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Video at the end of this article.
Six years ago, Alicia Kozakiewicz says she was just a normal 13-year-old girl. That all changed on New Year's Day 2002. Today, she recounted for Congress how an online sexual predator befriended her in an Internet chat room, then kidnapped her, drove her across state lines and locked her in a cage in his basement, where he beat her, tortured her and raped her.
"I cry inside. I mourn for that child that was me. The child that was stolen from me. Make no mistake -- that child was murdered. I know now that some parts of me are forever there. The child that I was is still chained in that room, still suffering."
- So stop it! If you see yourself as a victim, you will ALWAYS be a victim. Pick yourself up, brush yourself off, and move on, become a SURVIVOR! I was molested as a child as well, and I am NOT a victim. I was, but I am a survivor now. Yes I'm sure your soul and spirit has been beaten very badly, as has mine, but you cannot dwell on the past or you will always repeat it.
Kozakiewicz warned the House Judiciary Committee of the widespread dangers of Internet sex crimes.
- The whole world is dangerous. Not just the internet. If the internet is so dangerous, when are we going to set an age limit? We do that to driving, alcohol or tobacco purchases, so why not limit who can get on the internet? Plus, it is NOT widespread. Studies have shown this is a myth propagated by misinformed people. I have articles on this blog about the studies done about Online Victimization, so check them out. Nothing the law or police can do will protect anybody. It may make you "feel safe and protected" but in reality you are not. Nobody is. We could all die, be shot, kidnapped, or anything else at any moment in time.
"The boogey man is real. And he lives on the Net. He lived in my computer -- and he lives in yours," she said, looking at the lawmakers. "While you are sitting here, he is at home with your children."
Kozakiewicz was rescued by FBI agents. She is now a 19-year-old college sophomore. Scott Tyree of Herndon, Va., was convicted of the crime and is serving a 20-year prison sentence. Not only did he beat, torture and rape Kozakiewicz, he also posted online pictures of her taken while she was locked in his basement.
Committee members were urged by fellow lawmakers to take legislative action against online sex crimes.
Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, D-Fla., cited a "dearth of federal resources devoted to investigating and prosecuting child exploitation and crimes."
- So why are these not cited in the news story so we can see these studies? I do not believe anything anybody says without proof, and neither should anybody else.
She cited Flint Waters of the Wyoming Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, telling the committee, "right now there are nearly 500,000 identified individuals in the United States trafficking child pornography on the Internet. Law enforcement knows who they are and where they are. What shocked me the most and what compelled me to get involved in this issue is that due to a lack of resources, law enforcement is investigating less than two percent of these known 500,000 individuals."
- Oh I think this is a load of crap? Everybody throws out this 500,000 or 100,000 number. Where is the facts to back up what you are saying? If these individuals are "identified" why are they not in prison?
"Sometimes the problems we face as a Congress are extremely complex and other times the solutions are simple and right in front of our eyes," she said. "There is no mystery about what we need to do now to save thousands of children from abuse and exploitation."
- So what might that be? Nothing in this world can you do to protect society in general? You cannot even protect over 3000 people who died in 2001, so why do you think we should believe you here? Nobody is safe from crime, nobody!
Wasserman Schultz has introduced the Protect Our Children Act of 2007.
"The Internet has unfortunately become an easy avenue for predators to find unsuspecting victims," said Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, R-Wash. "That is why I have introduced legislation, the Sex Offender Internet Prohibition Act of 2007, which imposes mandatory penalties, five to 10 years in prison, for individuals who are required to register as sex offenders and knowingly access a Web site with the intent to communicate with an unsuspecting child. This bill sends a clear message to sex offenders that if they use these Internet sites to contact children, they will go to jail."
- Election time is coming up, so nows the time to bust out the child issues. The damn prison systems are overflowing as we speak, and you are making issues worse instead of solving issues. Why don't you go after the internet sites? Make them have security in place, like being made to use a credit card or some other item to verify who they are? And children cannot get access to these sites without a parents permission? You are punishing offenders where over 90% had nothing to do with the internet at all. You just love "looking good" to the sheeple, and are doing nothing to solve the problems. The sheep will follow.....
Rep. Marilyn Musgrave, R-Colo., touted her bill, the Child Pornography Elimination Act of 2007.
- Just like the War on Drugs. You saw how they eliminated the drugs!!!! NOT!!! So you will not eliminate child porn or porn. Yes it's disgusting, but you are living in a fantasy world lady!!
"Although current law prohibits the possession, trafficking or transport of child pornography, a person who uses a computer to knowingly access child pornography intending to view it, and who then views that child pornography, can arguably avoid criminal liability as long as he or she does not download or print the images. The law must be amended to ensure that these offenders do not escape liability because of a technicality in the law, and this is something my bill does. It will criminalize the knowing access of child pornography."
- So how are you going to know if someone looked at a picture they should not have looked at? This is just a precursor to policing the Internet, oh wait, you are doing that now... Big Brother...
The committee also heard testimony from federal officials, as well as experts in the fight against online sex crimes.
The FBI estimates that there may be as many as 50,000 child predators prowling the Internet.
- May be? Hell, I could say there may be 1 million prowling the Internet as well to boost the fear factor. Where is the proof? There maybe 50,000 murderers, identity thieves, gang members, or other criminals prowling the internet also.
"There can be no tolerance and no retreat in our efforts to combat this scourge. We cannot and will not rest until these predators are shut down and locked up," said Michael Mason, executive assistant director of the FBI's Criminal, Cyber, Response and Services Branch.
- So you will be working on this for the rest of your lives... Just like the war on drugs! Why don't you just get rid of the internet, and lets all go back to the stone age?
Mason highlighted a variety of FBI efforts, such as Project Safe Childhood, which "brings federal, state and local law enforcement and prosecutors together in task forces led by the local U.S. attorney to combat online child sexual exploitation"; coordination with "Internet service providers and search engine operators to monitor their Web sites and to alert us when they discover illegal content"; and the training of "more than 16,000 law enforcement officers to handle digital forensic evidence" and improve the way the FBI "performs computer forensics and delivers the processed results to investigators."
- Yep, lets turn the whole world into police. Sorry, I don't want anything to do with it.
Laurence Rothenberg of the Justice Department urged Congress to "establish a mandatory minimum sentence for possession of child pornongraphy," noting that "child pornography is not treated as seriously as it should be."
- Mandatory sentences is a major problem. This is why the prison system is overflowing. Where are the REAL solutions? Assign everyone on the face of the planet a static IP address, log that in a database and track everyones moves. Heil Hitler!!
Michelle Collins of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, which has a CyberTipline to apprehend those who use the Internet to victimize children, urged the committee to "take a serious look at the dangers threatening our children today and to move decisively to provide law enforcement with the toolsit needs to identify and prosecute those who target our children."
Waters cautioned lawmakers that a lack of resources is harming efforts to address this problem. "We are overwhelmed, we are underfunded and we don't have the resources we need to save these children," said Waters. "The price we pay for coming up short will be measured in children lost."
