In Case You Missed It: Updates on April Wilkens

poster made for capitol day

Here’s a recap of what Free April Wilkens advocates and April Wilkens herself have been up to!

The Oklahoma Survivor Justice Coalition went to the capitol last week, organized by Oklahoma Appleseed Center for Law & Justice in support of House Bill 1639, a bill authored by Representative Toni Hasenbeck (R). This new legsilation, if passed, could help women like April in Oklahoma. The bill UNANIMOUSLY passed out of the House Judiciary – Criminal committee, chaired by Rande Worthen, on Wednesday (you should be able to view a recording here).

The final day at the capitol, Thursday, was a time of not only reaching out to legislators, but carrying the voices of criminalized survivors into offices – including April’s (click this link to hear their voices/stories). For a recap of the events, see these posts:

April’s Op-ed was published and Podcast updates: Right before we were set to go to the capitol, April was published in The Oklahoman. Later, a version ran in USA Today, the Daily Caller, and other outlets. The wide range of outlets hopefully shows this is a bipartisan issue. Also before going to the capitol, Panic Button podcast hosts Colleen McCarty and Leslie Briggs released an update episode and teased season 2!

For a recap/refresher on season 1’s final episode, see this post from April’s niece.

Learn more about HB 1639 in these articles/news stories:Ā 

Take action:Ā 

Oklahoma Appleseed has made it easy to contact your Oklahoma legislators in support of HB 1639. Use their action network portal to write them.

Other news:
  • Tomorrow, Tuesday, March 7th, is the 1 year anniversary of April’s latest parole jacket being denied by the Oklahoma Pardon and Parole Board. They didn’t even read all the letters we collected for her. They didn’t even give her a chance to speak for herself. The appeals, parole, and commutation process have failed April. That’s why we’re turning to legislation and supporting HB 1639.
  • Also tomorrow, another criminalized survivor is up for her chance for freedom. Lisa Rae Moss has made it to a Stage II commutation hearing. That’s a big deal in and of itself in Oklahoma. But, even if she gets the votes tomorrow, Governor Kevin Stitt will have to sign off on it. We are watching how the Oklahoma Pardon and Parole Board votes on this case for sure! You should be able to watch live online. Learn more about Lisa’s case here. Many will be in-person to witness the vote tomorrow, wearing black.
April’s own voice:Ā 
As mentioned above, we carried April and other womens’ voices to the capitol, pre-recorded on headphones. Here is her testimony:
In Case You Missed It: Updates on April Wilkens

Friday Channel 8 story from Brenna Rose: “‘Very discouraging’: AG Drummond on domestic violence in Oklahoma”

Watch the full story here.

Friday Channel 8 story from Brenna Rose: “‘Very discouraging’: AG Drummond on domestic violence in Oklahoma”

STATE OF OKLAHOMA’S MOTION FOR AN EXTENSION OF TIME TO RESPOND PETITIONER’S “APPLICATION FOR POST-CONVICTION RELIEF”

Find the original document here.

OCR file:

State of Oklahoma’s motion for an extension of time to respond 2022:

STATE OF OKLAHOMA’S MOTION FOR AN EXTENSION OF TIME TO RESPOND PETITIONER’S “APPLICATION FOR POST-CONVICTION RELIEF”

View a recording of The Ladies of Hope Ministries panel discussion for ‘Survived & Criminalized’ here

Colleen McCarty of the Oklahoma Appleseed Center for Law and Justice speaks about April Wilkens on this panel:

View a recording of The Ladies of Hope Ministries panel discussion for ‘Survived & Criminalized’ here

BONUS EPISODE: Panic Button: The April Wilkens Case

Listen here.

 

 

BONUS EPISODE: Panic Button: The April Wilkens Case

NEW: Post Conviction Relief filed on behalf of April Wilkens

NEW: Post Conviction Relief filed on behalf of April Wilkens

Next Saturday: An immersive podcast experience for Panic Button: The April Wilkens Case at the Center for Public Secrets

Join us for an immersive podcast experience to celebrate the completion of Season One of Panic Button: The April Wilkens Case. The podcast tells the story of April Wilkens, a domestic violence survivor serving LIFE in an Oklahoma Prison, and two attorneys’ journey to expose the truth about her conviction so we can finally bring her home.
For the first time in 25 years, the harrowing experience April Wilkens endured at the hands of her ex-fiance, Terry Carlton, and the heart-breaking crusade against her led by former Tulsa County DA Tim Harris that followed, are brought to the light. You’ll see the exhibits from April’s trial up close, and hear excerpts from the podcast that tackles the question of how a victim of domestic violence can become a criminal in the eyes of the law.
Join hosts Leslie Briggs and Colleen McCarty, as well as licensed master social worker and Battered Womens’ Syndrome Expert, Molly Bryant, and others to learn about how Oklahoma’s justice system treats criminalized abuse survivors–and what you can do about it.

Learn how to RSVP here: https://fb.me/e/2ayoYPE3x

Next Saturday: An immersive podcast experience for Panic Button: The April Wilkens Case at the Center for Public Secrets