Northwest Oklahoma lawmaker resigns after arraignment

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OKLAHOMA CITY (AP/KAKE) -

The president pro tem of the Oklahoma Senate says a state senator made the right decision in resigning from office as he faces a sexual battery charge for allegedly groping an Uber driver.

Sen. Mike Schulz said in a statement Tuesday that he hopes Sen. Bryce Marlatt now "is able to focus completely on his family and the legal matter before him."

Marlatt was booked Tuesday morning on one felony count of sexual battery, arraigned before a judge and later released on a $5,000 bond. He said nothing as left the courthouse.

A married father of four children from the western Oklahoma city of Woodward, Marlatt was charged after the Uber driver told police he grabbed her head and kissed her neck after she picked him up from an Oklahoma City restaurant June 26.

Defense attorney Scott Anderson said he had no comment about the allegations against Marlatt.

Marlatt's district included the three panhandle counties. He is the third Oklahoma lawmaker to resign this year under suspicion of criminal violations.

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