Articles

Oklahomans for Criminal Justice Reform publishes articles on issues that are important to the criminal justice reform movement in Oklahoma.

Oklahoma Senate Bill 704 – Sentence Enhancement Reform

By Colleen McCarty | February 2, 2021

Authored by Senator Dave Rader, this SB704 is OCJR’s most ambitious legislation this session. SB704 has the potential to help Oklahomans serving excessive sentences for truly non-violent crimes while saving the state over $100 Million dollars over the next ten years.

Guiding Principles of Sentencing Reform

By Colleen McCarty | January 11, 2021

There are efforts underway to reform Oklahoma’s sentencing code. Oklahoma currently has some of the longest sentences in the world, compared to other states as well as other countries. This is due to an outdated criminal code that oftentimes provides extremely long ranges of punishment. Long sentence ranges, Oklahoma’s use of sentencing enhancements on all…

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Re-Entry Spotlight: R.I.S.E.

By Colleen McCarty | December 22, 2020

Oklahoma has struggled to implement effective re-entry programming that reduces recidivism and prepares justice-involved people for the workforce. Christie Luther – Director of R.I.S.E. – sought to change that. R.I.S.E. is the first-ever school of Cosmetology located inside an Oklahoma prison. We asked Christie about R.I.S.E. and why she feels it’s important to train justice-involved…

Is Prosecution Changing? What the New Los Angeles DA’s Agenda Indicates for the Future of Top Cops

By Colleen McCarty | December 15, 2020

This new wave of prosecution is indicative of a shift in the mindset of law enforcement nationwide. Most of them agree that the traditional tough-on-crime approach to prosecution and law enforcement has failed. They are ready to try something new.

RESTORATIVE JUSTICE: WHAT IS IT? WHO IS IT FOR? CAN IT WORK IN OKLAHOMA?

By Colleen McCarty | December 7, 2020

The term “restorative justice” has many meanings and applications. Mainly, it is a framework used to reconsider the ways our criminal justice system obtains justice. Where our criminal legal system seeks to redress wrongs for violation of the law, restorative justice seeks to heal harm to relationships, victims, offenders, and society as a whole.

How Can Oklahoma Safely Reduce Incarceration?

By Colleen McCarty | December 2, 2020

Thousands of Oklahomans spend their lives behind prison walls, often for non-violent and low-level felonies. Most of the citizens agree that the bloated prison system is a problem, but are unsure how to proceed with reducing the population while maintaining public safety. Here are five proven ways to reduce incarceration safely.