Do residency, work, presence restrictions do anything to help public safety?
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But first, we have some news items to cover
From the Post Gazette: Legislature passes bill addressing legal concerns about Pa. sex offender registration law. A bill meant to bring Pennsylvania’s unconstitutional sex offender registration rules into compliance with state and federal law unanimously passed the state Legislature on Tuesday and is expected to be signed by the governor soon. But critics of sex offender registration laws believe that what the Legislature has done will further complicate the issue, likely forcing future court challenges.
From the Seattle Times: This is a change in law that criminalizes teen sexting. Teenagers should not be labeled as sex offenders simply for texting intimate pictures of themselves to someone else. But that is exactly what can happen right now in Washington state. The state’s child pornography laws make no distinction between teens who send pictures of their own bodies and adults who take explicit images of children to exploit them.
From The Baxter Bulletin: ‘Pedosexual Movement’ must be stopped in its tracks. Recently, through various social media outlets, I have come across a few articles concerning the ‘pedosexual movement,’ and their lobbying for the legalization and normalization of pedophilia. If you don’t know what that word means, look it up. If you have a minute, and choose to do your own research, you will find that the pedosexual movement is indeed a real thing, with its own flag, and its own agenda. They are coming, and they are bringing an army of lobbyists and lawyers with them. So far they have been really good at keeping their efforts relatively quiet.
From The LA Times: California must consider earlier parole for sex offenders, judge rules. California must consider earlier parole for potentially thousands of sex offenders, even those convicted of pimping children, a state judge said Friday. The judge preliminarily ordered prison officials to rewrite part of the regulations but Gov. Jerry Brown promised voters all sex offenders would be excluded. That goes too far, the judge said in rejecting Deputy Atty. Gen. Maria Chan’s argument that the ballot measure gave state officials broad discretion to exclude any class of offenders whose release might harm public safety. “If the voters had intended to exclude all registered sex offenders from early parole consideration under Proposition 57, they presumably would have said so”.
From Reason.com: 22-Year-Old Woman Facing Sexual Assault Charges for Relationship with 18-Year-Old Male Student. The teacher, who was 21 at the time, was charged with three counts of second-degree sexual assault, even though she was engaged in a consensual relationship with her purported victim. In fact, the 18-year-old’s parents said their son and the teacher are in love, and asked the prosecutor to drop the charges, according to WTIC TV.
We had a couple comments from Episode 10, Is it better to do something than nothing
Jack commented at registrymatters.co. He says:
The current whipping boy is child pornography. Most charged with this offense never made contact nor tried to make contact with a child (under 18 years of age). These are voyeurs looking at online porn sites (23 put up and stocked by our FBI) and had no intention of ever harming a child. They were compelled by their addiction to seek this porn. Given they have to register as SO’s the rest of their lives, the death penalty may be more humane. A new crop of SO’s is emerging, teens who are sexting pictures. This is sure to feed a lot of lawyers and prisons but an absolute death knell for the lives of the offenders. The registry must be reclassified for violent offenders or completely abolished. This is double indemnity for a crime and I would think, unconstitutional.
Linda writes in response to Jack’s comment: I totally agree with your comment . I agree there should be reclassification of registrants. People who view porn have different minds than those of violent offenders. No harm to anyone is intended. I know a guy who stumbled on child porn while viewing adult porn and he now is branded for life ! Have known him all his life and would never hurt a fly. They throw everyone into one pot and call it quits – so unfair to many!
And SW, possibly from the Northern Midwest, says “Most of us can’t vote” https://www.brennancenter.org/criminal-disenfranchisement-laws-across-united-states
Listener Chanta from Alaska left a voicemail message:
We are going to be talking about the use of and the efficacy of residency and work and presence restrictions of registrants.
First one was in AL in 1996
About 14 states had something by 2006
While this controversial residency law has raised questions of fairness and constitutionality, it is currently legal and valid. Some critics argue that it simply “plays to the fears of the public…and does little to actually curb sexual assaults.”
Who has the most restrictive policies? AL?
There are states that have no restrictions
Have any states filed challenges to reverse having restrictions?
What were the grounds, what was the nexus of the challenges?
The PEW Charitable Trusts says 27 states have restrictions – this is as of 2016
Psychologists who have treated sex offenders, such as Gerry Blasingame, chair of the California Coalition on Sexual Offending, say the impetus behind the laws — the belief that offenders who have been released will continue to seek out child victims who they do not know — is more perception than reality. Most perpetrators abuse children they know; just one in 10 perpetrators of child sex abuse is a stranger to the victim.
A U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics study in 2003, the most recent available, found that 5.3 percent of inmates released from prison after being convicted of a sex offense are arrested for another sexual offense within three years. (Although researchers generally acknowledge that the recidivism rate may be low because these crimes are underreported.)
But you Larry, don’t believe that statistics even matter. It’s about if this is constitutional. We can’t get past that. We can use stats to back up the claim. But it is unconstitutional from the start.
And before we go, I want to give a shout out to LifeTimes Magazine at lifetimesmagazine.org. It is a brand new publication about being on the registry, but takes a positive view and focuses on the successes.