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Small-town Oklahoma police chief allegedly murdered by fellow officer who was his best friend
Slain Mannford Police Chief Lucky Miller. (Image source: YouTube video screenshot)

Small-town Oklahoma police chief allegedly murdered by fellow officer who was his best friend

'None of this makes sense'

A police chief from a small town in Oklahoma was killed while attending a conference in Florida, and his close friend and fellow officer is accused of murdering him, according to the Tulsa World.

Mannford Police Chief Lucky Miller, 44, was found dead in a hotel room in Pensacola, Florida, Sunday night, and Mannford Officer Michael Nealey was arrested Monday morning on a homicide complaint.

Miller's death, and Nealey's alleged involvement, has left the Mannford community, located 23 miles west of Tulsa, hurt and confused.

"Lucky was a great man, but I'll be honest, so was Officer Nealey," Mannford Mayor Tyler Buttram said. "Those two were the best of friends. Where one was, the other one was. They were always together. We ask that everybody pray for both families because two families have been devastated by this horrible tragedy. They do not understand what's going on. None of this makes sense. Not one single person can fathom the thought of any of this. It's so confusing."

Escambia County police in Florida believe Miller's death was the result of an "alcohol-fueled brawl" in their hotel room. Hotel security had come to their room once because the two men were reportedly being disruptive. Later in the night, hotel staff called the police because they were actually fighting.

When authorities arrived, Miller was dead in the room. There was no weapon at the scene. Miller's autopsy is pending.

The situation is devastating to the Mannford Police Department, which only had eight officers counting Miller and Nealey. Now, the town is trying to piece things together after the loss of a quarter of the force. Jerry Ridley, a longtime police officer, was named interim police chief by town administrator Gerald Haury.

"I can't understand it. Lucky was a friend, a mentor, a leader, a police officer and a family man. ... We can't even wrap our heads around this. The city's just stunned. The police department's stunned. Nothing makes sense, nothing adds up," Buttram said.


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