- You people are just totally out of control! The more laws passed, the more this will build, until it crumbles and falls. Come up with some solutions instead of acting in knee-jerk fashion. Think before you create laws that won't work. Come on? I thought you did this. Guess not!
"Predators use the Internet to infiltrate social networking sites to arrange meetings with minors, where they use brute force to commit sexual offenses -- or worse," said Committee Chairman John Conyers, D-Mich.. "We cannot allow the Internet to be a playground where our children are one mouse-click away from sexual predators."
- FEAR, FEAR, FEAR!!!!!!!!! The only thing we have to fear, is fear itself! Ever heard of that before? Then eliminate the Internet and be done with it!!!!! If it saves one child, right? Just think of all the children who would be saved if you got rid of the Internet. Besides, it's making people into zombies, like me, sitting hear all day reading BS!
However, it was Kozakiewicz's testimony that carried the most weight. "Support the children," she pleaded to the committee. "Save us from the pedophiles, the pornographers, the monsters."
-"The state must declare the child to be the most precious treasure of the people. As long as the government is perceived as working for the benefit of the children, the people will happily endure almost any curtailment of liberty and almost any deprivation." - Adolph Hitler (Mein Kampf)
Wednesday, October 17, 2007
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Oh, lets just kill him without even a court date! Why don't we just go back to the wild west days and let everyone take out justice their own way. Yes, this is terrible, but the man is entitled to a court hearing regardless of what you think about him or what he did.
The man suspected of raping a two-year-old and sexually assaulting a six-year-old girl will face 22 charges, including one federal charge of production of child pornography.
While police and the public are relieved to have the wanted child predator off the streets, for the family of the young girl shown sexually assaulted, their nightmare is not over yet.
A police report details the graphic abuse the girl was forced to endure, and the family of that rape victim says they wish Chester Stiles would have killed himself.
Chester Stiles is in isolation at the Clark County Detention Center waiting for his first court appearance Wednesday morning. But Tuesday, the spokesman for his victim's family talked about the arrest and what the family is feeling.
Eyewitness News also heard from Stiles' ex girlfriend who went to police and told them he was the man in the sex tape.
The sexual predator who is now jail said he was tired of running and readily gave himself up to police. But his young victim's mother wishes he hadn't been taken alive.
Attorney Jerry Donahue said, "I know for a fact she is relieved. Certainly no other children are going to get molested by him. However, I think she is also a little disappointed. I'm pretty sure that she wishes he would have kept his word and committed suicide like he said he would."
Jerry Donahue is representing the victim's family. He says he believes the mother never knew about the abuse and says the girl blocked out the attacks.
"She's a bright little girl. She's aware something is going on, especially when she's meeting with police officers, psychiatrists or psychologists. I just don't think it's had a negative effect on her yet," Donahue continued.
The girl, now seven years old, was found safe on Sept. 28 with her mother in Las Vegas after Nye Count ySheriff Tony DeMeo made the decision to circulate her photo from the videotape and asked for help identifying her.
However, the past few weeks have had a negative effect on a number of people close to this case, including Elaine Thomas. She is Stiles former girl friend and the one who originally told police he was the man in the videotape sexually abusing the young girl.
Thomas said, "I was afraid that if it came out that I was the one that identified him before he was off the streets, that he might try to get some sort of retaliation. I was also afraid that he might show up at my house looking for a place to hide."
She says the last time she saw Stiles was in mid-September.
"He had dropped off his truck at my house. He had had an accident with it and asked if he could keep it in front of my house until he could get it taken care of," she said.
And while the mother of the victim is relieved of the arrest, there is some emotional distress.
Jerry Donahue added, "She's angry enough they if there were the death penalty for this offense, she would volunteer to throw the switch or pull the trigger."
The family's attorney says they found out about the Stiles arrest Monday night and contacted him about what had happened.
Chester Stiles is facing a total of 22 counts, including one federal count of Production of Child Pornography.
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Just tell me. How many kids have been harmed on Halloween by a sex offender? None that I know of. So what is all the fear and hysteria about? Be a good parent and go with your children.
This is the second year that all forty of the county's sexual predators will be required to report to a probation office during the city's designated trick-or-treating hours.
- Are they on parole or probation? If not, then this crap is illegal! They are not on lifetime supervision! Why don't you tell the parents to not let their children go out by themselves? If they were smart they'd not do this anyway. They need to go with their children, then it would not be an issue and violate peoples rights to be secure in their own home.
During that time, the offenders will be drug tested and undergo group counseling.
- Further illegal violation of rights without due process or probable cause, if they are not on probation and parole, then you cannot legally do this.
It's a way to knock out two birds with one stone says Deputy Chief Probation Officer Jim Wingate.
But, not everyone agrees with the plan, saying the ankle monitors all sex offenders in Allen County are already required to wear are safeguard enough.
"It all boils down to education, part of the reason for initiating this project is to educate not only the offender, but the community at large as to the presence of offenders and the entire issue of sexual assault in the community," says Wingate.
Neighboring Franklin County, Ohio is studying Allen County's plan for eliminating these sex offenders from the trick-or-treating experience and may soon follow in its footsteps.
- Look, this is also a violation of religious activities. What is next? They can't celebrate Christmas or Easter?
Nicole Pence is investigating that very issue and we will have a full report for you next week.
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Town Council tabled a decision on a proposed sex offender ordinance that would not only restrict where registered sex offenders can live, but where they can spend time in the town.
The decision to table the item came after an hour and a half spent in executive session Tuesday night to consult with Town Attorney Robert Brown. After returning to the council chambers, the council debated the provisions of the ordinance with Police Chief Waylan Rhodes.
The debate centered on restricting where sex offenders can spend time in town. The draft of the ordinance reads, “It is unlawful for a person who is required to register on the database because of one or more conviction(s) involving a minor to go in, on, or within 1,000 feet of a premise where children commonly gather.”
The ordinance deems places where children commonly gather as public parks, public playgrounds, private or public schools, libraries, public swimming pools, semi-public swimming pools, public or private youth centers, day care centers or video arcade facilities.
The ordinance also restricts registered sex offenders from living within 1,000 feet of those areas, but makes an exception for those who are already residing there.
Rhodes said that he supports the entire ordinance, because he said most sex offenders travel outside of their hometown to commit violations, making a residency restriction alone worthless against non-residents. “They go to other cities to do their offending because people in their neighborhoods know them,” he said.
- Well you are wrong sir. Where did you come up with this BS? Most sex crimes occur in the victims own home or by someone very close to the family. So residency restrictions will do nothing to protect these people. This just shows how ignorant you are, IMO.
Council member David Hillock said that the congregation limitations may not be necessary because any sex offender who knows a police officer is watching him or her will quickly leave.
“The officer is going to do the same thing even if the ordinance doesn’t exist, and no registered sex offender is going to get back in their car and keep watching the kids,” Hillock said.
Yet, Rhodes said that without the entire ordinance, registered sex offenders would be free to visit areas where children gather and police officers have no power to make them leave.
“If we encounter them, we can do nothing,” he said. “We can smile and walk away, and there’s nothing we can do.”
Although several cities limit where sex offenders can reside, including Carrollton, Farmers Branch, and Plano, Little Elm would be the first to limit where sex offenders can congregate in town.
