The state Senate has approved Caylee’s Law, a measure requiring parents or guardians to report that a child has gone missing within a 48-hour period.
Sen. Ralph Shortey, author of Senate Bill 1721, said the bill was motivated by the 2011 trial of Casey Anthony, who was convicted of lying to police regarding the disappearance of her daughter. SB 1721 creates a felony for failure to report a missing child within 48 hours.
“The Casey Anthony case had a significant impact on people across the country concerned with the value of human life,” said Shortey, R-Oklahoma City.
“The case also exposed a statutory loophole in laws relating to the reporting of missing children. Under this law, parents or guardians who lie to the police about the disappearance of a child will face real penalties.”
Shortey noted the state currently has few statutes relating to the reporting of disappearances.
“My hope is that this legislation can prevent similar tragedies from occurring in Oklahoma, and bring those who would harm children to justice,” he said.
Senate Bill 1721 now advances to the House for consideration.