- Illustration by John Eric Osborn
Like a teenager doing laundry for the first time stubbornly refusing to admit that dumping bleach on a load of colorful clothing was an accident, the Oklahoma County government has refused for decades to cop to the fact that the sewage-filled hellhole that serves as our county jail should just be torn down and rebuilt.
Instead, elected and appointed officials as well as the public are now pointing fingers at each other while an outrageous number of people (including many, many victims of our cash bail system) are forced to live in conditions that resemble a third-world gulag. Assuming they make it out alive.
Oklahoma County District Attorney David Prater, now in the final stretch of his last turn, is dedicating his time and attention to picking a fight with the jail trust tasked with overseeing the monstrosity.
“One purpose for calling an Oklahoma County grand jury is for it to investigate credible allegations that involve official corruption and/or official neglect that are alleged to have been committed by state and/or county officials,” Prater wrote in his application for a grand jury to investigate both the jail trust and the Pardon and Parole Board, NonDoc reported.
While Prater is not wrong that the “jail trust” are not to be trusted, as evidenced by the tireless work of community activists continually shining a light on all the inept if not downright corrupt shit the jail trust has tried to pull, it’s also worth noting that if he’s so concerned about the goings on with the jail, then maybe he should stop swinging for the fences when it comes to trumped up criminal charges and obscene punishments.
In turn, a group of citizens have now filed a petition seeking a grand jury to remove Prater himself for oppression and corruption in office. Turnabout is fair play.