Eyewitness Identification Reform
In 2019, Oklahoma passed a law requiring all law enforcement agencies in the state to adopt a detailed written policy on eyewitness identification procedures that includes, at minimum: 1) blind/blinded administration of lineups/photo arrays, 2) instructions to the eyewitness that the perpetrator may or may not be present, 3) selecting fillers that generally match the eyewitness description of the perpetrator and do not make the suspect noticeably stand out, 4) eliciting and documenting an eyewitness confidence statement after an identification is made, 5) a protocol guiding the use of show-ups procedures, including that show-ups should only be used when a suspect is detained within a reasonably short time frame following the offense, 6) a protocol for documenting eyewitness identification procedures. Effective: November 2019.
Recording of Interrogations
In 2019, Oklahoma passed a law that requires all law enforcement agencies in the state to adopt written policies requiring electronic recording of all custodial interrogations for homicide and rape cases. Effective: November 2019.
Post Conviction DNA
Testing Oklahoma passed a post-conviction DNA testing law May 24, 2013, making it the 50th state to do so. Effective: 2013.
State statute requires that criminal justice agencies retain and automatically preserve biological evidence from violent felony convictions for the length of incarceration of an individual. Effective: 2001.
Oklahoma's statute meets the best practices standards outlined by the NIST Technical Working Group on Biological Evidence Preservation.
A wrongfully convicted person is entitled to receive $175,000 for the entirety of his wrongful incarceration as long as he did not plead guilty and was imprisoned solely as a result of the wrongful conviction. Effective: 1978; Amended most recently: 2003.
In 2000, the Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals ruled in Dodd v. State that before jailhouse informant testimony is admissible, prosecutors must disclose certain information to the defense at least 10 days before trial, including: criminal history, any benefit that has been or may be offered, any other cases in which the informant testified or offered statements and any benefits received in those cases. Effective: 2000.
In 2020, the state enacted a law which codified these disclosure requirements for prosecutors. Additionally, the law requires district attorneys' offices to create a central index tracking each case in which a jailhouse informant testifies, the substance of the testimony, and the benefits provided. District attorneys must report this information to the Oklahoma District Attorneys Council, which will maintain a statewide tracking system and annually report to the legislature aggregate data on the total number of cases in the statewide index and the number added in the previous fiscal year. Effective: November 2020.