A police department in Oklahoma on Monday released body camera footage of former State Senator Ralph Shortey caught in a hotel room with an underage boy, days after he pleaded guilty to child prostitution and pornography charges.
The Republican lawmaker was caught in a seedy motel room with a 17-year-old boy back in March. Senator Ralph Shortey, 35, pleaded guilty to a federal charge of child sex trafficking last week. The married father-of-3 admitted offering the boy cash in exchange for “sexual stuff”.
The video footage shows the two-term senator in the Super 8 motel room wearing a white t-shirt with the Bible verse Ephesians 5:22 — which urges wives to submit to their husbands — and the words “now go make me a sandwich” printed on the front.
The footage showed police knocking on the door of a room occupied by Shortey — a Republican who served as President Trump’s Oklahoma campaign chair — and the underage male. Police said they went to the room after receiving a welfare check call placed by the teen boy’s father. The senator appeared nervous in the video.
“I’m just trying to have a good evening,” he reportedly told police. Shortey said he didn’t know the boy was only 17. “Can you show me that he’s only 17?” he asked the officers.
The lawmaker initially claimed he was the teen’s mentor, and that they were “just hanging out and talking about life and stuff. I’m trying to help him get his life on track”. A police officer then told him, “Whatever you’re doing, it’s a bad (expletive) idea.”
“Does that make sense to you? Getting high, with a young kid, is a bad idea. No matter if they’re 17 or 20. It’s a bad idea,” the officer told Shortey in the video.
The officers said they smelled marijuana and later discovered a small amount of it in the room along with condoms and lotion found in a backpack that belonged to Shortey. Shortey was not arrested that night, but an ensuing investigation led to three counts of child pornography charges that were later dropped in the plea deal.
Watch the video below.