muskogee county

OKLAHOMA CITY – Calling it a disturbing example of government misconduct, the top attorney for ACLU Oklahoma said the organization has launched an in-depth investigation into the asset seizure practices of the Muskogee County Sheriff, District Attorney, and other law enforcement officials. Brady Henderson, Legal Director for ACLU Oklahoma, said his office is not only investigating the botched seizure of $53,000 belonging to a Christian band, a church, and an orphanage, but earlier seizures that appear riddled with improper practices and legal deficiencies. The most recent case involves Eh Wah, a 40-year-old Texas man who is a refugee from Burma. Wah, a U.S. citizen, wasRead More →


OKLAHOMA CITY — The Oklahoma branch of the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR-OK) and its Executive Director will receive the state’s top civil liberties award, officials the American Civil Liberties Union of Oklahoma said Friday. ACLU Oklahoma executive director Ryan Kiesel said Adam Soltani and CAIR-OK were chosen to receive the Angie Debo Award because of their efforts to protect the rights of Oklahoma’s Muslim community and to ensure the religious liberty rights of all Oklahomans. The award is named in honor of the writer, historian, and civil rights advocate Angie Debo, who relentlessly pursued justice in cooperation with the ACLU of Oklahoma during theRead More →


EDITORS NOTE: Click on the links for a copy of the lawsuit, McCraw v City of OKC, and its exhibits 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5.  OKLAHOMA CITY – Attorneys for the American Civil Liberties Union of Oklahoma and Legal Aid Services of Oklahoma filed a federal lawsuit today, seeking to overturn an Oklahoma City municipal ordinance that bans panhandling and other forms of activity from public medians. The lawsuit, filed in the federal district court for the Western District of Oklahoma, seeks to overturn an anti-panhandling ordinance that was adopted by the Oklahoma City Council in December. Written by Oklahoma City Councilwoman Meg Salyer the ordinanceRead More →


By Scott Carter EDITORS NOTE: On Nov. 19, 2015, the ACLU of Oklahoma filed an open records request with the city of Oklahoma City, seeking emails and other documents pertaining to the development and passage of an anti-panhandling ordinance written by Ward 6 councilwoman Meg Salyer. On Dec. 4, Assistant Municipal Counselor Richard Smith replied, asking that ACLU Oklahoma further “refine” its request. “I believe we could expedite the process, if you are willing to be more specific as to the type of record you are seeking,” Smith wrote. ACLU Oklahoma agreed to extra time for the request. In late January, Oklahoma City officials released 756 pages of documents relatingRead More →


OKLAHOMA CITY — An initiative petition that would have made abortion illegal was stopped by the Oklahoma Supreme Court Tuesday. The petition, filed on Jan. 27 by Thomas R. Hunter, sought to amend the Oklahoma Constitution, adding a new section that made abortion and some forms of contraception illegal. Tuesday the state’s high court said it wasn’t free to impose its own view of the law because the U.S. Supreme Court had previously ruled on the issue. “This court is duty bound by the United States and the Oklahoma Constitution to follow the mandates of the United States Supreme Court on matters of federal constitutional law,”Read More →


  OKLAHOMA CITY – A measure designed to protect Oklahomans from illegal surveillance by unmanned drones cleared the Oklahoma House of Representatives Tuesday. The bill, House Bill 2337, will ensure that new drone technology is properly regulated to protect due process and the privacy rights of citizens. The bill cleared the full House of Representatives Tuesday on a 56-40 vote. “We’re pleased that state lawmakers from both political parties took a stand for privacy rights,” said Ryan Kiesel executive director of ACLU Oklahoma. “The potential benefits of drones are already apparent. But drones are also a game changer when it comes to the government’s ability toRead More →

Rebekkah and Casey Newland

OKLAHOMA CITY — Rebekkah Newland and Jennifer Fleming will have their day in court. Tuesday, the Oklahoma Supreme Court ruled that both Newland and Fleming have standing to seek child custody hearings in district court. Newland and Fleming, along with a third plaintiff, Charlene Ramey, were each fighting district court rulings that denied them standing in child custody cases. All three women were non-biological mothers. Each woman had asked for a child custody hearing, but were denied by a district court. Last year, ACLU Oklahoma intervened in the cases, asking the Oklahoma Supreme Court to overturn the lower court’s ruling and to recognize each woman as a parent.Read More →