- Ada, Oklahoma


February 13, 2012

Oklahoma House bill will reward violent criminals, family asserts


Ada —

Editor, The Ada News:

I am not a political activist. For the most part, House bills being proposed do not interest me. I don’t even fancy myself as being a well-educated woman. However, I have been to a few goat ropins and a county fair and will tell you I have never been so infuriated as I am after reading proposed HB 3052. That bill is set to go before committee next week. From there to the House and then on to the Senate in the state of Oklahoma. After that, it will become law. The bill is almost certainly a slam dunk simply because of who authored it. That would be Kris Steele, the speaker of the house. I can assure you this bill does not serve the best interest of the law-abiding citizens of this state. It only serves the best interest of violent criminals. They are listed by offense in the bill.

It is my understanding Speaker Steele wrote this bill at the request of district attorneys and wardens from around our great state. It would be very helpful to the voters to know the names of those district attorneys considering they are elected officials just as Speaker Steele, members of the committee, House members and state senators. If names were made available, then we would know who to contact and ask one simple question. “Are you serious?” If you are, then you should start looking for another job today. This idiotic bill will allow all manner of vermin to be released from prison early due to credits earned for good behavior the day they enter prison. Really!!! That to me is a problem. Rewarding prisoners should never be an option. We have been doing that for years and yet all the prisons are full and they have a waiting list. So how about we give common sense some CPR and revive it. Common sense tells me if you are in prison, you are there to be punished. Here’s what you get for good behavior … nothing. The flip side of that is this. For bad behavior you are going to get further punishment! Walk in here (prison) and cause trouble (and) you’re going to be in trouble.

Growing up, I only wish I could have earned credits for good behavior when I was being punished. That makes me laugh out loud. Being a child in the 1950s when you were going be punished for bad behavior, there wasn’t time to earn credits because as soon as dad got home and mom told him how you misbehaved, your punishment was coming as soon as he removed his belt. Therefore, I can assure you at my house the incentive to behave wasn’t that we could earn credits. The motivation for good behavior was to avoid punishment.

A violent criminal should not be able to earn credits toward early release. They did the crime and they should serve the time. If this HB 3052 passes  as written, a sentence of 10 years could easily be served in 5 years. If our trusted judicial officials had wanted a convicted violent offender to serve 5 years, that would have been the sentence.

This bill would slaughter our current courts decisions. Are we going to stand for this?

Call your representative, call your senator, call your neighbors. Stop HB 3052 amending 21 OAS. 2011, Section 13.1 before it becomes law.

I have contacted Speaker Kris Steele and Rep. Todd Themes and, as of this writing, have had no response.

Shirley Phillips

Daughter of violent crime

survivor Claude Arterburn


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