Shelby to go back to work for TPD but not in ‘patrol capacity,’ chief says; jury letter explains verdict

'This letter attempts to capture the thoughts of the jury as a whole as accurately as is reasonable,' the letter from the jury foreman states.

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Betty Shelby leaves the Tulsa County Courthouse on Thursday, May 11, 2017. DYLAN GOFORTH/The Frontier

Tulsa Police Chief Chuck Jordan announced Friday that Officer Betty Shelby will be returning to work at the Police Department after being acquitted this week of first-degree manslaughter in the Sept. 16, 2016, fatal shooting of Terence Crutcher.

But Shelby, 43, who has been on unpaid administrative leave since she was charged in September, will not be returning to patrol duties.

“Pursuant to the jury verdict of acquittal in the criminal case of Officer Betty Shelby, she is being returned to duty,” Jordan said in a press release issued Friday morning. “She will not be assigned in a patrol capacity.”

Shelby, who is white, shot and killed Crutcher, 40, who was black, after encountering him and his SUV in the 2300 block of East 36th Street North. Crutcher was not armed.

Meanwhile, a letter from the foreperson of the jury in the Shelby trial was filed in Tulsa County District Court on Friday.

“This letter attempts to capture the thoughts of the jury as a whole as accurately as is reasonable,” the letter states.

One of the 12 jurors who acquitted Shelby of manslaughter on Wednesday told The Frontier on Thursday the jury penned a letter to TPD Chief Chuck Jordan saying that Shelby should never again be a patrol officer.

Jordan told The Frontier he intends to keep the letter private once he receives it.

Ryan Howard, clerk for Judge Doug Drummond, said they didn’t receive the letter about Shelby’s employment.

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Clifton Adcock

Senior Staff Writer

A veteran investigative reporter who has covered eastern Oklahoma for more than 15 years, Clifton joined The Frontier in April 2017. A native of southeastern Oklahoma, he has covered numerous issues from criminal justice to politics for publications including the Tulsa World, the Oklahoma Gazette, and Oklahoma Watch. Clifton holds a master’s degree in journalism from the University of Oklahoma. Clifton can be reached at clifton@readfrontier.com. Follow him on Twitter @cliftonhowze
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