a big bruise on his head. He was in a wheelchair and he was unresponsive,” said Tankut. “He was in a diaper. He can’t eat by himself. He can’t use the bathroom.”

Womack had to be wheeled in and out of the courtroom with the assistance of a KeyTurn nurse and deputy.

At that point, Tankut said getting his bond approved was the least of her worries.

“I wasn’t even concerned with their bond. I argued for him to immediately be transferred to a medical facility,” added Tankut. “I believed he would be dead very soon if he didn’t get care.”

Tankut said she argued Canadian County Jail did not have “adequate” medical resources.

However, Canadian County Assistant Director Austin Murrey argued against that, supposedly telling Judge Strubhar that Womack was faking his injuries and that he’s dangerous.

Jude Strubhar sided with Murrey and denied the medical request. Womack’s bond was also denied.

Womack was returned to Canadian County Jail where Sheriff West told KFOR guards would check on him every 15 minutes.

At 3:30 p.m. the following day, guards found Womack unresponsive in his cell.

Guards began giving CPR, according to Sheriff West.

An ambulance was then called and Womack was transported to an El Reno hospital. He was later transferred to an OKC hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Sheriff West said no foul play on the jail’s part is suspected at this time.

Tankut doesn’t know how this could have happened and said “we may never know.” She added if he may have gotten medical treatment, he could still be here, but she’ll never know now.

Tankut is no longer on the case.

Womack’s body is now being looked at by the Oklahoma Medical Examiner’s Office.

Womack’s son is expecting to have those results Friday.

News 4 reached out to Murrey’s office. His secretary said he was not “interested” in an interview.

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