The proposed ordinance does allow for registered sex offenders to travel through restricted areas to carry out legitimate business, visit family members or friends, or to attend an educational institution as a student. Police officers may ask for proof that the visit meets these requirements.
It also only applies to registered sex offenders who committed a crime against a minor, and it does not apply if the offender was a minor when the crime was committed.
Hillock proposed splitting the ordinance into two sections: one restricting where sex offenders can go and the other restricting where they can live. He also suggested bumping the residency restrictions from 1,000 feet to 2,000 feet of where children gather.
“If we pass an ordinance that causes all sex offenders who intended to move to Little Elm to move somewhere else, I’m fine with that,” he said.
- Yep, push your problems off to someone else. When all states and counties do this, then what?
With less than 20 registered sex offenders living in Little Elm, Hillock argued that the entire ordinance may be too strict for such a small number of offenders.
- All this for 20 people?
“That’s a pretty small percentage to factor in such a broad stroke,” Hillock said.
Council member Brandon Gerard pointed out that nearly 200 registered sex offenders live in nearby communities, and an ordinance that solely restricted residency would not protect Little Elm children against them.
“There’s nothing they can do for anyone who comes from out of town,” Gerard said.
Council member Beverly Hughes added that she trusted Rhodes in his assessment of the situation.
“It’s all new territory and I wish we knew all the answers,” Hughes said. “I do not want to step on anybody’s toes, because I know that some people who are registered sex offenders are not bad people…If you [Rhodes] tell me that’s what you need to do, I will trust that you will do it in a professional way.”
The council will readdress the issue at a future meeting. They asked for more information from town staff members including a map showing where sex offenders could live if the residency restrictions were doubled and for a draft of the ordinance if the portion limiting where they could congregate was removed.
The council also asked town staff to provide more information on a possible purchase of wastewater treatment capacity in the Upper Trinity Doe Creek wastewater plant, which will provide service to future development along U.S. Highway 380.
The purchase would allow the town to offer sewer service in the area before developers move in, which could entice them to the area.
“Unfortunately, the way this works is if you don’t buy capacity now, and you have new development come in, then it’s not likely that development will have any sanitary sewer service and development won’t take place,” Town Manager Ivan Langford said.
The town would have to pay for the capacity up front, and the funds would be used to construct the plant. Langford said that the cost is estimated at $10 per gallon.
If the town does not decide to purchase capacity now, it is unclear when the next chance for sewer service would become available.
“If the window of opportunity closes, you have to wait until the next expansion,” he said. “It could be two to four years down the road.”
In other action, the council:
*Approved a specific use permit for a day care in the Villages at Eldorado;
*Presented a certificate of appreciation to Michael Topor, former chairman of the Public Relations Committee;
*Proclaimed Oct. 15 to 19 as “Chamber of Commerce Week;”
*Approved a bid of $381,785.84 from Quality Excavation for the Eldorado sanitary sewer maintenance project;
*Appointed Gerard to serve on the Public Relations Committee to replace Hillock;
*Set a work session for Nov. 13; and,
*Did not act on a rezoning along Smotherman Road because the applicant withdrew the request.
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I am SO SICK of hearing "unintended consequences!" Nothing is unintended about these laws, they are KNOWN consequences.
Bigger problems created
Beware of unintended consequences, especially when voters take the law into their own hands, as demonstrated by the passage of Jessica’s Law last November.
The law bars sex offenders, released after November 2006, from living within 2,000 feet of schools and parks. It sounded good on paper and 70 percent of California voters approved it.
However, as a result of that law, Ventura County’s first designated sexually violent predator, Ross Wollschlager, has been living in a tent in a riverbed since August, after he was kicked out of seven hotels throughout the county. He was offered a place to stay with a friend, but couldn’t accept because the friend lives within 2,000 feet of a park.
That is one example of thousands of potentially homeless sexual offenders in California. That is worrisome on two counts:
- First, studies show the risk of sexual predators reoffending drops when they have a stable place to live.
- Second, it is much harder to keep track of someone who is homeless.
For instance, if sex offenders have a place to live, their address is listed on the Megan’s Law site. If they are homeless, no address is given and they are listed only as “transient,” as is currently the case with Mr. Wollschlager.
Certainly, Mr. Wollschlager’s living in a river bottom makes it harder to keep track of him, even though he is monitored by a global positioning system.
It was just the circumstance those opposed to the law — including The Star — warned about at the time Proposition 83 was voted on.
Michael Schwartz, Ventura County’s special assistant district attorney, told The Star in September: “The status of this case with him (Wollschlager) living in a river bottom is not a good state of affairs. I think the state has got to come up with a better solution where to house these people where we can keep track of them.”
The solution the state is employing at the moment is arresting released sex offenders who live too close to schools and parks. Although the state Supreme Court last week blocked the arrest of four parolees who claim Proposition 83 is vague and unfairly punishes sex offenders after they are released from prison, it declined Monday to expand its ruling to cover all paroled sex offenders affected by the law.
That is despite the fact state prisons are so overcrowded federal judges have threatened to release some prisoners before they have served their full sentences.
In July, it was determined that some 2,100 newly paroled sex offenders in California were living illegally near schools and parks and they were given 45 days to find new homes. In Ventura County in August, 33 registered sex offenders were identified by their parole agents as having to move.
Thursday, parole agents around the state were directed to arrest sex offenders who could not prove they were living outside the restricted zones.
State Sen. George Runner, R-Lancaster, co-author of Jessica’s Law, said in July that he would be willing to amend the law if housing for sex offenders becomes a problem.
We think the evidence is in that housing is a problem, as demonstrated by Mr. Wollschlager’s situation and the ongoing arrests. Those arrests should be halted at least until the court challenge on behalf of the four parolees is decided.
Jessica’s Law was well-intentioned, but that does not make it a defensible law.
Sen. Runner needs to amend his law or the courts, no doubt, will eventually amend it for him, as they should.
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Slap on the wrist! The average Joe would be in prison and not be granted immediate parole. Typical though!
A former state prison guard arrested for trying to arrange through the Internet to have sex with what he believed was a 13-year-old girl was sentenced to a year in prison Wednesday in Dauphin County Court.
Terry R. Garlock Jr., 40, a guard at the state Correctional Institution at Camp Hill who has been held in Dauphin County Prison since his arrest last October, was granted immediate parole.
Judge Bruce F. Bratton went beyond what the prosecution was asking and gave Garlock a consecutive term of three years probation, which will leave him under the court’s supervision for the next four years. He also fined Garlock $700.
“I don’t even pretend to understand” Bratton said of the Lower Paxton Twp. man’s actions.
Garlock’s mother, girlfriend and two sisters attended the hearing. Arthur Gutkin, Garlock’s attorney, said his client will be living with his mother in McKean County.
According to authorities, Garlock sent naked images of himself to a girl he thought was named Patty, but who was really an undercover agent for the Child Predator Unit of the state attorney general’s office.
Garlock pleaded guilty to criminal attempt at unlawful contact with a minor and unlawful use of a communication facility in the first days of his trial in June.
