Asst. Police Chief in Hollis, OK, Arrested on Rape Complaint

The Assistant Chief of Police for the Hollis Police Department has been arrested for allegedly having sex with an inmate at the Harmon County Jail.  According to Harmon County District Attorney John Wampler, Jayson Scott Vest, 34, was arrested last week after a female inmate told authorities that she and Vest had sex the night before.

According to his 28-year-old accuser, Vest took the woman from her cell to the Police Chief's office to allegedly question her about local drug activity.  She says that, while in the Chief's office, the two had sexual intercourse. The District Attorney's District 3 Drug Task Force investigated the allegations and arrested Vest on a sexual assault complaint.  

He was booked into the Jackson County Jail on $250,000 bond.  Harmon County D.A. John Wampler says that Vest is expected to be charged with rape of an Inmate, an offense which carries a potential prison sentence of one to 15 years.

At this time, reports have not indicated whether or not the sex between the Assistant Police Chief and the inmate was consensual; however, under Oklahoma law, certain individuals are legally unable to provide consent.  These people include:

  • Anyone under the age of 16
  • Anyone incapable "through mental illness or any other unsoundness of mind" of giving legal consent
  • Anyone who is unconscious
  • Anyone who is drugged by the perpetrator as a means of forcing the victim to consent
  • Anyone who believes, through the perpetrator's deceit, that the perpetrator is the victim's spouse
  • Anyone who is under the legal custody or supervisionof a state agency, a county, a municipality, or a political subdivision cannot legally consent to sex with an employee of the supervising or custodial agency.  This includes jail and prison inmates, wards of the state, those in DHS custody, and students.
First Degree Rape includes sex with a person under the age of 14 by a person over the age of 18; rape perpetrated through force, violence, or the threat of force or violence; rape by instrumentation resulting in great bodily harm; and rape by instrumentation of a victim under the age of 14.  Under §21-1115 of the Oklahoma criminal code,  

Rape in the First Degree is punishable by a minimum of 5 years in prison and a maximum penalty of death. All acts of rape which do not constitute First Degree Rape are considered Second Degree Rape.  Crimes such as apparently consensual sex with a person not legally able to provide that consent, often referred to as statutory rape, are categorized as Rape in the Second Degree. Second Degree Rape is punishable by 1-15 years in prison.

Both First and Second Degree Rape convictions require the convicted party to comply with the Oklahoma Sex Offender Registration Act.  As a registered sex offender, a person faces years--even a lifetime--of continued restrictions and mandates. If you have been accused of rape, whether in the first or second degree, it is important that you quickly find legal defense representation.  Visit our website to find a lawyer who can help you.

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