Oklahoma bills aim to strengthen punishment for domestic violence, assault
Two bills strengthening punishment for domestic violence in Oklahoma passed committee on Monday.
The two bills, authored by Dustin Roberts of Durant, would affect bonds and sentencing.
House Bill 1931 would make anyone arrested for violating a protective order, domestic abuse, stalking or harassment ineligible for a personal recognizance bond. The bill would also prohibit bond to be posted by organizations that help low-income suspects.
House Bill 1299 would make it so anyone convicted of assault, battery, or assault and battery with a dangerous weapon would be required to serve a minimum of 85 percent of the sentence imposed.
For example, anyone sentenced to 10 years in prison for assault would be required to serve at least eight and a half years in prison before being eligible for parole.
"I'm all for criminal justice reform that makes sense and lowers are incarceration rate but not at the expense of the safety of domestic violence or assault victims," Roberts said in a press release. "Those who perpetrate such crimes should not easily or quickly be released from our criminal justice system."
House Bill 1931 passed the committee by a unanimous vote and House Bill 1299 passed with a vote of seven to one.
The two bills are now eligible to be heard by the entire house.