Legislation offers churches protection

| February 15, 2012

Legislation giving churches the same protection against violent crimes as homeowners and businesses passed the House Judiciary Committee Tuesday.

Rep. Mike Ritze (R-Broken Arrow) authored House Bill 2988, which will expand the legal authority of churches to protect themselves in violent situations.

“We’ve had numerous pastors, churches, places of worship over the last couple of years at least, that have been taken advantage of and accosted, beat up, threatened to bomb, physically struck, robbed and killed,” Ritze said.

Ritze specifically mentioned the 2009 murder of Pastor Carol Daniels at Christ Holy Sanctified Church in Anadarko and the 2005 assault on Pastor Billy Joe Daugherty at Victory Christian Center in Tulsa.

“We have, under the statute title 21 section 1289.25, what we call the stand your ground, make my day, or castle law which states, if you’re in your home or residence you can defend yourself with whatever necessary force, if you have a perceived threat,” he said.

“This will be a clarification of the law,” Ritze said. “The law basically states that if there is a perceived threat you can take deadly force.”

The original castle law was enacted in Oklahoma in 1987. It has since been amended to include businesses and vehicles. With this further expansion, the law would include churches and places of worship.



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Category: Church Security

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