Former Colleagues, Governor, Call For Shortey’s Resignation Amid Investigation

Thursday, March 16th 2017, 10:23 pm
By: Emory Bryan

State Senator Ralph Shortey was in and out of jail in two hours after being charged, booked and bonded out on three different felonies, including child prostitution.

Now, more leaders, including the governor, lieutenant governor and the Oklahoma Democratic Party are calling on him to resign.

Shortey has not responded to the growing chorus of people asking for his resignation, and the legislature hasn't publicly said if they intend to kick him out.

Thursday, the state senator turned himself in at the Cleveland County Jail. He didn't say anything as he was going in to answer the charges, and shortly afterward was released on $100,000 bond.

3/16/2017 Related Story: Sen. Shortey Turns Self In At Cleveland County Jail

The investigation triggered a quick rebuke from the State Senate, which stripped him of all privileges - everything except his seat.

Senate leaders said they've asked for more security but would not confirm reports they've told Shortey he would not be allowed in the building.

Shortey is facing three felony charges.

Cleveland County Assistant District Attorney Susan Caswell said, “The first one soliciting a minor to commit an act of prostitution, the second one is transporting him for the same thing and the third one is soliciting within 1,000 feet of a church.”

Police in Moore went to a Super 8 Motel after the father of a 17-year-old boy told them his son was inside with an adult, possibly engaged in prostitution.

Court records say police encountered Shortey and the boy smoking marijuana in a room.

At the legislature, Shortey's former colleagues - all the way up to the governor - are asking him to resign.

He could follow in the footsteps of Broken Arrow Representative Dan Kirby who resigned in a sexual harassment scandal that emerged at the beginning of this session.

But Shortey's problems are just beginning - with court dates ahead for the disgraced lawmaker.

The child involved is 17 years old and told police he offered himself for prostitution through Craigslist.

3/16/2017 Related Story: Sen. Shortey's Business Partner, Victim's Father React To Charges

He was not arrested and not taken into state custody.

Even though the boy in the case is of legal age to consent to sex, police said the encounter breaks the law because they say Shortey offered money in exchange for sex acts.

It is considered child prostitution because the boy is under 18 years old.