12:01, February 08 295 0 abajournal.com

2018-02-08 12:01:05
Habitual drug user takes federal judge’s hint and gets sterilized before sentencing

Summer Thyme Creel, 34, is scheduled to be sentenced Thursday in Oklahoma City after heeding the suggestion by Senior U.S. District Judge Stephen Friot, report NewsOK and the Washington Post.

“By virtue of a series of relationships with various sires over approximately the last 14 years, Ms. Creel has given birth to seven children out of wedlock,” Friot wrote in a June 16 order delaying her sentencing because she was back in jail on other charges. She relinquished parental rights to six of the children after a state investigation found she failed to protect them from harm, Friot said.

Comparing the dates of Creel’s use of crack cocaine with the birth dates of her children, “it appears highly likely that some of Ms. Creel’s children were conceived, carried and born while Ms. Creel was a habitual user of these illicit substances,” Friot wrote. She also recently tested positive for methamphetamine, he said.

At her sentencing, “Ms. Creel may, if (and only if) she chooses to do so, present medical evidence to the court establishing that she has been rendered incapable of procreation,” Friot wrote.

According to the Post, Creel “took the hint” and underwent the procedure.

Creel’s lawyer, W. Brett Behenna, told the Post that Friot read the order to him and the prosecutors in chambers.

“It is my belief,” Behenna told the Post, “that when I discussed it with Summer, she wanted to do it, 100 percent. No coercion, no force.”

Assistant U.S. Attorney Jessica Perry argued the sterilization decision should not be a factor in sentencing because Creel already had an interest in the procedure and because she has “a fundamental constitutional right to procreate.”