Moore, Oklahoma Hit With Theft, Tornadoes and Sex Crimes

The city of Moore, Oklahoma has had it’s share of bad press over the past few days. You may remember this sprawling metropolis, Oklahoma’s seventh largest city, from the EF5 tornado that ransacked it and the neighboring city of Newcastle, leaving a 1.3 mile wide path of destruction over 17 miles long. While the grief of entire subdivisions that had been demolished was fresh in the minds of residents who had to pick up the pieces, foul criminals sought to pick up some things of their own.

19-year-old Blake Lynn Self, of Moore, Oklahoma was sentenced to serve three months in prison, 60 days in a halfway house, and 90 days home confinement for duplicitously receiving disaster relief funds by submitting a fraudulent claim for monetary benefits to FEMA on June 14, 2013. Self claimed that the residence he was primarily living at was the home of an actual victim, when in reality he lived elsewhere. Self pled guilty to committing benefits fraud on January 8, 2014.

If this wasn’t bad enough, the city of Moore, Oklahoma, 20-year-old resident Danny Hilton was taken into custody for allegedly playing a dirty game of truth or dare with two young girls, aged 14 and 15. During the games, which began back in August of 2013, Hilton encouraged the girls to have sexual relations with one another while he watched, and then forced them to do the same with him. Hilton’s father told News 9 in an interview that his son played the game on weekends, either when the parents were gone or asleep. The 15-year-old stated in court documents that she was successful in fending off one sexual attack, but not the others. That is when the girls decided to get their parents involved.

Danny Hilton in his 2014 mug shot.
Danny Hilton in his 2014 mug shot.

Hilton’s father has gone on record to deny claims that he kicked Hilton out of the home after learning of the crimes, though Hilton later admitted to investigators that he engaged in the game and the sexual misconduct. Hilton is currently in the Cleveland County Jail, near Moore, awaiting sentencing on three counts of second-degree rape and two counts of forcible sodomy.

On a good note, there should soon be a whole lot less shaking in Moore, Oklahoma as the city begins work on new preventative measures to keep them safer in the next tornado outbreak. New building codes created to prevent extensive damage were rolled out to residents requiring new homes to be built to withstand winds of up to 135 mph. The accepted building standard nationwide, according to NBC affiliate KFOR, is for homes to be able to handle winds up to 90 mph. After structural engineers reviewed the damage from the 2013 tornado, the Moore City Council approved 11 building code suggestions. For homeowners, this means stronger roof shields and more wind resistant garage doors among other changes. Still, for those who lost their homes, the tougher codes come to welcoming arms.

“This last tornado is over $2 billion in costs,” explained Dr. Chris Ramseyer, associate professor of civil engineering at OU. “And with better homes, stronger buildings, that destructive force will be minimized and the cost will be minimized.”

Ramseyer went on to say the costs are a “small expense for the homeowner…one or two cents per dollar on a home,” and that it will only apply to homes that have not yet been constructed. The city hopes these new measures will bring some much-needed peace and security to the residents of Moore that have already lost so much.

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