I thought the Constitution says they cannot take your home? He must not have had it all paid off or something. More articles about this man, can be found using the search engine on my blog, or here.
Time Out! He served 11 months of a "THREE" year sentence. How many other SO's get that break? Any other SO out there would be in the same or worse financial situation as him. SUCKS TO BE HIM! Puritanism plus Hitler equals COPS!
No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.
After being forced to move because his home was too close to a school, former police officer and convicted sex offender James Fitzpatrick will lose the house in a sheriff's sale.
A civil eviction suit was filed against Fitzpatrick in Erie County Common Pleas Court in May when he refused to move from the 620 Decatur St. home. As a registered sex offender, Fitzpatrick is required by Ohio law to live more than 1,000 feet from the premises of any school.
The eviction suit was dropped in September, when Fitzpatrick moved to the 5000 block of Dallas Ave.
A foreclosure motion was also filed in May in Erie County Common Pleas Court against Fitzpatrick and Alicia Fitzpatrick for the Decatur Street residence.
A foreclosure decree was issued in September, and an order of sale was issued Oct. 5.
The two-story home with four bedrooms and a single bath was repossessed by U.S. Bank and will auctioned Nov. 27 with a starting bid of $41,000, according to the Erie County Sheriff's Office Web Site.
Built in 1950, Fitzpatrick's former residence was appraised at $61,500 in 2006, according to the Erie County Auditor's Web site.
The Fitzpatricks took out a $50,450 mortgage on the home in August 1995. They owed more than $43,000 in late charges, interest and back taxes on the house at the time of the filing, according to court records.
James Fitzpatrick was convicted in 2006 of four counts of criminal acts against a then 15-year-old for incidents that occurred while on duty.
No one answered the door for comment at Fitzpatrick' residence Tuesday afternoon.
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Former Tennessee state trooper accused of asking for 'favor'
A Tennessee state trooper who resigned after a porn star claimed she performed oral sex on him during a traffic stop has been arrested.
Agents arrested James "Randy" Moss on Tuesday after a grand jury indicted him on 10 charges, including tampering with evidence, official misconduct and official oppression.
Moss, who resigned from the Tennessee Highway Patrol in May, was released on $2,500 bond. His attorney, Jack Lowery Sr., said he plans "to enter a plea of not guilty to all the counts."
Porn actress Justis Richert wrote on her blog under film name "Barbie Cummings" that Moss took photos and video of their encounter in May and sent copies to her.
She said she acknowledged having drugs in her car but claimed the trooper threw them into brush near the highway in exchange for oral sex. She also wrote that she told the trooper she made "dirty movies" and they then watched sex videos together in his patrol car.
Since the allegations became public, more women have come forward to complain about alleged inappropriate behavior by Moss. Prosecutors have said some of the women complained that Moss asked to see their breasts when he stopped them.
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CHICAGO - A federal court jury found the police liable Tuesday for the unreasonable search of a grocery store employee who claimed that a Chicago police officer assaulted him with a screwdriver during a drug arrest three years ago, clearing the way for a $4 million settlement with the city.
"Justice was served," Coprez Coffie, 23, who brought the lawsuit against the police and the city, told reporters after the jury returned its verdict. "Now you see what's going on. It was brought to light."
The weeklong trial in the civil lawsuit before U.S. District Chief Judge James F. Holderman attracted additional attention because the police currently face controversies ranging from excessive force complaints to the alleged shakedown of civilians by an elite special operations unit that disbanded under pressure.
Jurors deliberated for three days before returning their verdict that one police officer had inserted the screwdriver between Coffie's buttocks while the other officer did nothing to stop him.
The incident allegedly took place in a West Side alley in August 2004.
Lawyers had agreed over the weekend that if the jury found for Coffie the damages would be $4 million plus court costs and attorney fees.
As the jurors got into the elevator outside the courtroom, Coffie called to them and said: "God bless you." One of the jurors called back: "God bless you" and another shouted: "Good luck."
The jurors refused to talk with reporters.
The city will evaluate its appeal options, the city's law department said in a statement Tuesday evening.
"We are disappointed with the verdict especially since it comes after three days of deliberations," the statement said.
The city's Office of Professional Standards, which researched claims of officer misconduct and found the allegations could not be sustained, said it would reopen its investigation to look at new information that developed in the civil trial.
"If appropriate, OPS can recommend a new outcome, and will," the office said in a statement.
City attorneys claimed the screwdriver incident never took place and noted that Coffie had pleaded guilty on the drug charge. He received probation.
"This case is not about the drugs," said Coffie's lead attorney, Jonathan Loevy.
Loevy said the evidence presented at the weeklong civil trial was strong enough that "there was no way to conclude anything but that the screwdriver was put into Mr. Coffie."
Loevy cited not only Coffie's testimony but that of two witnesses plus medical evidence that Coffie suffered an internal cut as a result of the screwdriver and the fact that a screwdriver was later found in the glove compartment of the squad car.
Coffie testified that he initially didn't want to report the alleged attack because he was embarrassed but told his mother who insisted that he report it. He told reporters that he no longer feels any physical pain as a result of the incident but that it bothers him when he thinks about it.
The latest major controversies involving the police department have focused on the special operations unit. The department announced last week that it would disband amid allegations that it was out of control.
Seven members of the unit face state charges that they engaged in shaking down civilians and intimidated them physically.
One of the seven, Jerome Finnigan, also faces federal charges that he plotted the murder of one of his fellow officers to keep him from cooperating with prosecutors in the ongoing investigation of the unit.
Three other officers have pleaded not guilty to charges they beat four businessmen in a bar while off duty. Another officer has pleaded not guilty to charges that he beat a 115-pound female bartender because she would not serve him a drink.
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An employee working at the Pima County jail has been accused of sexually abusing female inmates while on the job, according to court documents.
Christopher Erin Johnston was charged with five counts of sexual abuse and five counts of unlawful sexual conduct, according to an indictment in Pima County Superior Court.
The indictment says Johnston, 34, had sexual contact with three female inmates without their consent between July 30 and Aug. 5.
On three occasions, Johnston touched the women's breasts and in one of the incidents he rubbed his genitals on a woman's back and forced her to touch them, according to the indictment.
When the incidents occurred, Johnston was working for Correctional Medical Services, a company hired by the Pima County Sheriff's Department to provide health care to inmates, said Sgt. James Ogden, a spokesman for the Sheriff's Department.
Ogden said he did not know what kind of work Johnston performed at the jail, 1270 W. Silverlake Road. He said Johnston did not work directly for the county and that he is no longer employed at the jail.
Ken Fields, a spokesman for Correctional Medical Services, said the company had no comment Monday night.
According to its Web site, Correctional Medical Services has 300 sites in 24 states across the country. It provides medical, dental and behavioral health services to inmates by providing physicians, registered nurses and dentists to correctional institutions.
It could not be determined Monday night if Johnston was arrested.
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An Atlantic Beach police officer is off the job after finding himself on the wrong side of the law.
Terrance Wiggins, 45-years-old, was arrested Friday and formally charged with misconduct in office.
