Jan, 24, 2011
I am thankful for the good folks who voted out Glen Bud Smithson.
His successor seems to be getting off on the right foot!
Contact: State Rep. John Bennett
Capitol: (405) 557-7315
OKLAHOMA CITY (January 21, 2011) – Transportation Security Administration employees who exploit their power over citizens could face significant state penalties under legislation filed by state Rep. John Bennett.
“It seems every day you hear a new story about a TSA employee being overly aggressive when conducting ‘pat-downs’ of citizens who decline to go through the full-body scan at the airport,” said Bennett, R-Sallisaw. “In some cases, it appears those pat-downs cross the line into sexual harassment or assault, something we should not tolerate, especially when teenagers are the target.
“My legislation will send a clear message that there will be serious consequences for anyone who takes advantage of their authority to grope or fondle children.”
House Bill 1245 would allow federal employees and contractors working for the TSA to face felony charges if they “touch, maul, or feel the body or private parts of any child” younger than 16 “in any lewd or lascivious manner.”
Those convicted would face up to 25 years in prison based on the age of the child.
The legislation would also allow for civil actions to be pursued against any TSA official accused of sexual battery.
The bill also adds an extra layer of protection by allowing citizens the right to request that local police be present when pat-downs are conducted to ensure a TSA employee does not abuse his or her power.
“Parents’ most important responsibility is the protection of their children,” Bennett said. “This legislation will help parents in that role by reducing the ability of any rouge TSA agent to mistreat a child.”