Pauls Valley, OK, Pauls Valley Democrat

Community News

August 26, 2012

Paoli officer gets big salute

Pauls Valley, Oklahoma — Actions that might very well have saved lives and are being described as heroic is the reason a Paoli police officer has received the highest of commendations.

The big salute has gone to James Caskey, who serves as the assistant police chief in Paoli.

It was Caskey who spotted something wrong and wouldn't let it go as his persistency ultimately led to the capture of an escapee from a Lexington prison this past March.

Caskey's boss, Paoli Police Chief Johnny Turner, is the one who nominated him for a Medal of Commendation from the Oklahoma Association of Chief's of Police.

Caskey was joined by his wife Kim when he collected his brand new honor during a recent ceremony.

“I think God puts special people in certain places for a reason,” Turner told the PV Democrat.

“The town council, mayor, myself, we're all extremely proud of his actions,” he said. “We're thankful he's one of ours.”

Caskey's medal is the result of an incident back on March 27 when David Hammock escaped from the Lexington correctional facility in a stolen Department of Corrections (DOC) van.

The escapee was able to avoid detection until the off duty Caskey, driving his own pickup, saw the van traveling southbound on Interstate 35 a few miles north Purcell.

According to Turner, Caskey at first thought it might be a DOC friend until he saw some things that weren't right, such as the driver was not dressed or groomed appropriately to be a DOC employee. Plus, the van was traveling far below the normal speed for the interstate.

He twice contacted the DOC before learning an inmate had escaped from the Lexington facility.

“He's a bull in a china closet who has so much tenacity,” Turner said about Caskey.

“He's really aggressive when it comes to doing the right thing,” he said. “He knew something wasn't right and wouldn't let it go.”

Thanks to Caskey various law enforcement agencies were contacted and sprung into action to get the prison escapee stopped.

The escapee, driving at speeds over 90 mph at times, was able to evade stop sticks on the road at one point before the pursuit finally came to a highly dangerous end when Hammock attempted to take the vehicle between two cars.

It resulted in a crash that totaled the DOC van and a state trooper's car about 30 miles south of Pauls Valley. It also nearly resulted in a trooper being hit by the van.

In all the pursuit starting with Caskey's initial spotting of the van stretched more than 60 miles.

“If James hadn't done what he did I think it could have been much worse,” Turner said.

Text Only
Community News
  • Blown tire causes area wreck

    A blown tire is the believed cause of a one-vehicle rollover near Paoli this week resulting in serious injuries for a Davis woman.

    April 24, 2014

  • Capitol trek is for county jails

    Tuesday, April 22 is the day for county law enforcement officials, including a few from Garvin County, to let lawmakers know what they think about a recent shift in policy taking state prisoners out of their county jails.

    April 22, 2014

  • New race set for this summer

    A busy election year has another vote lined up as two Stratford candidates are set to go for a town council office this summer.

    April 21, 2014

  • One more round of trouble for park

    For the public face of a Wynnewood area animal park a recent round of violations is just part of the ongoing attacks by a national group he says has put a bulls-eye on the facility.

    April 17, 2014

  • Prison shuffle to have a price

    One Garvin County official says there will be a price to pay with the recent transfer of Oklahoma Department of Corrections inmates being held in county jails like the one here.

    April 16, 2014

  • Political races set as filings end

    A series of political races at various levels, including some here in Garvin County, are now set as a three-day filing period ended Friday.

    April 14, 2014

  • Band punches ticket to big show

    Basketball’s big dance may be over but Pauls Valley High School’s band has punched its ticket to the big state contest for the fourth straight year.

    April 10, 2014

  • Deadly wreck still has questions

    Authorities are still not sure why the vehicle driven by a Pauls Valley man went across a roadway’s center line resulting in an accident and his death.

    April 8, 2014

  • Tragic loss spurs family event

    Two Wynnewood area widows who share a tragic bond have combined forces to organize an event meant to both honor their late husbands and help a worthy cause.

    April 7, 2014

  • United Fund plan moves to ballfield

    Part of a prayer opening a Pauls Valley United Fund meeting this week said it all as they gave thanks for being able to help others.

    April 3, 2014

Business Marquee

  • How You Want It When You Want It Today's Pauls Valley Democrat

    Now you can view and download the Democrat right to your desktop on the day the paper is published. Click here to get more information on the Democrat's e-Edition.





    e-mail request to

    April 20, 2011 1 Photo 1 Link

AP Video
US Proposes Pay-for-priority Internet Standards Wife Mourns Chicago Doctor Killed in Afghanistan FDA Proposes Regulations on E-cigarettes Kerry Warns Russia of Expensive New Sanctions Mideast Peace Talks Stall on Hamas Deal Cody Walker Remembers His Late Brother Paul Grieving South Korea Puts Up Yellow Ribbons Raw: Kerry Brings His Dog to Work Raw: Girls Survive Car Crash Into Their Bedroom Three U.S. Doctors Killed by Afghan Security Yankees' Pineda Suspended 10 Games for Pine Tar Colleagues Mourn Death of Doctors in Afghanistan Ukraine Launches Operation Against Insurgents Obama Reassures Japan on China Raw: Car Crashes Into San Antonio Pool Time Magazine Announces Top Influencers List Raw: Angry Relatives Confront SKorea Officials Bigger Riders Means Bigger Horses Out West Yankees Pineda Ejected for Pine Tar Deadly Fungus Killing Bats, Spreading in US