Oklahoma state Senator Bryce Marlatt (R-Woodward) has resigned, effective immediately.
Marlatt was accused of forcefully grabbing his Uber driver and kissing her neck while she was driving him to an Oklahoma City bar on June 26.
The 40-year-old from Woodward was booked into the Oklahoma jail Tuesday morning on one felony count of sexual battery and released on a $5,000 bond. If convicted, he faces up to 10 years in prison.
Marlatt is the seventh lawmaker to resign or announce his resignation since November. The other six include:
- Rep. Tom Newell (R-Seminole), who resigned in November to take a job in the private sector, just weeks after winning reelection.
- Rep. Dan Kirby (R-Tulsa), who resigned in February following allegations of sexual harassment.
- Rep. Scott Martin (R-Norman), who announced his resignation in March, effective at the end of the session. He's taking a position with the Norman Chamber of Commerce.
- Sen. Ralph Shortey (R-Oklahoma City), who resigned in March after being charged with engaging in child prostitution. He's since been indicted on federal charges.
- Sen. Kyle Loveless (R-Oklahoma City), who resigned amid an ethics probe in April.
- Sen. Dan Newberry (R-Tulsa), who announced his resignation in June to pursue a private sector promotion. His resignation won't be effective until January 31, 2018.
Along with the April death of Rep. David Brumbaugh, that adds up to eight House and Senate seats that have been or will need to be filled through special elections in 2017.
Governor Mary Fallin will have to set a date for a special election to replace Marlatt.
In June, The Journal Record reported the cost for special elections in Oklahoma this year could be as much as $200,000. A special election to replace Marlatt could increase that number by as much as $44,000.