www.ktul.com/news/stories/1105/278099.html (external - login to view)
Oklahoma's NewsChannel 8:
Tragedy May Have Led To Wilson's Problems With Alcohol
Tuesday November 15, 2005 5:34pm
Reporter: Yvonne Harris Posted By: Kevin King
Tulsa Man's 13-Hundred Arrests Cost Tulsa Taxpayers More Than $260,000
Tulsa - How does a man go from normal to notorious with 13-hundred arrests? We have a look behind those arrests at how his life got to this point. NewsChannel 8 first broke the story of Jeffery Banks Wilson Monday. Yvonne Harris continues her investigation into the case that everyone is talking about.
When he's not in jail, Jeffery Banks Wilson is a frequent visitor to downtown shelters -- the Day Center, the Salvation Army and at the John 3:16 Mission. The details of his life are few and far between. He has stayed at the John 3:16 Mission and even entered their alcohol treatment program.
Wilson, now 60 years old, allegedly began drinking at age 15 over family issues which may have played a part in his life on the streets.
"I think Jeff is a pretty tender fella, and he feels things pretty deeply," says David Ganzert. "And, for some of the tragedies that he's had in the past, those are some of the things that he struggles with."
Before the streets, Wilson worked as a barber and a cook and was good a both. Tim Jones is a barber. And, while he didn't know him, Jones says one could make a decent living.
"Pretty good. It's slow sometimes and busy sometimes."
Before Wilson became known on Tulsa's streets, he had lived in Miami thirty years ago and had been arrested there for public intoxication. It would become a pattern and one woven into Tulsa's criminal justice system.
"The issue becomes for society and our community, do we spend the resources to put him in jail and keep him there, or do we spend the resources for treatments to try to help him get better," says Assistant District Attorney Doug Drummond.
For now, Wilson is scheduled to be back in court Wednesday for failing to register as a sex offender. Two things could result. He could be sent to prison for the balance of his probation. Or, he could be allowed to continue his probation outside of jail. But, according to those who know him, Wilson's biggest challenge remains to be alcohol.
"He looks forward to the day when this stuff will not be a problem for him," Ganzert says. "He talks about that with me."
The John 3:16 Mission not only provides free shelter to those living on the streets, it provides treatment for addictions. The last time Wilson was there was about a month ago. And, we're told he would be welcomed again.