Oklahoma has the second highest incarceration rate in the country, up from fourth highest in 2012, with approximately 1,310 out of every 100,000 of our citizens incarcerated in 2014. The state appropriated $485 million to the Department of Corrections in FY 2016, but even that amount was not enough to cope with increasingly overcrowded and understaffed prisons. Meanwhile, the state’s prison population continues Continue Reading »
Steve Lewis served as Speaker of the Oklahoma House of Representatives from 1989-1991. He currently practices law in Tulsa and represents clients at the Capitol. You can find past Capitol Updates archived on his website. There was an important announcement this week by leaders of the Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs (OBNDD) that they would like to start Continue Reading »
Steve Lewis served as Speaker of the Oklahoma House of Representatives from 1989-1991. He currently practices law in Tulsa and represents clients at the Capitol. You can sign up on his website to receive the Capitol Updates newsletter by email. Rep. Chris Kannady (R-OKC) has requested an interim study on District Attorney District and Judicial District consolidation. Many of the district Continue Reading »
The Oklahoma Legislature took some important steps on criminal justice reform in the 2016 session. This progress is the result of a collaborative effort by dozens of stakeholders to reduce penalties on low-level crimes and make alternative sentencing more accessible. Unfortunately, lawmakers’ longer track record of ratcheting up sentencing and expanding the criminal code was also on display this session.
- Every sentence is a life sentence: 3 barriers to life after prison
- Oklahoma’s mandatory minimum punishments too often don’t fit the crime
- Oklahoma Needs More Criminal Justice Reform
- Action Items for Oklahoma: Criminal Justice