What is the Oklahoma Violent Offender Registry?

by OKCDefenseLaw on July 11, 2013

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In 2003, 89-year-old Mary Rippy was brutally strangled by her neighbor, Tommy Standefer—a violent felon with convictions for first degree manslaughter and felony possession of a firearm. The elderly woman did not know about Standefer’s criminal past and didn’t suspect the violence brewing nearby.

In 2004, the Oklahoma legislature enacted the Mary Rippy Violent Crime Offenders Registration Act (57 O.S. § 591 – 599.1). This law, much like the Oklahoma Sex Offenders Registration Act, requires those convicted of specified crimes to register their addresses with the Department of Corrections and local law enforcement. The Act also allows local law enforcement agencies to notify the community about the residency of violent offenders. Typically, community notification is conducted via the Oklahoma Violent Offender Registry website.

This is another example of Oklahoma going far beyond the means necessary to protect the public by exploiting the private and personal information of its citizens. Yes, the individuals on the violent offender registry more often than not have committed very serious offenses, but the lengths that local law enforcement may go to in order to notify residents of individuals on the registry can be quite excessive at times. Though many of the individuals on the violent offender  registry have violated an Oklahoma law, that in no way implies that their personal identification information should be spread throughout the state. The Oklahoma Department of Corrections already has a registry of every offender in the state, and many argue that such a database should be enough.

However, not all violent offenders are required to register. The Mary Rippy Violent Crime Offenders Registration Act specifies certain crimes for which conviction requires registration:

·    First degree murder
·    Second degree murder
·    First degree manslaughter
·    Shooting with intent to kill
·    Using a vehicle to facilitate discharge a weapon
·    Assault, battery, or assault and battery with a deadly weapon
·    Assault, battery, or assault and battery likely to produce death or great bodily harm
·    Assault with intent to kill
·    Bombing

In some cases, as determined by the judge at a defendant’s sentencing, conviction for certain types of abuse may be subject to the provisions of the Violent Crime Offenders Registration Act. At the discretion of the judge, convictions for child abuse or neglect, caretaker abuse or neglect, and child endangerment may be subject to registration under the following circumstances:

·    The abuse resulted in “physical pain, injury, sexual abuse, sexual exploitation, unreasonable restraint or confinement, or mental anguish to the victim, or
·    deprivation of nutrition, clothing, shelter, health care, or other care or services which caused serious physical or mental injury to the victim, and
·    the facts or nature of the offense warrant registration for public disclosure and protection of victims.” (57 O.S. § 593)

Domestic crimes and abuse are not automatically subject to Violent Offender Registration requirements,  but registration may be ordered if the above conditions are met.
Violent offenders subject to the terms of the Mary Rippy Violent Crime Offenders Registration Act must remain on the registry for a period of 10 years after completion of any sentence, including incarceration in jail or prison, probation or parole, and deferred sentencing. If, however, a person is convicted of a second or subsequent offense of any registry crimes, he or she is considered a habitual violent offender and must register for life. For this reason, it is extremely important to have a qualified and experienced criminal defense attorney defending you if and when you are charged with a violent crime in Oklahoma.

Violation of the provisions of the Mary Rippy Violent Crime Offenders Registration Act or failure to register as an Oklahoma Violent Offender is a felony punishable by a maximum of five years in prison and a fine of up to $5,000.

Mr. Banner began his studies at the University of Oklahoma and received his Bachelors of Arts, with Academic Distinction, in Philosophy. As a senior at OU, Adam graduated in the top 10% of his class and was named to the Golden Key International Honour Society. Adam attended the Oklahoma City University School of Law as a merit scholar, where he earned his Juris Doctorate Magna Cum Laude, and graduated number ten overall in his class. While at OCU Law, Adam established himself as one of the school’s top scholars, earning various awards and distinctions including: Faculty Honor Roll, Dean's List, Staff Member for the Oklahoma City University Law Review, numerous Cali awards for earning top honors in his courses (including Criminal Law and Appellate Research and Writing), and awards from many of the university's section groups. During law school, Adam interned at the Oklahoma County Public Defender’s Office for three years, where he gained invaluable courtroom experience. At the Public Defender’s Office, Adam aided in the representation of hundreds of individuals in the misdemeanor, felony, and capital punishment divisions. Adam has continued that trend in private practice, earning favorable results for his clients through both jury trials and motion hearings. Moreover, he is recognized by the National Trial Lawyers as earning a place among the Top 100 Trial Lawyers. Aside from his courtroom experience, Adam is also an accomplished appellate attorney, having drafted various high-profile Oklahoma appeals. Adam is a member of the Oklahoma Bar Association, the Oklahoma County Bar Association, the Federal Bar Association, the American Bar Association, the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, and the Oklahoma Criminal Defense Lawyers Association. He is licensed to practice in the Supreme Court of Oklahoma and all inferior Oklahoma State courts, the United States District Court for the Western District of Oklahoma, the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Oklahoma, the United States District Court for the Northern District of Oklahoma, and the United States Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit.

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