Oklahoma sends people to prison for much longer than almost every other state — nearly 70% longer, on average, for property crimes and 79% longer for drug crimes. Do these long prison terms for nonviolent offenders make us safer? No. Our state’s crime rates and other research suggest that excessive prison sentences do not produce safer communities.
I am a survivor of domestic abuse. I’m also a believer in stopping senseless sentencing enhancements that don’t help our community. I won’t be manipulated into silence or a convenient point of view for those in power.
Oklahoma has taken some giant strides toward a better criminal justice system. Last month, we celebrated the largest single-day commutation event in U.S. history. Families came back home and neighbors rejoined their communities.