The Law Blog of Oklahoma

Oklahoma Man Pleads No Contest in Father's Death

Posted: Tuesday, June 20, 2017

A Bethany man who kicked his father in the head, causing a fatal brain injury, has pleaded no contest to charges related to the death.

Samuel Michael Harman, 22, reached a plea agreement with prosecutors. In exchange for a plea of no contest to charges of second degree murder, kidnapping, and violating a protective order, Harman was sentenced to 35 years in prison.

Harman has a documented history of mental illness, including psychosis, hallucinations, paranoid delusions, schizophrenia, and anxiety. His mother states he also has a history of drug abuse, and the violence related to his mental health and substance abuse issues prompted both parents to file protective orders against their son in the months and weeks before the death of Marcus Harman, 70.

In February 2015, Marcus Harman filed a protective order against his son. In April 2015, Barbara Harman filed a protective order against Samuel, accusing him of violence and constantly being under the influence of drugs. She claimed that he hit her and tried to kill her.

On June 6, 2015, Samuel Harman became angry with his father. He violated the protective order prohibiting him from going to his parents' home and became involved in an altercation with the older man. He barricaded himself and his father inside the home, beating his father and breaking his cell phone so that he could not get help. As he beat the older man, he kicked him in the head.

Marcus Harman complained of a headache after the incident, and he died the next day of a brain injury.

Samuel Harman was charged with second degree murder, kidnapping, and violating a protective order. However, given his mental health history, competency issues complicated and delayed the resolution of his case. On Friday, Harman pleaded no contest to the charges related to the assault and death of his father as well as numerous other charges he accumulated while in custody. These include assault and battery, assault and battery of a law officer, assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, and three counts of possession of contraband in a penal institution.

He is sentenced to 35 years for murder, 35 years for kidnapping, and one year for violating a protective order. All sentences in this case are to run concurrently with each other and with the other charges he accumulated while in custody. He is given credit for time served.

Second degree murder is an "85 percent crime," meaning Harman must serve at least 85 percent of his sentence--nearly 30 years--before becoming eligible for parole.

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