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Ferrier sues school, describes sex, takes 5th in O-T School teacher rape charge case

[ 2 ] June 1, 2017 |

Mrs. Kathryn Wilmott

By JOHN M. WYLIE II and CAROLYN ESTES
Leader writers
Copyright 2017 Oologah Lake Leader LLC

Keenen Ferrier of Oologah spent a grueling day in court Wednesday, filing a massive lawsuit against the school and former teacher Kathryn Wilmott and testifying under oath in the second degree rape case against her.

The now 19-year-old described them having sex when he was 17 and 18 but then repeatedly invoked his Fifth Amendment right not to answer cross-examination questions from defense lawyers about his previous testimony there and before a grand jury.

The cross examination was still going on when court adjournment time arrived, and the hearing will continue at 9 a.m. Friday, Aug. 4.

Mrs.Wilmott was represented in court by attorneys Ed Blau, who did the questioning, and Greg Dark, who has been involved in the case from the start.

“He (Ferrier) had to have pled the 5th at least 50 times but we’ll have an accurate count when we receive the transcript in a few days,” Dark said.

He said he expected cross examination of Ferrier to last at least another two hours when the hearing resumes.

The hearing Wednesday before Rogers County Judge Terrell Crosson had been set for 1 p.m. but did not begin until 2:27 p.m. and ended at 4:32 p.m.—more than 90 minutes into Crosson’s scheduled 3 p.m. hearing docket.

After cross-examination concludes, Judge Crosson is also scheduled in August to hear testimony from Oologah High School Principal Melissa Overcash and an OSBI agent before deciding if there is sufficient evidence to put Mrs. Willmott on trial for the alleged crime.

During his direct testimony, Ferrier said the relationship with Wilmott involved frequent conversations on Snap Chat and that they talked any time of the day or the night until as late as midnight.

Keenen Ferrior

Asked by Assistant District Attorney Zach Cabell if Mrs. Wilmott had asked him to come to her home, Ferrier testified that she had.

When asked if he knew the reason for the invitation he said, “We both knew why.”

Ferrier did not provide an exact number of times he and the former teacher had sex, but he said it was multiple times.

After first saying he couldn’t remember the locations, he said sex occurred at her house, at his house, at a hotel near the airport at Tulsa and at school.

When Blau began cross-examining Ferrier after relatively short questioning by the prosecutor, the initial focus was on the Snap Chat conversations between him and Mrs. Wilmott.

He answered the questions but said he was tired, he didn’t want to be there and he wanted to go to work.

Then he began showing discomfort about answering some questions, which asked if certain past statements had been true or lies.

Judge Crosson after hearing multiple exchanges halted the proceedings and asked if he was aware of his rights and if he would like to talk to an attorney.

The proceedings recessed at 3:19 p.m. so he could confer with the attorneys representing him in the lawsuit.

The proceedings resumed at 3:25 p.m. and he answered a few more questions but after that pleaded the 5th Amendment to most queries. The 5th Amendment to the Constitution provides citizens with the right “to not be a witness against himself” in a criminal proceeding.

This went on for about an hour before the judge, who also had to hear another case, determined that the hearing would have to be continued to the new date in August.

The 13-count lawsuit, filed by Ferrier and his parents Kevin and Debbie Ferrier, seeks actual damages in excess of $75,000 for Keenan on each of six counts against the school: breach of fiduciary duties, negligence, negligent hiring retaining and supervision of an employee, deprivation of Constitutional rights, intentional infliction of emotional distress and loss by Keenen of parental consortium; and three counts against Mrs. Wilmott: battery, intentional infliction of emotional distress, and loss of parental consortium.

His father and mother each seek damages on two counts against the school and on the same two counts separately against Mrs. Wilmott: intentional infliction of emotional distress and loss of consortium of a child.

It adds that, “the Court should grant Plaintiffs all available compensatory and other damages, pre and post judgment interest, costs and attorney’s fees, punitive damages in excess of the amount prescribed for diversity jurisdiction for Defendants’ reckless, intentional and or malicious conduct with regards to Plaintiffs.”

Besides specific allegations, the lawsuit contended that Wilmott had a reputation for being “cool” and hanging out with students outside class, of “hooking up with students,” and in a case which it alleges the school investigated that “Wilmott furnished alcohol to several male students at her home on a weekend.”

(Nowata County Court records show that Keenan Ferrier, then 17, was arrested by the Oklahoma Highway Patrol on March 2, 2015 at US 169 and Choctaw in Nowata and pleaded no contest March 23 to possession of low point beer by a person under 21. He was given a deferred 90-day sentence, paid $256.50 in fines and court costs, and completed the deferment on June 23, 2015.)

Members of the Ferrier family are being represented by Noah Fontanez and Amber Masters of the Tulsa firm of Dunlap, Bennett & Ludwig in the lawsuit. It was filed at 10:55 a.m. Tuesday, the Court Clerk’s office said.

“We are aware of the lawsuit and not all of the allegations in it are accurate, but because of ongoing litigation, we cannot comment further at this time,” Oologah-Talala Superintendent Max Tanner said.

Dark and Blau reviewed the suit and Dark issued a vehement denial of all its allegations:

“I want to be unequivocal and crystal clear about the lawsuit filed against Mrs. Wilmott and the Oologah-Talala School District yesterday.

“The allegations are both legally and factually incorrect. The claims included about Katie are false statements that are presented as fact to bolster a shameful money-grab.

“We look forward to her full exoneration.”

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Comments (2)

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  1. leslee Hamilton says:

    I thought victims of sexual assalt and minors names, much less pictures were left out of the public news? I also feel the lawsuit should be directed at the teacher individually unless the shool was aware beyond a reasonable doubt. The public school is already out of money and the actions of one sicko teacher, lost teen, and upset (rightfully so) parents shouldn’t affect an entire school children seducation. It is like punishing everyone in the school system for this.

    • Leader says:

      Normally you are correct. However, when the individual and his family filed a lawsuit against the taxpayers of the Oologah-Talala School District just two hours before the preliminary hearing in the criminal case began, they waived our policy by that action–and it is a policy of a news organization, not a law or regulation. As for him being a minor, he is not by any public records standard–some set the age at below 17, some at below 18 but in this case he is 19 and not considered a minor for publication by any standard of which I know. The policy on secrecy is overridden by the policy that taxpayers have the right to know who is seeking unlimited damages against them–the Material Services judgment that Rogers County taxpayers will be funding through an extra sales tax is a perfect example. And the lawsuit–with the name included–is posted on the state courts website for anyone to read at no cost and we will post it to our website shortly. So the name was available to the public as of shortly before 11 a.m. Wednesday and we did not post it until last evening. Thank you for asking.