State official calls for overhaul of criminal justice system

Homework: If mid-term studies are a leading indicator of legislative activity for the upcoming session, State Rep. Justin Humphery, R-Lane, is going to wear down some House staffers.

Humphrey has completed at least half a dozen studies this fall on corrections and justice reform. It is something close to his heart.

“My intention is to completely change the criminal justice system so that we can better deal with repeat offenders and hold real criminals accountable for their actions. It’s the heart of public safety,” Humphrey said in a press release late last week. “But, we have to stop treating everyone like a criminal. Some people struggle with substance abuse and addiction issues. Some people struggle with mental illness or trauma in their lives. We need to get these people the right help, which is much more cost effective than throwing them in jail. We also need to overhaul our probation and parole system.

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If that makes Humphrey sound like some kind of cheeky liberal, that’s misleading. He was the one who once branded pregnant women as ‘hosts’ of fetuses with little or no abortion rights, and he was instrumental in passing legislation to exclude transgender athletes. women’s and women’s athletics.

And he’s a former prison officer, drug court administrator, and independent parole supervisor who’s about as good a friend as the Capitol court officers.

But, he said, “If we keep sending money to prisons, they will find a way to use everything we send them. If we want real reform, we need to start sending money to programs that help get to the root of the problem.

Assistant dogs: Not really political, but it’s still worth noting that the Oklahoma Department of Corrections’ five new contraband sniffer dogs discovered 2.75 pounds of marijuana, 16 pounds of tobacco, and 14 cell phones – yes, they can even find cell phones – in a farm building near the Oklahoma State Correctional Facility in Granite.

The new recruits are Belgian Malinois and, according to the DOC, will soon add fentanyl detection to their repertoire.

BIA Silver: The Oklahoma Tribal Nations received just over $1 million of the $44.4 million in Climate Resilience Grants distributed by the Bureau of Indian Affairs.

Among the funds and where they go:

Chickasaw, $53,178, workshops.

Cherokee, $245,037, developing a resilience plan.

Chickasaw, $212,420, vulnerability assessments.

Kaw, $250,000, predicting impacts including water and Kaw Lake.

Ottawa, $243,114, Northeast Oklahoma watershed.

Caddo, $9,002, training trip.

Meetings and events: The Tulsa County Republican Party is hosting an election watch party at Doubletree Warren Place, 6110 S. Yale Ave.

Tickets are $25 or $300 for tables. See the Tulsa County GOP Facebook page for reservations and details.

Tulsa County Democrats will host their watch party at the Agora Event Center, 1402 S. Peoria Ave. Check the Tulsa County Democratic Party’s Facebook page for more details.

The Tulsa Press Club, 415 S. Boston Ave., in the arcade of the Atlas Building, is hosting a nonpartisan watch party.

State Rep. Lonnie Sims of Jenks and State Senator Cody Rogers of Tulsa, neither of whom are on the Nov. 8 ballot, will speak at the Tulsa County Republican Men’s Club meeting. at 11:30 a.m. Wednesday at Oklahoma Joe’s, 6175 E. 61st Street.

—Randy Krehbiel Tulsa World

Ginnie Graham and Bob Doucette Ask: Why Didn’t Oklahoma Legislators Fund State Questions 780 and 781? Both groundbreaking criminal justice reform measures were approved by voters in 2016. Additionally, rural schools will be on the ballot in November. What do they mean for the identity of a community?