Married Father And Former Oklahoma State Senator Caught By Police In Hotel Room With A 17-Year-Old Boy
A police body cam video released Monday shows the moment former Oklahoma Sen. Ralph Shortey was caught in a hotel room with an underage boy. The video released by Moore Police Department came weeks after the 35-year-old pleaded guilty to child prostitution and pornography charges.
Police arrived at the motel room after the boy's family raised concerns. The footage, which was shot in March, shows police knocking on the door of a room occupied by Shortey. Shortey answered the door wearing a T-shirt, printed with the bible verse Ephesians 5:22 — which called for women to "submit to their husbands" — in addition to the phrase, "now go make me a sandwich."
"What we are worried about is you having a juvenile in there. Yeah, this one," a police told Shortey, to which he replied: "We were just hanging out, talking about life and stuff. We’ve been talking for a few months about. Tomorrow he told me he was going to get his GED. Couldn’t graduate high school and was trying to get his life on track."
Eventually, police arrested Shortey and accused him of hiring the 17-year-old for sex. During a search of the motel room, police found a container labeled "Colorado Retail Marijuana" in the room and an "open box of condoms" inside a backpack, a report said.
A search of the teenager’s tablet computer uncovered a series of sexually explicit exchanges between him and Shortey in which the married father-of-four referred to the teen as "baby boy" and offered him cash in exchange for "sexual stuff."
The federal indictment against Shortey mentions that he created a Craigslist account under a fake name where he requested anyone responding to his ads communicate with him via Kik, a social media application that allows users to send photos, videos, and text messages. The indictment also stated that Shortey used his email account to transfer a video titled "051st Time Sex Videos."
Shortey, in a plea deal last month, wrote: "It is in my best interest and in the best interest of my family." Federal prosecutors agreed to drop three counts of child pornography against Shortey in exchange for his guilty plea.
Shortey’s attorney Ed Blau said he was happy with the outcome of the plea deal.
"After looking at all the evidence and case law and statutes and everything else, we just felt that this would give him the best opportunity to come out with the best outcome possible. It would’ve been an extraordinarily difficult case to win a trial."
Shortey, who was in custody awaiting sentencing, could be sentenced to life imprisonment and face a maximum fine of $250,000.
Elected to the state senate in 2010, Shortey made headlines in 2012 when he wrote a bill to ban the use of aborted human fetuses in food, even though he was not aware of any company that used such a practice.