The arrest comes after an investigation by the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division, revealing Wiggins had propositioned an unknown woman for sex.
In exchange, the arrest warrant says, he would turn a blind eye to cocaine possesion. The warrant goes on to say, that after engaging in sexual acts, Wiggins returned the cocaine based substance to the woman, whose name is not being released.
The report also reveals this happened while Wiggins was on duty. Atlantic Beach's acting police chief, Paul Rizzo, tells us these types of allegations surfaced in early October - that's when he turned the case over to SLED.
Rizzo say's this arrest comes just as Atlantic Beach's police department was showing signs of improvement. "It brings down the moral quite a bit with all the officers. They're disappointed, I'm disappointed. We didn't expect this to come about. We're trying to develop Atlantic Beach into a new town. We're making a lot of changes. the streets are getting much better."
Terrance Wiggins is now out on bond. His next court date has not been scheduled yet.
Wiggins was with the Atlantic Beach Police Department for a little more than a year.
View the article here
WEARE - First, a father was charged with beating up his daughter's boyfriend after learning the two had sex. Now, the boy is charged with sexual assault.
- I hope this father is charged with child abuse and assault? He should've just talked with the parents of the boy and punished his daughter like a GOOD parent should do!
Police say Damon Hadley, 17, of Henniker admitted to having sex with his 15-year-old girlfriend. He has been charged with misdemeanor sexual assault, which carries up to a year in jail.
Both teens admitted to having sex during school hours, off school property last month. That afternoon, the girl's father went to John Stark Regional High School and beat the boy. School had just let out and the parking lot was filled with students and parents.
The boy suffered cuts and bruises. The father was charged with simple assault.
View the article here
BIRMINGHAM — In December, the United Nations took up a resolution calling for the abolition of life imprisonment without the possibility of parole for children and young teenagers. The vote was 185 to 1, with the United States the lone dissenter.
Indeed, the United States stands alone in the world in convicting young adolescents as adults and sentencing them to live out their lives in prison. According to a new report, there are 73 Americans serving such sentences for crimes they committed at 13 or 14.
Mary Nalls, an 81-year-old retired social worker here, has some thoughts about the matter. Her granddaughter Ashley Jones was 14 when she helped her boyfriend kill her grandfather and aunt — Mrs. Nalls’s husband and daughter — by stabbing and shooting them and then setting them on fire. Ms. Jones also tried to kill her 10-year-old sister.
Mrs. Nalls, who was badly injured in the rampage, showed a visitor to her home a white scar on her forehead, a reminder of the burns that put her into a coma for 30 days. She had also been shot in the shoulder and stabbed in the chest.
“I forgot,” she said later. “They stabbed me in the jaw, too.”
But Mrs. Nalls thinks her granddaughter, now 22, deserves the possibility of a second chance.
“I believe that she should have gotten 15 or 20 years,” Mrs. Nalls said. “If children are under age, sometimes they’re not responsible for what they do.”
The group that plans to release the report on Oct. 17, the Equal Justice Initiative, based in Montgomery, Ala., is one of several human rights organizations that say states should be required to review sentences of juvenile offenders as the decades go by, looking for cases where parole might be warranted.
But prosecutors and victims’ rights groups say there are crimes so terrible and people so dangerous that only life sentences without the possibility of release are a fit moral and practical response.
“I don’t think every 14-year-old who killed someone deserves life without parole,” said Laura Poston, who prosecuted Ms. Jones. “But Ashley planned to kill four people. I don’t think there is a conscience in Ashley, and I certainly think she is a threat to do something similar.”
Specialists in comparative law acknowledge that there have been occasions when young murderers who would have served life terms in the United States were released from prison in Europe and went on to kill again. But comparing legal systems is difficult, in part because the United States is a more violent society and in part because many other nations imprison relatively few people and often only for repeat violent offenses.
“I know of no systematic studies of comparative recidivism rates,” said James Q. Whitman, who teaches comparative criminal law at Yale. “I believe there are recidivism problems in countries like Germany and France, since those are countries that ordinarily incarcerate only dangerous offenders, but at some point they let them out and bad things can happen.”
The differences in the two approaches, legal experts said, are rooted in politics and culture. The European systems emphasize rehabilitation, while the American one stresses individual responsibility and punishment.
Corrections professionals and criminologists here and abroad tend to agree that violent crime is usually a young person’s activity, suggesting that eventual parole could be considered in most cases. But the American legal system is more responsive to popular concerns about crime and attitudes about punishment, while justice systems abroad tend to be administered by career civil servants rather than elected legislators, prosecutors and judges.
In its sentencing of juveniles, as in many other areas, the legal system in the United States goes it alone. American law is, by international standards, a series of innovations and exceptions. From the central role played by juries in civil cases to the election of judges to punitive damages to the disproportionate number of people in prison, the United States is an island in the sea of international law.
And the very issue of whether American judges should ever take account of foreign law is hotly disputed. At the hearings on their Supreme Court nominations, both John G. Roberts Jr. and Samuel A. Alito Jr. said they thought it a mistake to consider foreign law in constitutional cases.
But the international consensus against life-without-parole sentences for juvenile offenders may nonetheless help Ms. Jones. In about a dozen cases recently filed around the country on behalf of 13- and 14-year-olds sentenced to life in prison, lawyers for the inmates relied on a 2005 Supreme Court decision that banned the execution of people who committed crimes when they were younger than 18.
That decision, Roper v. Simmons, was based in part on international law. Noting that the United States was the only nation in the world to sanction the juvenile death penalty, Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, writing for the majority, said it was appropriate to look to “the laws of other countries and to international authorities as instructive” in interpreting the Eighth Amendment’s prohibition of cruel and unusual punishment.
He added that teenagers were different from older criminals — less mature, more susceptible to peer pressure and more likely to change for the better. Those findings, lawyers for the juvenile lifers say, should apply to their clients, too.
“Thirteen- and 14-year-old children should not be condemned to death in prison because there is always hope for a child,” said Bryan Stevenson, the executive director of the Equal Justice Initiative, which represents Ms. Jones and several other juvenile lifers.
The 2005 death penalty ruling applied to 72 death-row inmates, almost precisely the same number as the 73 prisoners serving life without parole for crimes committed at 13 or 14.
The Supreme Court did not abolish the juvenile death penalty in a single stroke. The 2005 decision followed one in 1988 that held the death penalty unconstitutional for those who had committed crimes under 16.
The new lawsuits, filed in Alabama, California, Florida, Missouri, North Carolina and Wisconsin, seek to follow a similar progression.
“We’re not demanding that all these kids be released tomorrow,” Mr. Stevenson said. “I’m not even prepared to say that all of them will get to the point where they should be released. We’re asking for some review.”
In defending American policy in this area in 2006, the State Department told the United Nations that sentencing is usually a matter of state law. “As a general matter,” the department added, juvenile offenders serving life-without-parole terms “were hardened criminals who had committed gravely serious crimes.”
Human rights groups have disputed that. According to a 2005 report from Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International, 59 percent of the more than 2,200 prisoners serving life without parole for crimes they committed at 17 or younger had never been convicted of a previous crime. And 26 percent were in for felony murder, meaning they participated in a crime that led to a murder but did not themselves kill anyone.
