Sunday, February 6, 2011

Oklahoma City serial rapist gets 5 life without parole terms

John Earl Stephney Jr, 33, was sentenced to five life without parole terms for the rapes of five women by
Judge Kenneth Watson on Friday, January 28, 2011. Stepney's guilty plea to the charges did not help him one iota at sentencing.

The judge was told he attacked the first rape victim as she slept in her apartment Nov. 17, 2008. Next, he attacked a woman walking home from work late Dec. 7, 2008.

His third victim was the woman who was doing Christmas shopping the afternoon of Dec. 23, 2008, at Penn Square Mall. His fourth victim was attacked Jan. 5, 2009, as she was doing laundry at her apartment complex.

The fifth victim was attacked on Jan. 7, 2009, as she was vacuuming her car at a car wash. She told police the rapist said, “Maybe next time your husband will come wash your car.” Stepney was arrested the next day.

Stepney forced two victims to let him withdraw cash at ATMs from their bank accounts, according to the police reports and court records. In his attacks, he threatened the women with a BB gun that looked like a real handgun, prosecutors said.

The third victim read an impact statement to the court. “Things are still not back to my ‘normal.' I do not ever sleep well. I hear every little noise and I am jolted awake multiple times every night. Every time I have to walk to my car alone I have such pain and tightness in my chest is it almost unbearable.”

According to police reports, when Stephney saw his victim was looking away, he said “What are you doing not paying attention?" The victim said when she did look at him, he said “Don't look at me. Do you want a .45 bullet to your head?”

Judge Watson said that  if the victim had been his daughter, “I wonder if I could let the penitentiary take care of it rather than taking care of it myself.”

As for Stepney, he made no statement during sentencing, but in a pre sentence report he said "I made some bad decisions. I have wrecked lives including my own. I have always had a problem with pornography.”

He also said he was using drugs when “my crimes happened.” He said, “The drugs make you feel like you must have everything you want. They take over you. … All I can really ask for is to be forgiven.”

Stepney's bad decisions have exacted a heavy price on his life and the lives of his victims. Forgiveness will not come from the people of Oklahoma, but perhaps, one day, may come from God .

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