A law to ensure child predators will spend more time behind bars is on its way to Gov. Brad Henry. The full Senate voted 45-2 in favor of House Bill 1816 on Thursday. The measure, also known as “Jessica’s Law” is named for 9-year-old Jessica Lunsford. The Florida girl was kidnapped and murdered in 2005 by a registered sex offender who lived near her family home.
Sen. Todd Lamb, Senate author of HB 1816, said the legislation targets predators who seek out children younger than 12.
“Currently, there is no minimum sentence for these child molesters,” said Lamb, R-Edmond. “HB 1816 calls for a minimum 25 years in prison for anyone convicted of sexually abusing or exploiting a child under 12. The longer these monsters are behind bars, the safer our children will be.”
Rep. David Dank, House author of the bill, was pleased that the measure had cleared its final legislative hurdle.
"I am delighted the Senate passed'Jessica's Law' by such a large margin," said Dank, R-Oklahoma City. "Ifeel confident Governor Henry willsupport this legislation that is so important to the safetyand well-being of our youngsters."