Summer Thyme Creel received a reduced sentence after she underwent sterilization according to a judge of the suggestion.
(Oklahoma County Sheriff’s Office)
An Oklahoma woman convicted of using a fake cheque has received a reduced sentence after getting medical sterilized at the suggestion of the court.
Summer Thyme Creel, 34, a mother of seven children, was facing a maximum penalty sentenced to a year in federal prison for the crime. However, U. S. District Judge Stephen Friot showed leniency earlier this weekend, and sentenced to a year in federal prison and three years supervised release, The Oklahoman reported.
The decision came after Friot proposed Creel undergo the sterilization procedure last June. He said that the woman would be given a lesser sentenced after they followed his suggestion.
“They get a shorter sentence, because they made that decision,” Friot announced before the condemnation in Creel.
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According to reports, Friot stated the woman for the procedure that would prevent that Creel, an admitted drug user, from getting pregnant again after he acknowledged that they probably narcotics during her seven pregnancies.
“Comparing the dates of Mrs. Creel’s periods of regular use of crack cocaine and methamphetamine … with the dates of birth of her seven children, it seems very likely that a number of Mrs. Creel’s children were conceived, carried and born, while Mrs. Creel was a regular user of these illicit substances,” the judge wrote in his order.
Friot noted that Creel had waived her parental rights to six of her seven children.
Creel underwent the surgery in November.
Her lawyer, Brett Behenna. said her client openly chose to be sterilized.
“I spoke with her in detail about it, and she voluntarily wanted to do,” Behenna said.
Assistant district Attorney of the V. S. Jessica Perry said Creel interested in the procedure for the court, suggested it.
“Creel has not only a fundamental constitutional right to procreate … but she admits that she had an interest in an elective sterilization procedure for the court of 16 June,” Perry said.
Creel, who has a long arrest record, pleaded guilty last year to using a fake check at a Walmart in Moore, Okla. She was also arrested for theft.
The woman’s sentencing was delayed because they didn’t have to appear in court after she was jailed for another counterfeit check crime. The other time her conviction was delayed was because they tested positive for the use of the drug. Court records showed Creel tested positive for the use of methamphetamine in December.
“I’m sorry for the mistakes that I made,” Creel said.
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The Washington Post reported the judge’s sterilization order was met with disdain from women’s rights groups.
Eesha Pandit, a managing partner of the Centre for the promotion of Innovative Policies, said the case “harkens to a long legacy of coercive reproductive policies and practices.”
“For decades, sterilization was used as a way to control populations considered to be ‘undesirable’ immigrants, people of color, poor people, people with mental illnesses and disabilities,” Pandit said. “Tying Mrs. Creel’s to condemn her sterilization formalize the coercion that the threat of a heavier punishment is manipulative and dangerous, and aligned with a legacy of eugenic practices by the US.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.