Summer Thyme Creel, 34, of Oklahoma, underwent a sterilization procedure in November, five months after a federal judge told her he might consider her decision in her sentencing
An Oklahoma woman convicted of using a counterfeit check has received a reduced sentence after getting medically sterilized at the suggestion of the judge.
U.S. District Judge Stephen Friot showed leniency to 34-year-old Summer Thyme Creel during her sentencing Thursday because she had surgery to prevent pregnancies.
Creel was sentenced to a year in federal prison and three years on supervised release. She also was ordered to pay more than $15,200 in restitution.
Friot had suggested the medical procedure in a June order, noting that the admitted drug user had relinquished her parental rights to six of her seven children from different men.
Creel gave up her parental rights after a 2012 Oklahoma Department of Human Services investigation showed that she had failed to adequately protect her children from harm. Her seventh child was born four years after the investigation.
On Thursday, the judge gave her a lenient one year prison sentence because she underwent the surgery. She faced a maximum of 10 years in prison
After a 2012 Oklahoma Department of Human Services investigation, Creel gave up parental rights to six of her seven children. Her seventh child was born in 2016
Creel has a lengthy rap sheet, including theft and counterfeit check writing charges. In 2016, she pleaded guilty to a single count in a federal grand jury indictment for her participation in an alleged counterfeit ring that used information stolen from mailboxes for actions including fraudulently making purchases at stores.
Creed pleaded guilty to having used a $202.22 counterfeit check at a Walmart in Moore, Oklahoma, in 2014.
She faced a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison.
Friot also noted that Creel had likely partaken of crack cocaine and methamphetamine while she was pregnant with at least some of her children.
In June, US District Judge Stephen Friot noted that Creel had given up parental rights to six of her seven children and was an admitted drug user who likely used while she was pregnant
At the time, Friot wrote that Creel could, if she chose to, ‘present medical evidence to the court establishing that she has been rendered incapable of procreation’ and that he can take into consideration any information about her background, character and actions during her sentencing.
Creel’s defense attorney, Brett Behenna, said that after speaking with Creel at length about the sterilization decision, ‘she voluntarily wanted to do it’.
A prosecutor, however, urged Friot not to give any positive weight to her sterilization when sentencing her.
In a memo, Assistant US Attorney Jessica Perry told Jude Friot that Creel had expressed an interest in being sterilized prior to the judge’s statement.
Perry also noted that Creel’s decision to undergo sterilization was irrelevant to any sentencing decisions because having more children has no relationship to the nature of the crimes that she was charged with.