Oklahoma State Senator Charged With Engaging In Child Prostitution
OKLAHOMA (KFSM) — An Oklahoma state senator turned himself in on Thursday (March 16) after he was charged with engaging in child prostitution.
Ralph Shortey, 35, was charged with engaging in child prostitution, engaging in prostitution within 1,000 feet of a church, and transporting a minor for prostitution. Cleveland County District Attorney Greg Mashburn filed the charges against Shortey on Thursday.
The Moore Police Department released a redacted report after police found Shortey and a 17-year-old in a hotel room on Thursday, March 9, reported affiliate KFOR.
Shortey told authorities that “he was just there to hang out with his friend,” the report states. The friend is a 17-year-old boy whose parents told police “has a history of soliciting himself on Craigslist for sexual conduct.”
Inside a backpack, police said they found an open box of condoms inside a backpack in the room, the report states. The boy apparently told his girlfriend earlier that “he was going to get paid tonight.”
The Republican senator is involved with teens on a regular basis through the YMCA Youth in government program, and he is a senior staffer at Boys State.
On Wednesday, the Oklahoma state senate passed a unanimous resolution to suspend Shortey from all committees and remove his name from all legislation, KFOR reported. He no longer has access to his parking lot and must return all state property in his possession.
An arrest warrant was issued for Shortey on Thursday after the charges were filed.
Shortey, who is married and has three children, turned himself in to Cleveland County authorities on Thursday afternoon.
To read more about the investigation on our sister station KFOR’s website, click here.