Death Penalty for Repeat Child Molesters Wins Approval in OK Senate - - Texoma news, weather and sports

Death Penalty for Repeat Child Molesters Wins Approval in OK Senate

State Senator Jay Paul Gumm, (D) Durant State Senator Jay Paul Gumm, (D) Durant

From news release:

SB 1747 Could Be Signed into Law in Matter of Days

OKLAHOMA CITY – A bill aimed at creating a safer Oklahoma by giving juries in Oklahoma the option of sentencing repeat child molesters to life without parole or the death penalty received approval of the full Senate today.

The bill’s author, Senator Jay Paul Gumm, a Democrat from Durant, explained Senate Bill 1747 passed with a bi-partisan majority vote with the title on; meaning the bill could be signed into law as early as next week if the House agrees to fast track the measure.

"By keeping the title on the bill, we are sending it to the House in hopes of getting the bill to the Governor’s desk with rapid speed," Gumm said. "We as a Legislature should leave no stone unturned in our effort to protect the children of Oklahoma."

The Senator said government has to greater moral obligation than to ensure the safety and well being of its citizens.

"Those who repeatedly prey on our children in this unspeakable manner should face the most severe penalties allowed under our justice system," said Gumm, who also serves as Assistant Majority Leader in the Senate.

Senate Bill 1747 would make repeat child molesters subject to the death penalty or life without parole. That, Gumm said, would let the justice system better protect children from those sex offenders who never will be rehabilitated.

"There are too many stories of child molesters who are set free only to shatter the life of another innocent child," he said. "I want to make certain that in Oklahoma we are doing everything we can to ensure that never happens here in our state."

Gumm’s bill expands on the new Oklahoma law making the most heinous repeat offenders subject to the death penalty. The lawmaker noted that child sexual abuse has lifelong ramifications.

"We allow the death penalty for those who kill the body," he said. "Why wouldn’t we have the same penalty for someone who kills a soul?" Gumm said as a parent and lawmaker, he wants the strongest laws possible on the books to protect Oklahoma’s children.

He thanked Senator Jonathan Nichols for working with him to ensure the bill that passed off the Senate floor today was the strongest bill possible to protect the lives of Oklahoma children.

"By sending a message to those who repeatedly prey on our children that Oklahoma will not tolerate this sort of horrible crime, we are doing our part to create a safer Oklahoma for all our citizens." Gumm concluded.