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Local doctor guilty of murdering nurse, sentenced to 30 years

A former Tahlequah physician, who was charged with murder in Arkansas, was found guilty of second-degree murder and sentenced to 30 years in prison.

Tyler Tait pleaded not guilty in November 2021 to first-degree murder charges in the death of local nurse, Moria Kinsey.

On Oct. 11, 2021, Kinsey was found unresponsive on the ground next to Tait’s vehicle on U.S. Highway 65. According to reports, Tait claimed Kinsey may have been suffering from a seizure. She was transported to a hospital where she was pronounced dead.

Investigators noticed bruising around Kinsey’s neck.

Special agents with the Arkansas State Police Criminal Investigation Division arrested Tait in Lake Village, Arkansas and, he was held at the Chicot County Jail.

According to court reports, Tait said he and Kinsey were headed back to Tahlequah after attending his brother’s funeral. Kinsey, at the time, was a travel nurse and was picked up in Hot Springs, Arkansas.

Special agents examined the vehicle in which Tait and Kinsey had been traveling from Mississippi to Tahlequah, and found evidence of a physical altercation inside.

According to court documents, the medical examiner asserts strangulation, and statements made by the prosecuting attorney to Tait’s attorneys alleged Kinsey’s cause of death was a “karate chop.”

Tait surrendered his Oklahoma Osteopathic Medical License on Nov. 4, 2021.

A $250,000 commercial bond was set and Tait’s attorney argued that amount was “excess and unreasonable” Tait’s family hired Linda Booker Bailbonds and agreed to accept the bond and conditions set by the court.

Tait was ordered to wear an ankle monitor and to have no contact with the victim’s family, or the mother of his child. According to court records, Tait was to reside with his family in Alabama and was ordered back for his pre-trial.

Tait had a $25,000 bond at Cherokee Nation, with the condition that he wear an ankle monitor and have no contact with the victim's family, or the mother of his child.

According to a source who sat in on the trial, Tait took the stand. Tait must serve 25 percent of his 30-year sentence before he is eligible for parole.


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