Judge gives Mulhall man 7 years for lewd molestation, suspends the rest

Johnny Lee Graham was sentenced to 25 years on Thursday for the crime of lewd molestation against a child. 

Johnny Lee Graham was sentenced to 25 years for the charge of lewd molestation in which he inappropriately touched a child in 2018.

He was sentenced Thursday afternoon by Judge Stephen Kistler. 

Less than one day before he was set to go to trial in October, Graham entered into the blind plea. A blind plea means the judge has the ability to choose the sentence, versus a jury trial in which jurors suggest a punishment.

Although he was sentenced to 25 years, Graham will serve seven years in the Department of Corrections, and the other 18 will be supervised probation. Throughout the court process it was learned this was not the first time Graham had been accused of this. Four adults testified that they had been violated by Graham when they were children.

Royce Hobbs, attorney for Graham, argued since the four adults were women, that doesn't match up to the recent male victim of Graham. 

Kistler said in court he believes that sending Graham to prison is what is best for the public, due to his past offenses. Lewd molestation is an 85% crime, which means he will need to serve 85% of the time given before he is eligible for parole. 

Graham will also have to register as a sex offender upon his release from DOC. He waived his right to stay in the Payne County Jail for 10 days, so he will be transported to prison within the next 10 days.

He was remanded to the custody of the Payne County Sheriff's Office.

Payne County District Attorney Laura Austin Thomas released a statement regarding the sentencing.

“Even when children tell what is happening to them, the adults in their lives are not always willing to report an offender to law enforcement. Children cannot protect themselves from these predators," she wrote.

Thomas also said she appreciated the work of the Stillwater Police Department, and said a special thank you to Detective Mary Kellison with SPD. 

"We especially appreciate the efforts of Investigator Mary Kellison who helped locate and document the experiences of the previous victims,” Thomas wrote.

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