TULSA – Several charges including a racketeering charge were dismissed Friday against a northeast Oklahoma criminal defense lawyer.

Winston Connor II, 57, of Grove, was charged in 2018 with charges ranging from assault with a dangerous weapon, pandering, witness tampering, conspiracy to distribute a controlled dangerous substance, solicitation of prostitution, and violation of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations, or RICO, Act.

“This is a great victory,” said Clark Brewster, Connor’s attorney. A telephone call left with the Tulsa County District Attorney’s office was not returned.

The charges stem from Connor’s alleged involvement with a Tulsa massage parlor and convicted murderer, Slint Tate.

Associate Judge Clifford Smith dismissed the racketeering, pandering, and drug-related charges. A murder solicitation charge was dismissed in 2021, online court records show.

The state has the option of filing an appeal with the Criminal Court of Appeals, Brewster said. Should the Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals affirm Smith’s decision, the remaining charges will likely be dismissed based on improper venue because they did not occur in Tulsa, he said.

Smith’s dismissal leaves Connor facing solicitation and two other charges – assault and witness tampering and a misdemeanor charge of unauthorized communication with an inmate.

The misdemeanor charge of unauthorized communication with an inmate resulted in two assault and battery charges. The witness tampering charge stems from an Ottawa County divorce case.

“It is rewarding to see the court’s ruling,” Brewster said.

Tate is serving a life sentence for the July 1999 shooting death of Vernie Milford Roberts, a Delaware County reserve deputy.