The new report focuses on the youngest offenders, locating 73 juvenile lifers in 19 states who were 13 and 14 when they committed their crimes. Pennsylvania has the most, with 19, and Florida is next, with 15. In those states and Illinois, Nebraska, North Carolina and Washington, 13-year-olds have been sentenced to die in prison.
In most of the cases, the sentences were mandatory, an automatic consequence of a murder conviction after being tried as an adult.
A federal judge here will soon rule on Ms. Jones’s challenge to her sentence. Ms. Poston, who prosecuted her, said Ms. Jones was beyond redemption.
“Between the ages of 2 and 3, you develop a conscience,” Ms. Poston said. “She never got the voice that says, ‘This is bad, Ashley.’ ”
“It was a blood bath in there,” Ms. Poston said of the night of the murders here, in 1999. “Ashley Jones is not the poster child for the argument that life without parole is too long.”
In a telephone interview from the Tutwiler Prison for Women in Wetumpka, Ala., Ms. Jones said she did not recognize the girl who committed her crimes. According to court filings, her mother was a drug addict and her stepfather had sexually molested her. “Everybody I loved, everybody I trusted, I was betrayed by,” Ms. Jones said.
“I’m very remorseful about what happened,” she said. “I should be punished. I don’t feel like I should spend the rest of my life in prison.”
Mrs. Nalls, her grandmother, had been married for 53 years when she and her husband, Deroy Nalls, agreed to take Ashley in. She was “a problem child,” and Mr. Nalls was a tough man who took a dislike to Ashley’s boyfriend, Geramie Hart. Mr. Hart, who was 16 at the time of the murders, is also serving a life term. Mrs. Nalls said he deserved a shot at parole someday as well.
View the article here
If you live in Georgia and this applies to you, please follow the instructions below ASAP!!!
We are writing today to ask you once again to give us some information. Over the last year we have spoken with many of you and taken statements and information about how HB 1059 has impacted your life. We need to understand the full scope of damage caused by this law, so we want to make sure we have the most up-to-date and complete information from each of you.
Today, we need to know whether you have in the past volunteered at a church, or currently volunteer at a church or other religious institution. If you have or do, please complete the information below and email it back to us as soon as possible.
Thanks in advance for your help!
1. Do you currently volunteer at a church in any capacity (sing in the choir, work in a soup kitchen, help with ministry activities, etc)?:
______ Yes _______ No
2. If yes, specifically, what kind of volunteering do you do at your church?
3. Have you in the past volunteered at a church in any capacity?:
______ Yes _______ No
4. If yes, specifically, what kind of volunteering have you done at your church?:
5. If you have been told that you must stop volunteering at a church as a result of HB 1059,
Who told you that you must stop volunteering? _________________
When were you told that you must stop volunteering? _______________
What was the reason that was given for ceasing your volunteering? ______________
6. What are the name and the location of the church where you have in the past or currently volunteer?
Name of church: ___________________________
Location of church: ___________________________
(please provide address if known, otherwise please provide town/city and county)
Please include your
Date of Conviction:
All the best,
Sara, Sarah, Lisa, James and Mica
Southern Center for Human Rights
83 Poplar St.
Atlanta, GA 30303
VA - Opening Statement of Senator Jim Webb: "Mass Incarceration in the United States: At What Cost?"
View the article here
Joint Economic Committee Hearing
“I am committed to working on a solution that is both responsive to our needs for law and order, and fairer to those ensnared by this system.”
Washington, DC – Senator Jim Webb conducted a Joint Economic Committee (JEC) hearing to explore the steep increase in the U.S. prison population and the economic and social costs of mass incarceration. His opening statement follows:
I would like to thank Chairman Schumer for agreeing to hold this important hearing and allowing me the opportunity to chair it. I would also like to thank our witnesses for appearing today. Following my remarks, I would ask Vice-Chair Maloney and Senator Brownback to make their opening statements.
Over the course of the period from the mid-1970s until today, the United States has embarked on one of the largest public policy experiments in our history, yet this experiment remains shockingly absent from public debate: the United States now imprisons a higher percentage of its citizens than any other country in the world.
In the name of “getting tough on crime,” there are now 2.1 million Americans in federal, state, and local prisons and jails -- more people than the populations of New Mexico, West Virginia, or several other states. Compared to our democratic, advanced market economy counterparts, the United States has more people in prison by several orders of magnitude.
All tolled, more than 7 million Americans are under some form of correction supervision, including probation and parole.
America’s incarceration rate raises several serious questions. These include: the correlation between mass imprisonment and crime rates, the impact of incarceration on minority communities and women, the economic costs of the prison system, criminal justice policy, and transitioning ex-offenders back into their communities and into productive employment. Equally important, the prison system today calls into question the effects on our society more broadly.
As Winston Churchill noted in 1910, “The mood and temper of the public in regard to the treatment of crime and criminals is one of the most unfailing tests of the civilization of any country.” With the world’s largest prison population, our prisons test the limits of our democracy and push the boundaries of our moral identity.
The growth in the prison population is only nominally related to crime rates. Just last week in the Washington Post, the deputy director of the Bureau of Justice Statistics stated that “the growth [in the incarceration rate] wasn’t really about increase[ed] crime but how we chose to respond to crime.”
The steep increase in the number of people in prison is driven, according to most experts, by changes in drug policy and tougher sentencing, and not necessarily an increase in crime. Also, the composition of prison admissions has shifted toward less serious offenses: parole violations and drug offenses. Nearly 6 in 10 persons in state prison for a drug offense have no history of violence or significant selling activity. In 2005, four out of five drug arrests were for possession and only one out of five were for sales.
Is incarcerating low-level drug offenders working, particularly given recidivism rates?
The racial composition of America’s prisons is alarming. Although African Americans constitute 14 percent of regular drug users, they are 37 percent of those arrested for drug offenses, and 56 percent of persons in state prisons for drug crimes. African Americans serve nearly as much time in federal prisons for drug offenses as whites do for violent crimes.
A black male who does not finish high school now has a 60 percent chance of going to jail. One who has finished high school has a 30 percent chance. We have reached a point where the principal nexus between young African-American men and our society is increasingly the criminal justice system.
Moreover, we are spending enormous amounts of money to maintain the prison system. The combined expenditures of local, state, and federal governments for law enforcement and corrections personnel total over $200 billion. Prison construction and operation has become sought after, if uncertain, tools of economic growth for rural communities.
Are there ways to spend less money, enhance public safety, and make a fairer prison system?
Having such a large prison population also has significant employment and productivity implications. The economic output of prisoners is mostly lost to society while they are imprisoned. These negative productivity effects continue after release. As we’ve gotten tough on crime, we’ve given up on rehabilitating offenders. And we’ve created additional barriers to reentry with “invisible punishments.” These include ineligibility for certain government benefits, such as housing, public assistance, or student loans. It is no longer possible to pay your debt to society.
