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Ron O'Brien Says Changes In Reagan Tokes Bill Could Have Happened Earlier

Franklin County Prosecutor Ron O'Brien talks to reporters in 2012.
Karen Kasler
Ohio Public Radio
Franklin County Prosecutor Ron O'Brien talks to reporters in 2012.

The prosecutor involved in the case of the kidnapping, rape and murder of an Ohio State student in February is pleased with the introduction of legislation named for her. But he thinks changes relating to release and monitoring of accused criminals could have happened sooner.

Franklin County Prosecutor Ron O’Brien says he fully supports the Reagan Tokes Act, which would allow for sentences to be lengthened for violent inmates and more rules on GPS monitoring of those who are released.

"It is reprehensible in the wake of this flawed system that violencel ike this happens time and time again, resulting in the loss of innocent, law-abiding citizens' lives that have so much positive to offer this world like Reagan did," said Lisa Tokes, Reagan's mother.

The bill, which was unveiled on Wednesday by legislators and Tokes' family, would require convicted first- and second-degree felons to be given "indeterminate sentences" with no definite end date. And it would place further restrictions on where newly-released inmates with GPS monitors can go.

But O’Brien notes that some of these ideas were agreed to by a criminal code study committee of lawmakers and other experts, but those recommendations haven’t been considered as legislation yet.

“I think sometimes it takes a tragedy for the need to be sharply in focus of people in this building and take action,” O'Brien said.

Reagan Tokes’ accused killer, Brian Golsby, was released from prison three months before her death. He’s pleaded not guilty, but police say his GPS ankle monitor and DNA on a cigarette shows he was in the park where her body was found.