Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73105
For Immediate Release: September 16, 2010
Sen. Don Barrington
Sen. Barrington Honored for Legislation
to Help Solve Cold Cases
State Sen. Don
Barrington, R-Lawton, has been chosen to receive the first annual
“Shawn Beaty Award” for legislation aimed at helping
solve cold cases. The award, given by the Cold Case Investigative
Research Institute (CCIRI), will be presented during a ceremony
at Bauder College in Atlanta, Georgia, October 7, 2010, and is named
for Oklahoma homicide victim Shawn Beaty.
Barrington was principal Senate author of HB 3294 which enables
Oklahoma law enforcement to take advantage of outside resources
available for investigating unsolved crimes.
“We’ve worked to ensure law enforcement in Oklahoma
can fully utilize important forensic tools such as DNA and other
types of crime scene evidence,” Barrington said. “This
new law will enable us to take advantage of additional programs
and organizations to help us solve cold cases.”
CCIRI is dedicated to solving cold cases through a cooperative
effort involving Auburn Montgomery, Bauder College and Falkner University,
along with current former law enforcement agents, including agents
with the FBI. Students work with criminal justice experts as they
investigate unsolved crimes. Some of the high profile cases the
Institute has worked on include the homicides of Washington D.C.
intern Chandra Levy and the disappearance of college student Natalee
Holloway in Aruba.
Oklahoman Jerry Beaty contacted CCIRI hoping they could help solve
his wife’s murder. More than five years ago, Shawn Beaty was
found dead from smoke inhalation after their Bryan County home was
intentionally set on fire. The organization agreed to investigate
the cold case.
“Unfortunately, Mr. Beaty was told that current state law
barred the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation from releasing
files to the Cold Case Investigative Research Institute,”
Barrington said. “HB 3294 cleared the way for the OSBI to
release information to other agencies and groups outside law enforcement
such as CCIRI in an effort to solve cold cases.”
Barrington, Chairman of the Senate Public Safety and Homeland Security
Committee, will share the honor with Gov. Henry, Representative
Sue Tibbs and Jerry Beaty.
For more information, contact:
Sen. Barrington: (405) 521-5563