Opinion| Former Oklahoma state Sen. Jonathan Nichols, 53, was found dead inside his home in Norman on Wednesday night from an apparent gunshot wound(s).
— KATV News (@KATVNews) June 6, 2019
His death comes just one day after former Arkansas state Sen. Linda Collins-Smith, 56, was found outside of her home, shot fatally, in Pocahontas on Tuesday. Police are investigating her death as a homicide.
Both Nichols and Collins-Smith were Republicans.
Once is random happenstance. Twice is a coincidence. Three times is a trend. There may be reason to look for a trend.
Nichols served in the Oklahoma state senate for 12 years from 2001-2013 winning re-election by ever larger margins.
There was a good reason for that. The man who replaced him from District 15, Rob Standridge, characterized Nichols as “… the most brilliant political and legal mind in the oklahoma state legislature.”
When we learned of the murder of Linda Collins-Smith yesterday we made note of her reported crusade against the corrupt & scandal filled Arkansas Department of Human Services (ARDHS).
It appears that Nichols was an equally honest legislator with a history of similarly working to protect children who can’t protect themselves.
In 2005 State Senator Jonathan Nichols was presented with the “Crime Fighter Award” from the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN). The RAINN Crime Fighter Award is a national honor bestowed on individuals for leadership in fighting crime and helping victims.
According to the certificate of award, Senator Nichols (R-Norman) was selected for his work on introducing and enacting Senate Bill 646 which requires all convicted felons in Oklahoma to submit DNA samples for the criminal DNA database system.
“It is a privilege to be able to do work that I believe in and to be honored for doing that work is humbling,” said Senator Nichols, a former prosecutor. “But there is more to be done. I will continue working to pass legislation that protects children and our communities and make sure that these predators are taken off the streets and locked up in prison.”
In 2006, State Senator Jay Paul Gumm thanked Senator Jonathan Nichols for working with him to ensure a bill outlining sentencing options for child abusers was the strongest bill possible.
The bill aimed at creating a safer Oklahoma by giving juries in Oklahoma the option of sentencing repeat child molesters to life without parole or the death penalty.
In 2008, Nichols, at the behest of Sen. James A. Williamson, amended one of his bills to close a loophole defining first-degree rape. At the time Nichols said:
As a former prosecutor, and father of two daughters, I am thankful that Senator Williamson has identified and is closing this terrible loophole in the laws against rape. Rape committed by use of sedatives or any such drugs should absolutely be first-degree rape and carry the maximum punishment.
We all have heard rumors that a very prominent political couple from Arkansas may be up to their eyeballs in child trafficking, and Arkansas and Oklahoma lie side-by-side, with a distance of under 500 miles between Pocahontas, Ark., and Norman, Okla., where the deaths occurred.
With the Mueller investigation over, and an honest attorney general finally in place, President Trump’s Executive Order of December 20, 2017, Executive Order Blocking the Property of Persons Involved in Serious Human Rights Abuse or Corruption, may finally be being enforced.
That would require investigations, quiet investigations conducted without the glare of the bright lights of a corrupt, swamp-protecting, media.
We want to be careful to not make any definitive statements about the connection between the murders of Sens. Collins-Smith and Nichols, if there even is a connection.
That’s what investigations are for. Transparent investigations.