OKLAHOMA CITY– In the wake of the Betty Shelby trial, which revealed serious incidents of misconduct by multiple members of the Tulsa Police Department (TPD), as well as the news that Officer Shelby will remain a member of the TPD, the ACLU of Oklahoma stands in solidarity with the family and friends of Terence Crutcher, as well as the larger community, as we continue to lament his horrific death at the hands of law enforcement.  We are  calling today for immediate, concrete action to address the Department’s failure to maintain the minimal ethical and policy standards required to protect the citizens of Tulsa. TPD’s leadRead More →

OKLAHOMA CITY: In response to the Republican Platform Caucus proposal to threaten 82,000 children with deportation, the ACLU of Oklahoma issued the following statement: The following is attributable to Ryan Kiesel, Executive Director:   “The Republican Platform Caucus is using cheap, tired tactics of political distraction in an attempt to create confusion about Oklahoma’s true problem—a failing Legislature. Indeed, the Oklahoma Legislature is a far greater threat to the safety and prosperity of Oklahomans than any child that may have entered this Nation from one of our borders. This proposal might be laughable if it weren’t made at the expense of real human beings, commonRead More →

In response to the news that the owner and the manager of The Friendly Market, Robert Cox and Stephen Tyler Holman, have been acquitted of all charges regarding the sale of legal glass pipes out of their Norman, OK shop, The ACLU of Oklahoma has issued the following statement. The following statement is attributable to Ryan Kiesel, Executive Director: “It is unconscionable that the Cleveland County District Attorney would spend a single penny of taxpayer resources on such a monumental waste of time as to prosecute a business owner and manager who never broke any law. The people of Oklahoma ostensibly elect their district attorneysRead More →

Today, the Oklahoma Death Penalty Review Commission released their findings and recommendations on Oklahoma’s capital punishment system. The ACLU of Oklahoma applauds this courageous report and urges policymakers to consider the recommendations with the speed and seriousness they command. The Oklahoma Death Penalty Review Commission’s findings and recommendations should serve as a blueprint for Oklahoma policy makers as they grapple with the failures of Oklahoma’s entire criminal justice system, not just those in capital cases. Oklahoma lawmakers would be wise to closely follow the thoughtful, evidence based recommendations by the Commission. Doing so might begin to restore dwindling confidence in all criminal prosecutions, but itRead More →

This week a spokesperson for the Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs (OBNDD), Mark Woodard, made a series of outrageous claims in conversation with The Edmond Sun that marijuana legalization in Colorado has caused a spike in related criminal activity and overdoses. While on its face it is laughable, these demonstrably false claims are an unsettling example of the OBNDD once again advancing an agenda that is completely disconnected from a mature understanding of drugs and drug policy. OBNDD leadership has a clear motive for protecting this reprehensible and unsustainable system. It should be no surprise that the soldiers in the war on drugsRead More →