A Republican lawmaker is pushing to add Oklahoma to the list of states in which so-called chemical castration is an option for certain sex offenders.
State representative Rick West, a first-term lawmaker from Heavener, said he filed the bill at the request of a constituent and that he fully intends to push for its passage. It is likely to face strong opposition, even in a conservative state.
If approved, Oklahoma would join at least seven other states that have laws allowing courts to order chemical treatments that reduce male testosterone for certain sex offenders.
Experts say the punishment is rarely carried out and one described it as a “half fantasy” version of criminal justice.
West said: “When I knocked on that guy’s door when I was campaigning, he said: ‘I’ll vote for you if you’ll run this bill.’”
West, who has also introduced a measure that would allow tobacco back inside state prisons, said he is confident his constituents will support efforts to prevent sex crimes, especially against children.
Under the bill , anyone convicted of a sexually violent offense could be required as a condition of release to take the drugs designed to reduce a male offender’s testosterone and sexual libido. A second offense would require the treatment unless a court determined it would not be effective.