We want to keep bad people off our streets. We want to break the back of gangs, and we want to cut down on violent behavior. But there’s something else going on when we’re locking up such a high percentage of our people, marking them at an early age and in many cases eliminating their chances for a productive life as full citizens. It will take years of energy to address these problems. But I am committed to working on a solution that is both responsive to our needs for law and order, and fairer to those ensnared by this system.
I welcome the thoughts of our witnesses today regarding these important topics, and a continuing national dialogue to address these enormous policy issues.
I would like to introduce today’s witnesses:
Professor Glenn Loury is the Merton P. Stoltz Professor of the Social Sciences at the Department of Economics at Brown University. He has taught previously at Boston, Harvard and Northwestern Universities, and the University of Michigan. Mr. Loury is a distinguished academic economist who has contributed to a variety of areas in applied microeconomic theory and written on racial inequality.
Professor Bruce Western is the Director of the Multidisciplinary Program in Inequality and Social Policy at the Kennedy School of Government. He taught at Princeton University from 1993 to 2007. Dr. Western’s work has focused on the role of incarceration in social and economic inequality in American society. He is the author of Punishment and Inequality in America, a study of the growth and social impact of the American penal system.
Alphonso Albert is the Director of Second Chances, in Norfolk, Virginia, a program designed to provide comprehensive support services that lead to full-time employment and social stability for those individuals impacted by the stigma of being labeled “ex-offender.” Prior to working with the Second Chances Program, Mr. Albert served as the Assistant Director and Business Liaison for the City of Norfolk’s Enterprise Community initiative, Norfolk Works Inc.
Michael P. Jacobson is the director of the Vera Institute of Justice. He is the author of Downsizing Prisons: How to Reduce Crime and End Mass Incarceration. Prior to joining Vera, he was a professor at the City University of New York Graduate Center and the John Jay College of Criminal Justice. He has served as New York City’s Correction Commissioner, Probation Commissioner, and Deputy Budget Director.
Pat Nolan is the Vice-President of Prison Fellowship, where he focuses on efforts to ensure that offenders are better prepared to live healthy, productive, law-abiding lives on their release. He served fifteen years in the California State Assembly, four of them as the Assembly Republican Leader. Mr. Nolan has appeared before Congress to testify on matters such as prison work programs, juvenile justice and religious freedom.
Witnesses should please limit their remarks to five minutes, although their entire statements will be entered into the record. After all the witnesses have presented their testimony, we will move to questions.
View the article here | Other Children Ruined By These Laws
Imagine how DeMarcus Blackwell felt when he was told that his son Chris had engaged in "sexual contact and/or sexual harassment" at school. School officials in Waco, Texas, said Chris rubbed his face in the chest of a female teachers' aide.
Well, before you can imagine this father's reaction, you need to know one other fact: His son was 4 years old when the "sexual" incident occurred.
What got Chris into trouble was giving the aide a hug. Only after DeMarcus strenuously complained did the school change the boy's record from "sexual harassment" to "inappropriate physical contact."
At least Chris wasn't sent to jail, as were 13-year-old Cory Mashburn and 12-year-old Ryan Cornelison of McMinnville, Ore. The boys were charged with five counts of felony sex abuse in the first degree because of their conduct toward some 13-year-old girls at their middle school.
Cory's mom, Tracie, got the terrible phone call. "He had been touching some girls, and we needed to get down to the juvenile detention. They were arresting him," she told me.
Police officer Marshall Roache read the boys their Miranda rights. "Then he asked me if I understood them, but I didn't," Cory told me. "I thought you had to say yes. So I said yes."
What had the boys done?
"It was just a game," Cory said. "You'd slap somebody, they'd slap another person, you got slapped, and you slapped somebody else."
The "victims" of the felony sex abuse don't consider themselves victims. "Every Friday, we would have Slap Butt Day, and pretty much we would just go around slapping people's butts," said Megan Looney, one of the girls involved.
Officer Roache also claimed that the boys "dry humped" the girls. But the girls say all the boys did was "party boy": "It's just like a really funny dance," said Madie, another of the girls. "All the boys do it. They, like, bounce up and down, and it's really funny because they look really retarded."
The boys didn't touch the girls when "party boy" dancing, but Officer Roache still called it dry humping in his police report.
Madie said that missed the mark. "They don't think of it as, like, they're trying to hump us or something. They're just like trying to act stupid.
"We don't think they should be punished for it."
But punished they were. The boys were locked up for six days. The police "pushed us up against the wall. … They strip-searched us and then they put us in our cells," Cory told me. Ryan added: "Every time a lawyer, somebody, came to talk to us, we had to get strip-searched afterwards." He said this happened six or seven times.
The first night, their parents waited at the jail but couldn't see them or even talk to them on the phone. They didn't get to see their boys until two days later.
That's jail policy, the district attorney told their lawyer. No communications until visiting day.
After six days in jail, the boys were released but banned from school and from seeing many of their friends. The district attorney, who wouldn't talk to "20/20," demanded a trial. It took half a year before a judge would finally hear a motion to dismiss charges.
By that time, all the girls had signed affidavits saying they didn't think the boys should be prosecuted. The charges were dropped.
The district attorney says she'd do it again because she did nothing wrong.
Give me a break.
Genuine sexual harassment is nasty, but it's also nasty when politically correct prosecutors and timid lawsuit-fearing school administrators jail kids for small infractions.
"There's been a disturbing increase in the trend of arresting children for minor infractions that often would have been taken care of … by simply calling in the parent," says Jakada Imani of the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights. "Criminalizing our young people at younger and younger ages … has to be deeply troubling for anybody concerned about this country's future."
Adults should take a course in common sense before they upset more kids' lives over things like a hug or a silly game.
This is from Senator John Douglas who is a state senator, and he doesn't want to hear from me. Sorry, I am an American citizen and he is suppose to be representing me/us. These are the hateful people we have in office? He didn't even ask me any questions or even know who I am. I never said anything about me being a sex offender, he is assuming I am because I am speaking out!!! I sent him this blog item.
AND THESE ARE THE PEOPLE REPRESENTING THE PEOPLE???
1: to harass or punish in a manner designed to injure, grieve, or afflict; specifically : to cause to suffer because of belief
2: to annoy with persistent or urgent approaches (as attacks, pleas, or importunities)
I guess its tough being a sex offender. No one seems to like having you in their neighborhood, you start to feel persecuted, the cops watch your moves, everything you do is under a microscope.
Get used to it.
Please take me off your mailing list.
Sen John Douglas (Jfdouglas@aol.com)
So I then sent him another reply, which was:
I am sorry you feel that way. And you are a state Senator and you are suppose to represent me and the people of Georgia.
Also, your email is public, so if I have a complaint I want you to look at and consider, then I have every right to send you an email.
Also, like everyone else, you assume I am a sex offender just because I send out information about the Ohio protest we are going to have. Why do you assume I am a sex offender? Just because I am speaking out? Which the last I checked, is my right!
Why are you not working on monitoring those who are a threat, which is predators? Study after study shows sex offenders are LESS LIKELY to commit another sex crime, and politicians and the media keep spreading lies and myths. And buffer zones could be 50 or 100 miles and if a predator was intent on committing another crime, do you think ANYTHING would prevent that? I was just trying to get you to think.
