The City Commission voted to amend several city ordinances during their meeting Monday evening. All ordinances amended are contained in the Code of Ordinances of the City of Ardmore; Chapter 19 Entitled Offenses and Miscellaneous Provisions. City Manager J.D. Spohn explained the reasons behind the suggested changes prior to the commissioners votes.
“These ordinances are the result of our attorney reviewing a couple items we asked him to take a look at,” Spohn said. “He also found some more that were either unconstitutional or unenforceable.”
One set of ordinances repealed deals directly with illicit sexual relations, immoral movies and shows, indecent exposure, indecency, lewd conduct, solicitation and vagrancy.
“This is one that was unenforceable and was probably from maybe the 1930s or 1940s,” Spohn said. “Our attorney recommends repeal.”
Prior to repeal, illicit sexual conduct was defined as “sexual intercourse with any person other than one’s lawful husband or wife.” The indecent exposure section made it unlawful for “any person to appear in any public place in the city in a state of nudity or in any offensive, indecent or lewd dress; or to make an indecent public exposure of his or her person.”
Another section amended pertains to the offense of larceny and larceny from a retailer or wholesaler.
“We had some issues with our larceny ordinance,” Spohn said. “(Asst. Chief of Police) Kevin Norris worked with the city attorney and the judge to come up with something that was constitutional and enforceable.”
Norris provided a brief summary to commissioners prior to their vote.
“Basically this makes it an actual crime for a theft from a retailer, and this (ordinance) specifically addresses that issue,” Norris said.
The commission also approved adding a new section pertaining to the use of obscene language and usage of telecommunications devices for the use of such language.
“This ordinance will help the police department on those calls where text messages or phones are used for threatening, unsavory behavior,” Spohn said.