WAURIKA, OK (TNN) - The Mayor of Waurika and her husband are facing three felony charges after they allegedly created fraudulent documents and presented them to a judge while defending a client in court.
Mayor Carole Eakin and her husband, William Eakin, were arraigned on Friday morning to face three felony charges including Offering Fraudulent Evidence, Offering False Instrument for Recordation and Conspiracy.
Authorities allege that the Eakins created a false lease agreement and illegally had it signed and notarized before presenting it to a judge as evidence in a case.
According to court documents, Mr. Eakin was retained by a client who was renting land from a land owner who lives in California. The client claimed that his daughter and son-in-law bought the land under false pretenses and was forcing him to remove his property from the land.
He claimed, in a 2018 lawsuit, that he and the California resident had a verbal agreement for him to keep property on the land while paying rent. During the course of that lawsuit, documents say, William Eakin told the client that the only way he would be able to keep the land would be if they had a written lease. In December, court records say Mr. Eakin presented a lease agreement for his client to sign and that document had also been signed by the original landowner in California.
Authorities also contacted the California resident who said she had receive an unsigned lease agreement in the mail and signed it before mailing it back to the Eakin Law Office in Waurika. That document later had a notary seal, signed by Mayor Carole Eakin and dated June 1, 2013. The seal also had expired in 2016.
Investigators went to the Eakin Law Firm in Waurika and served a search warrant on January 3 while Mayor Eakin was there. They asked her for copies of documents which she reportedly failed to produce. She was also asked to produce the expired notary seal. Officers said after looking in multiple drawers and cabinets she failed to produce the seal. Investigators say they then walked over to the desk where she had looked multiple times, and found a notary which matched the seal on the alleged fraudulent document.
The Eakins were eventually taken into custody and on Friday went before a judge for their arraignment. During those proceedings, witnesses say the mayor was taken from the courtroom by ambulance after suffering a medical episode. Her current status is not known.
The couple was released on an “own recognizance” bond.
In 1995, Williams Eakin had his law license suspended for one year by the Oklahoma Bar Association after he was found guilty of professional misconduct while he was serving as a judge.