Lawmakers Discuss Death Penalty For Repeat Sex Offenders

Started by heidi salazar, August 16, 2009, 08:16:21 PM

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heidi salazar

By Ashli Sims, The News On 6

TULSA, OK - An Oklahoma lawmaker pushes to toughen laws against repeat sex offenders.  A Sand Springs legislator wants repeat child molesters to face the death penalty.  But, the idea might not pass constitutional muster.

The arrest of a two-time convicted sex offender for kidnapping and molestation has prompted outrage.  And, the uproar has a state lawmaker from Sand Springs calling for action to toughen penalties against repeat sex offenders.

08/14/2009  Related Story: Sand Springs Lawmaker Wants Death For Repeat Child Molesters

"That individual ought to be, at the discretion of the district attorney, eligible for the death penalty," said Representative Rex Duncan of Sand Springs.

It's not the first time the idea has come up.  Oklahoma Senator Jonathan Nichols of Norman introduced a bill in 2006.

"It will send a clear message to child predators in the state of Oklahoma we will find you, we will prosecute you, and we will put you to death," said Senator Jonathan Nichols.

The U.S. Supreme Court intercepted that message in 2008.  The nation's highest court ruled in a split decision the death penalty was unconstitutional for the rape of a child.  The move struck down death penalty laws in five states, including Oklahoma.

"The intent of my legislation would be to find a way around the Supreme Court's prohibition on the use of the death penalty for child molesters," said Representative Rex Duncan of Sand Springs.

Representative Duncan says the U.S. Supreme Court case involved a Louisiana inmate convicted of his first offense and he believes the outcome would be different for a two-time sex offender.

But, Oklahoma's first law dealt with repeat offenders.  Duncan admits it will be an uphill battle.  But, with a high profile case fresh in people's minds, he says it's worth the fight.

"If they are found guilty a second time by a jury of their peers then the public ought to have the piece of mine that individual will never walk the streets again," said Representative Rex Duncan.

http://www.newson6.com/global/story.asp?s=10934256

Mastodon

#1
August 16, 2009, 09:50:06 PM Last Edit: August 16, 2009, 09:52:23 PM by Mastodon
Don't agree.  Just lock them up for life.

If they did pass something like this, they'd have to be careful how they worded it.  How are they going to define "molestation" and the age limit of the victim.

Could you imagine someone getting the death penalty for "molesting" a 17 yr old but another person getting 10 years for forcibly raping an 18 yr old?

Let's worry about perfecting the DP system before weighing it down with more redtape.

Granny B


Don't agree.  Just lock them up for life.

If they did pass something like this, they'd have to be careful how they worded it.  How are they going to define "molestation" and the age limit of the victim.

Could you imagine someone getting the death penalty for "molesting" a 17 yr old but another person getting 10 years for forcibly raping an 18 yr old?

Let's worry about perfecting the DP system before weighing it down with more redtape.


The problem is, that some people use the word molestation interchangably with sexual assault and rape.  They are not all the same thing.  The law defines each differently.

And an 18 year old is over the child age limit.   As a matter of fact in Oklahoma a 16 year old is able to have consenual sex with any age.  One day under age 16 and they are jail bait. 

A boy I have worked with since he was 6 years old just got caught in a trap of his own making.  He just turned 18, but was having consensual sex with a 14 year old girl.  He is now charged  with sexual assault, because she is under the age of consent and it is considered statutory rape.  He is not the 1st 18 year old she has had sex with either, and has already had 2 abortions with other guys, and a failed pregnancy.   But this time her parents decided to make an example of this boy.  Not the other ones who actually got her pregnant, but with this one.

I don't agree with the death penalty for sexual assault or molestation.  Though, some serial rapists and serial child molestors do deserve it for the lives they have ruined.   Nor does our agency or other domestic violence/sexual assault agencies across the state support the death penalty for them either.  So I can tell you right now, that with us opposing the law, it will never pass.

Our stance is that the death penalty for them will cause more rapists to murder their victims.  Therefore we will be very proactive in opposing the law.  It will not pass, never fear.
" Closure? Closure is a misused word in the English language.  There is no such thing as closure for the family of a murder victim.  There will never be any closure for the death of our loved ones until we are dead ourselves.  The families have a lifetime sentence of anguish and sadness." 
Susan Levy

Jeff1857

The Kennedy case in Louisiana was decided by the Supremes not allowing execution for child rape and they refused to rehear the case. I don't see the state of Oklahoma getting around that.

heidi salazar

Representative Duncan says the U.S. Supreme Court case involved a Louisiana inmate convicted of his first offense and he believes the outcome would be different for a two time sex offender.


Obviously he isn't going to be successful, but stiffer sentencing could be a result of the push to change the law.

Hutchsmash

I have to agree with GoB on this one.  Such a law would probably give rise to a higher murder rate for this sick offenses, while rape and molestation causes great psychological and physical harm, it is harm that the person can recover from.  As Heidi said, hopefully tougher sentencing can come from this push, I certainly support that. 
"How come life in prison doesn't mean life? Until it does, we're not ready to do away with the death penalty. Stop thinking in terms of "punishment" for a minute and think in terms of safeguarding innocent people from incorrigible murderers."

JESSE VENTURA, I Ain't Got Time to Bleed

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