The conservative approach to criminal justice:
fighting crime, supporting victims, and protecting taxpayers.

Follow Oklahoma County’s Lead on Criminal Justice

| September 8, 2017

Oklahomans have a substantive opportunity to implement criminal justice reform. Oklahoma County has taken the initiative to uncover ways to reduce its bloated jail population through the creation of the Oklahoma County Criminal Justice Advisory Council. It’s an effective coalition of public and private sector entities working together to reform the system – which has universally been acknowledged as unsustainable. The council was created after the State Legislature failed to pass inmate-reduction and safety increasing measures this year. Last year, the Oklahoma City Chamber of Commerce commissioned the Vera Institute to conduct a study on criminal justice in Oklahoma County. The newly established council implements a few of the recommendations from that study.  Legislative leaders should pay attention to the results of these reforms because the impact is so closely tied to the business success of the state.

With U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions planning to visit the state in October to discuss criminal justice reform with the Oklahoma Sheriff’s Association, the coalition has an opportunity to showcase their reforms and show that reductions in jail population while increasing public safety and reducing the burden on taxpayers is possible.

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ANDREW SPENO previously worked as President of Media Strategies at Dry Design Group, a media consulting firm focusing on work with law firms, political candidates, lawmakers, and private companies. Andrew was the main news anchor at the Fox News affiliate in Oklahoma City from 2001 to 2012, and was the only main anchor in Oklahoma City to report almost daily, focusing on political and investigative reporting. His work has won more than 25 awards from the Associated Press, Society for Professional Journalists, and The Oklahoma Association of Broadcasters. He was also named on Oklahoma City’s “40 Under 40” list as one of the most influential people younger than 40 in 2003.

At Dry Design Group, Andrew trained attorneys in a wide range of practice areas to provide legal analysis for the media, served as press secretary for several Republican campaigns, and worked with State Senator Kyle Loveless and the Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs to introduce civil asset forfeiture reform to Oklahoma. Andrew uses his wide experience in politics and journalism to promote conservative criminal justice reform to both lawmakers and the general public. Andrew was a political science major at Illinois College, attended law school at Northern Illinois University, and did his graduate work in broadcast journalism at Virginia Commonwealth University.

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