Friday, October 02, 2020

Group calls pro-SQ805 ads "disengenuous", says ads hide criminals' long rap sheets

“DISINGENUOUS:” Proponents of State Question 805 Are Hiding “Long Rap Sheets” of the Criminals in Their Ad

Criminals featured in Ad actually have much longer criminal records than suggested — perpetrators have been charged with serial theft, stolen vehicle, weapons charge, obstructing an officer, drug possession, assault and battery, and more.

“These are far from first-time offenders,” says former Governor Frank Keating

Oklahoma City (No 805, October 1, 2020) — Proponents of State Question 805 launched their Ad just a few days ago, suggesting that the criminals featured in it just needed a little more leniency for their offenses.

However, a FACT CHECK now reveals that the individuals featured in the ad actually have a long trail of crimes behind them that tells quite a different story.

9 felonies total

A criminal character who is portrayed in their initial ad is a person whom proponents say is an older woman arrested for just “writing a few bad checks.” But in fact, the Oklahoma Department of Corrections database proves that where there’s smoke, there’s fire.

The character in the ad appears to be based on Mary L. Phillips, who didn’t just “write a few bad checks” — rather, she has at least 14 counts of bogus check-writing, forgery, possession of a controlled substance (drugs), larceny, and more. She has 9 felonies:


7 felonies total

The 805 ad also highlights a veteran named “Bruce” — whom the proponents of S.Q. 805 portray as a guy who after leaving the military was just a little down on his luck. However, Bruce was given many chances even after committing theft, possession of drugs, and stealing a vehicle, He was given every opportunity including drug court in lieu of prison — but eventually he even went AWOL from that. He has 7 felonies total.

8 felonies total

Another individual that proponents of 805 like to discuss is “Barry” — who proponents suggest was facing incarceration for simply “stealing a lawnmower” — but he, too, has a long rap sheet. “Barry,” who has also used an alias, has at least 8 prior offenses in 3 different jurisdictions and has committed serial theft, stolen a vehicle, was in possession of a controlled substance (drugs), obstructed an officer, had a weapons charge, and more. After he failed drug court, he was placed on an ankle monitor to return to society; while still on his ankle monitor, he committed assault and battery. His Department of Corrections rap sheet actually looks like this:

“Proponents of S.Q. 805 talk about second chances, however this was ‘Barry’s’ ninth chance. If 805 becomes law, and ‘Barry’ commits his 10th felony, he’ll be out in a matter of days because neither the judge nor jury will be permitted to take into account his history as a repeat offender,” said Muskogee County District Attorney Orvil Loge.  “When the system is working harder to keep a criminal out of prison than the criminal himself is, there is clearly a problem.”

9 total felonies

The Yes on S.Q. 805 also features a “single mother” who was simply “shoplifting.” But a closer look at her record shows that she was actually a serial shoplifter with multiple violations of larceny/theft, in addition to forgery and at least five (5) occasions of possession of drugs — with at least one occasion of possession of drugs with the intent to distribute (drug dealing). With 9 total felonies, her rap sheet looks like this:


“These criminals are far from first-time offenders, and for proponents of State Question 805 to suggest otherwise is disingenuous,” said former Governor Frank Keating, supporter of Oklahomans United against 805, former prosecutor and former U.S. Attorney. Keating also oversaw the nation’s top law enforcement agencies such as the Secret Service and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms.  “S.Q. 805 would reward repeat offenders, encouraging them to continue committing crimes including check forgery, possession of drugs, domestic violence in the presence of a child, child trafficking, solicitation of a child using online technology, and more. Oklahomans deserve better than this.”


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