NORMAN — Sen. Ralph Shortey surrendered to Cleveland County Sheriff’s deputies at 12:16 p.m., who processed Shortey at the Cleveland County jail. He posted a $100,000 bond and was released a few hours later. Shortey has promised to make a statement regarding his three felony charges related to child prostitution, but has yet to do so.
Oklahoma Lt. Gov. Todd Lamb, Senate Pro-Tem Mike Schulz, Senate minority leader John Sparks and the Oklahoma County GOP have called for Shortey’s resignation, and his Senate colleagues voted Wednesday to strip him of a variety of legislative privileges, but Shortey, for the time being, remains able to vote and draw a $3,200 state paycheck.
“In light of the criminal charges filed against you today, I respectfully request on behalf of the Oklahoma State Senate your immediate resignation as Senator of District 44,” Schulz, a Republican from Altus, wrote in a letter to Shortey.
Shortey was charged with engaging in child prostitution, engaging in child prostitution within 1,000 feet of a church and transporting a minor for the purpose of prostitution.
The charges follow an investigation by the Moore Police Department into Shortey’s actions the night of March 9. According to a Moore police report, officers were alerted by a juvenile’s father that his teenage son had entered into a Moore motel room with an adult, later identified as Shortey.
Police approached the motel room, and smelled marijuana coming from the room. They knocked on the door, according to the report, and made contact with Shortey, eventually opening the door with a master key. Police observed backpacks with condoms and lotion in them, and found a Kindle Fire with a text conversation between Shortey and the juvenile that detailed Shortey allegedly promising to pay the juvenile for sex. No one was arrested that night.