An Oklahoma County District Court jury has acquitted a former state auditor and a convicted murderer of conspiring to steal nearly $10,000 from the state’s unclaimed property fund.
Last Thursday jurors found LaTisha Raye Reid, of Oklahoma City, and David Duane Edinburgh, of Choctaw, not guilty of conspiracy to defraud the state.
Reid, 43, was accused of stealing $30,000 from the $350 million unclaimed property fund in 2010 and 2011 while she worked as an internal auditor for the state treasurer’s office.
State prosecutors alleged Reid’s scheme used relatives and friends including Edinburgh, her aunt’s boyfriend. Three of five defendants in the case pleaded guilty and received deferred sentences.
Edinburgh, 60, was acquitted of all five charges against him. Reid testified last week that she took Edinburgh’s driver’s license and Social Security card without his knowledge and then used them to create bogus documents in order to file a claim with the state fund.
Reid told jurors he cashed a state-issued check for $9,901.99 after she assured him it was a legitimate check for unclaimed property.
Edinburgh was convicted of fatally shooting his stepfather in the head with a .22 caliber rifle in 1990. He spent 18 years of a life sentence in prison. He was paroled in 2009 and had been in jail since he was indicted in September until his release last Thursday night.
"The U.S. legal system continues to be the greatest in the world at protecting the wrongly accused," said Craig Hoehns, Edinburgh’s attorney. "This case has shown that system continues to work as Mr. Edinburgh, an innocent man, was sent home a free man."
Reid was charged in three other cases. She pleaded guilty to 23 of 24 charges against her earlier this month, but disputed the conspiracy charge.
Reid is expected to be sentenced on the other counts in June.