When will people ever realize no matter how tough on crime, all the zero tolerance, all the registries in the world will not prevent a murderer from murdering, a thief from stealing, a dealer from dealing, a user from using, a rapist from raping.
Thanks for the sarcastic reply, which I did not ask for.
This will be the last email you receive from me. I did not mean to get you angry or upset. I was just letting you know what is going on about these draconian laws.
And his reply:
It was my understanding your email came from an Ohio resident. If that is wrong, I apologize. However, that does not diminish my disagreement with you on the way sex offenders are being handled in Georgia.
Posted by a friend!
Civil Rights laws provided for in the United States code
Conspiracy Against Rights
Laws: Cases and Codes : U.S. Code : Title 18 : Section 241
This statute makes it unlawful for two or more persons to conspire to injure, oppress, threaten, or intimidate any person of any state, territory or district in the free exercise or enjoyment of any right or privilege secured to him/her by the Constitution or the laws of the United States, (or because of his/her having exercised the same).
It further makes it unlawful for two or more persons to go in disguise on the highway or on the premises of another with the intent to prevent or hinder his/her free exercise or enjoyment of any rights so secured.
Punishment varies from a fine or imprisonment of up to ten years, or both; and if death results, or if such acts include kidnapping or an attempt to kidnap, aggravated sexual abuse or an attempt to commit aggravated sexual abuse, or an attempt to kill, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned for any term of years, or for life, or may be sentenced to death.
Title 18, U.S.C., Section 242
Deprivation of Rights Under Color of Law
Laws: Cases and Codes : U.S. Code : Title 18 : Section 242
This statute makes it a crime for any person acting under color of law, statute, ordinance, regulation, or custom to willfully deprive or cause to be deprived from any person those rights, privileges, or immunities secured or protected by the Constitution and laws of the U.S.
This law further prohibits a person acting under color of law, statute, ordinance, regulation or custom to willfully subject or cause to be subjected any person to different punishments, pains, or penalties, than those prescribed for punishment of citizens on account of such person being an alien or by reason of his/her color or race.
Acts under "color of any law" include acts not only done by federal, state, or local officials within the bounds or limits of their lawful authority, but also acts done without and beyond the bounds of their lawful authority; provided that, in order for unlawful acts of any official to be done under "color of any law," the unlawful acts must be done while such official is purporting or pretending to act in the performance of his/her official duties. This definition includes, in addition to law enforcement officials, individuals such as Mayors, Council persons, Judges, Nursing Home Proprietors, Security Guards, etc., persons who are bound by laws, statutes ordinances, or customs.
Punishment varies from a fine or imprisonment of up to one year, or both, and if bodily injury results or if such acts include the use, attempted use, or threatened use of a dangerous weapon, explosives, or fire shall be fined or imprisoned up to ten years or both, and if death results, or if such acts include kidnapping or an attempt to kidnap, aggravated sexual abuse or an attempt to commit aggravated sexual abuse, or an attempt to kill, shall be fined under this title, or imprisoned for any term of years or for life, or both, or may be sentenced to death.
Title 18, U.S.C., Section 245
Federally Protected Activities
Laws: Cases and Codes : U.S. Code : Title 18 : Section 245
1) This statute prohibits willful injury, intimidation, or interference, or attempt to do so, by force or threat of force of any person or class of persons because of their activity as:
a) A voter, or person qualifying to vote...;
b) a participant in any benefit, service, privilege, program, facility, or activity provided or administered by the United States;
c) an applicant for federal employment or an employee by the federal government;
d) a juror or prospective juror in federal court; and
e) a participant in any program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.
2) Prohibits willful injury, intimidation, or interference or attempt to do so, by force or threat of force of any person because of race, color, religion, or national origin and because of his/her activity as:
a) A student or applicant for admission to any public school or public College;
b) a participant in any benefit, service, privilege, program, facility, or activity provided or administered by a state or local government;
c) an applicant for private or state employment, private or state employee; a member or applicant for membership in any labor organization or hiring hall; or an applicant for employment through any employment agency, labor organization or hiring hall;
d) a juror or prospective juror in state court;
e) a traveler or user of any facility of interstate commerce or common carrier; or
f) a patron of any public accommodation, including hotels, motels, restaurants, lunchrooms, bars, gas stations, theaters...or any other establishment which serves the public and which is principally engaged in selling food or beverages for consumption on the premises.
3) Prohibits interference by force or threat of force against any person because he/she is or has been, or in order to intimidate such person or any other person or class of persons from participating or affording others the opportunity or protection to so participate, or lawfully aiding or encouraging other persons to participate in any of the benefits or activities listed in items (1) and (2), above without discrimination as to race, color, religion, or national origin.
Punishment varies from a fine or imprisonment of up to one year, or both, and if bodily injury results or if such acts include the use, attempted use, or threatened use of a dangerous weapon, explosives, or fire shall be fined or imprisoned up to ten years or both, and if death results or if such acts include kidnapping or an attempt to kidnap, aggravated sexual abuse or an attempt to commit aggravated sexual abuse, or an attempt to kill, shall be subject to imprisonment for any term of years or for life or may be sentenced to death.
|18 USC Sec. 1203|
TITLE 18 - CRIMES AND CRIMINAL PROCEDURE
PART I - CRIMES
CHAPTER 55 - KIDNAPPING
Laws: Cases and Codes : U.S. Code : Title 18 : Section 1203
Title 42 USC Section 1983
Sec. 1983. - Civil action for deprivation of rights
Every person who, under color of any statute, ordinance, regulation, custom, or usage, of any State or Territory or the District of Columbia, subjects, or causes to be subjected, any citizen of the United States or other person within the jurisdiction thereof to the deprivation of any rights, privileges, or immunities secured by the Constitution and laws, shall be liable to the party injured in an action at law, suit in equity, or other proper proceeding for redress, except that in any action brought against a judicial officer for an act or omission taken in such officer's judicial capacity, injunctive relief shall not be granted unless a declaratory decree was violated or declaratory relief was unavailable. For the purposes of this section, any Act of Congress applicable exclusively to the District of Columbia shall be considered to be a statute of the District of Columbia
Title 42, U.S.C., Section 14141
Pattern and Practice
Laws: Cases and Codes : U.S. Code : Title 42 : Section 14141
This civil statute was a provision within the Crime Control Act of 1994 and makes it unlawful for any governmental authority, or agent thereof, or any person acting on behalf of a governmental authority, to engage in a pattern or practice of conduct by law enforcement officers or by officials or employees of any governmental agency with responsibility for the administration of juvenile justice or the incarceration of juveniles that deprives persons of rights, privileges, or immunities secured or protected by the Constitution or laws of the United States.
Whenever the Attorney General has reasonable cause to believe that a violation has occurred, the Attorney General, for or in the name of the United States, may in a civil action obtain appropriate equitable and declaratory relief to eliminate the pattern or practice.
Types of misconduct covered include, among other things:
1. Excessive Force
2. Discriminatory Harassment
3. False Arrest
4. Coercive Sexual Conduct
5. Unlawful Stops, Searches, or Arrests