KINGFISHER, Okla. − A former worker at an Oklahoma marijuana farm accused of killing four other workers had demanded $300,000 be returned to him for his “investment” in the illegal enterprise, prosecutors alleged last week.
Chen Wu, 45, was charged Friday in Kingfisher County with four counts of first-degree murder and one count of assault and battery with a deadly weapon in connection with the Nov. 20 killings at the farm near Hennessey, Oklahoma, — a small town about 68 miles northwest of Oklahoma City.
Eyewitnesses to the murders said the suspect demanded that $300,000, a portion of his “investment” in the enterprise, be returned to him, according to Assistant District Attorney Austin Murrey.
“The fact that it ($300,000) could not be handed over on a moment’s notice was what precipitated the mass murder,” Murrey told a judge.
A worker who was at the farm on the day of the killings told investigators that the suspect came into the garage and shot one man, who was called the “boss,” in the leg, according to an arrest affidavit in the case.
The suspect then held multiple people inside the garage at gunpoint, Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation agent Phillip Ott wrote in the affidavit.
“The suspect demanded $300,000 within the next half hour or he was going to kill everyone in the garage,” Ott added.
‘THIS WAS DEFINITELY NOT RANDOM’: 4 killed at Oklahoma marijuana farm were ‘executed,’ authorities say
Prosecutors are asking that he be held without bond.
“The defendant murdered four people in a matter of minutes, shot and wounded a fifth and took shots at, but missed, a sixth,” Murrey wrote in the request for no bond.
The victims of the attack were identified as Quirong Lin, Chen He Chun, Chen He Qiang, and Fang Hui Lee, according to the murder charge. A fifth person, Yi Fei Lin, was wounded.
Authorities previously said the suspect and all of the victims were Chinese citizens. Another worker at the farm told investigators Wu had worked at the farm about a year earlier.
The marijuana farm was operating under an illegally obtained license to grow marijuana for medical purposes, according to authorities.
Wu was arrested on Nov. 22 in Miami Beach, Florida, but has been returned to Oklahoma and was booked into the Kingfisher County jail on Thursday.
He is scheduled to make an initial appearance Wednesday, court documents show.
The prosecutor revealed in his legal motion asking for no bond that there is video showing portions of the crime. The prosecutor also revealed that the marijuana grow has been seized by law enforcement.
Contributing: The Associated Press