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Material witness sought in March killing; alleged murder accessory arrested

Material witness sought in March killing; alleged murder accessory arrested

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A Tulsa County judge issued a warrant last week after a material witness failed to appear at a preliminary hearing in a March murder case. 

Wendell Alexander, 20, is sought for his eyewitness testimony in the March 13 killing of Eric Graves. The Tulsa Police Department shared a photo of Alexander online and asked anyone with information on his whereabouts to call Tulsa Crime Stoppers at 918-596-COPS (2677).

Alexander reportedly told detectives he would be at the hearing July 7 but failed to show up. Prosecutors wrote in the arrest warrant request that the measure was the "only practical way to secure this witness." 

Lorraine Graves, a relative of the victim's who initially gave detectives an interview, was subpoenaed for the same hearing, and though she did appear, she told a victim witness advocate that she would no longer cooperate in the investigation nor would she remember anything she told detectives earlier, according to an affidavit for a warrant for her arrest on a murder accessory charge.

Court affidavits allege that Gabriel Hopson, 20, and Jayden Hopson, 19, killed Eric Graves, 30, in a shootout at the Wedgewood Court apartments, 1140 E. 61st St., on a Saturday night. 

Alexander reportedly was in the room where the shooting occurred and also was struck by the gunfire. He told detectives that Jayden Hopson was upset because the woman in whom he was interested "liked" Eric Graves, and when the Hopsons pulled their guns on Graves, Graves began shooting at them. The Hopsons allegedly fired back, wounding Graves and Alexander.

Court documents also allege Lorraine Graves effectively "facilitated the discarding of the potential murder weapon" when she later gave Gabriel Hopson a ride — after he had told her about her relative's killing — to another apartment complex, where he handed off the gun to another man. She also did not attempt to to notify law enforcement with the information she had about Eric Graves' death before her family notified detectives, the affidavit states. 

Lorraine Graves was arrested Thursday afternoon and booked into the Tulsa County jail. She is held in lieu of $500,000 bond. 

The Hopsons both face a first-degree murder charge, according to Tulsa County court records. Jayden Hopson additionally faces a charge of possession of a firearm after juvenile adjudication, and Gabriel Hopson also faces a charge of possession of a firearm after former conviction of a felony. 

Gabriel Hopson is facing the same charges in two separate ongoing court cases, along with charges of gang-related offense and unlawful possession of methamphetamine with the intent to distribute. 

The Hopsons are next scheduled to appear in court July 27. 


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Staff Writer

I write because I care about people, policing and peace, and I believe the most informed people make the best decisions. I joined the Tulsa World in 2019 and currently cover breaking news. Phone: 918-581-8455

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