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Pilar Stofega created phony profiles of former boyfriend's current wife
WATERFORD - A 34-year-old woman has been charged with using the Internet to try to get revenge on an old boyfriend by breaking up his marriage. Pilar Stofega has been charged with second-degree harassment and breach of peace and released on $2,500 bond.
Waterford police say she created phony profiles of the former boyfriend's current wife on some adult Web sites that included the wife's home and work phone numbers and high school yearbook picture.
Stofega said she did to it "to be vindictive, knowing that the profiles would create marital problems between" the victim and her husband, according to court documents.
The plot came to life when strange men started calling a Waterford woman's house over the summer, saying they had seen her profile on an adult Web site.
The man Stofega had dated eight years ago used his own computer to investigate and discovered someone had created a profile for his wife on several Internet sites, according to court records.
Police say the husband did more online investigating and was able to find out that the person behind the phony profiles of his wife was the woman he dated in 1999. He passed the information on to Waterford police, leading to Stofega's arrest last week.
Waterford police got a court order to seize Stofega's Internet records. They reviewed the account records before searching her house in late September.
Stofega was at the house when police served the warrant. Officers said she provided them with a sworn written statement in which she admitted to intentionally creating the profiles in the victim's likeness on the adult Web sites.
Stofega is scheduled to appear in New London Superior Court on Monday. Court records did not list an attorney and her phone number was not listed.
Friday, October 26, 2007
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PORTLAND — A Portland police officer has lost his job for groping a homeless woman.
In a plea deal, Matthew Kohnke, 33, pleaded no contest Friday to official misconduct charges.
He was sentenced to 24 months of probation and community service.
As part of the deal, he resigned from the force and lost his state law enforcement certification.
In a federal lawsuit filed earlier this week, a woman said she was living in a homeless camp in southeast Portland when Kohnke molested her.
She said he asked if he could search her for drugs or weapons, and reached down her pants. She was not arrested or cited.
Court papers say three other women have complained about Kohnke.
He was on the force nine years.
This verse puzzled some women in a Bible study and they wondered what this statement meant about the character and nature of God.
One of the women offered to find out the process of refining silver and get back to the group at their next Bible Study.
That week, the woman called a silversmith and made an appointment to watch him at work. She didn't mention anything about the reason for her interest beyond her curiosity about the process of refining Silver.
As she watched the silversmith, he held a piece of silver over the fire and let it heat up. He explained that in refining silver, one needed to hold the silver in the middle of the fire where the flames were hottest as to burn away all the impurities.
The woman thought about God holding us in such a hot spot; then she thought again about the verse that says: 'He sits as a refiner and purifier of silver.'
She asked the silversmith if it was true that he had to sit there in front of the fire the whole time.
The man answered that yes, he not only had to sit there holding the silver, but he had to keep his eyes on the silver the entire time it was in the fire. If the silver was left a moment too long in the flames, it would be destroyed.
The woman was silent for a moment. Then she asked the silversmith, 'How do you know when the silver is fully refined?'
He smiled at her and answered, 'Oh, that's easy -- when I see my image in it.'
If today you are feeling the heat of the fire , remember that God has his eye on you and will keep watching you until He sees His image in you.
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SHAWNEE - Officials with TDK Ferrites in Shawnee say a worker killed in an industrial accident apparently committed suicide.
Joe Pennington was found crushed in a machine Oct. 14.
Plant president Ron Stravlo says an investigation by the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration has found TDK wasn't at fault.
Stravlo says it appears Pennington bypassed the safety equipment and climbed about seven feet up the machinery. He says Pennington then was able to bend his body inside the machine and use his foot to activate it and was crushed.
Stravlo says a medical examination found the cause of death to be suffocation.
Pennington was working at TDK under the alias Lawrence Joe Fox and was a wanted sex offender in Arizona but officials didn't learn his true identity until after his death.
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VICTORIA — A former Victoria County sheriff has been charged with aggravated sexual assault and criminal solicitation of a minor with a handgun.
Former Sheriff Mike Ratcliff also was charged with criminal conspiracy in charges made public Friday.
Ratcliff was arrested Thursday, the same day he was the subject of a grand jury proceeding, the Victoria Advocate reported. Ratcliff currently is a top administrator with the district attorney's office.
Contacted by cell phone by the newspaper, Ratcliff said: "I'd like to talk. I will as soon as it's possible."
A grand jury subpoena obtained by the newspaper requested that a Victoria police officer bring all video, audio and notes from an investigation into Ratcliff.
City attorney David Smith said police have been aware of the investigation for several months. The Texas Department of Public Safety and the FBI have taken lead roles in the case. Smith said the case could send shockwaves throughout the justice system in Victoria.
"It's a very serious matter," Smith said. "There has been a cover-up."
Ratcliff was elected Victoria County sheriff in November 1992 and served three terms until 2004. Earlier this year, he became District Attorney Steve Tyler's chief of staff.
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A former sheriff’s deputy was found guilty of sexually assaulting a 6-year-old girl and sentenced Wednesday to two life sentences plus 20 years.
Roger Dale Gentry, 69, a longtime sheriff’s investigator in Cass County, will serve the sentences one after another.
The case was initially moved from Cass County to Bowie County because of pretrial publicity. A trial began at the Bowie County Courthouse in New Boston in late September. That trial ended abruptly because of issues with the jury, prompting 5th District Judge Ralph Burgess to declare a mistrial.
A second change of venue was granted by Burgess after the mistrial. Gentry ultimately faced a jury in Franklin County. The trial began in Mount Vernon last week.
“When I told her, she just broke down in tears,” said the victim’s mother. “We still have some things to overcome, but this is a step in the right direction.”
Gentry sexually assaulted the girl in various ways during 2005 while baby-sitting her. He was convicted Wednesday on two counts of aggravated sexual assault of a child and received life sentences for both. For a charge of indecency with a child with sexual...
ALBANY — A longtime Albany police officer is appealing disciplinary action stemming from sexual harassment accusations by two Albany Police Department recruits.
Lt. Hosea Miller, a 20-year veteran of the department, was disciplined Wednesday after a female officer filed a complaint, charging that he had inappropriate contact with her. A second officer has said that Miller made inappropriate comments to her.
Thursday, Miller had a meeting with city officials to appeal the action.
Shirley Sherrod, Miller’s sister and family spokesperson, said that the claims levied against her brother were ridiculous, labeling the action political.
Sherrod said that the family would take any steps necessary to clear Miller’s good name.
“This is going to get into Superior Court,” Sherrod said, “if that’s what it takes to clear his name.”
Sherrod said that the claim stems from an attempt by the recruit to be released from her contract with the city so that she could go to work with another law enforcement agency.
“He keeps saying that he didn’t know that he had so many enemies on the police force,” Sherrod said.
In an e-mailed statement issued Thursday, Albany Police Public Relations Officer Phyllis Banks-Whitley wrote that an investigation had taken place.
“An extensive investigation was conducted after a female recruit brought allegations of sexual harassment against Lt. Hosea Miller. During the course of the investigation, another female recruit made a complaint that Miller made inappropriate comments toward her, but she had no interest in filing a formal complaint,” Banks-Whitley wrote. “After learning of the allegations, Miller was immediately transferred out of Recruitment and Retention and assigned other duties.”
Banks-Whitley said that a demotion to sergeant had been recommended by police officials, but that a rumored 30-day suspension had not been recommended.
According to Banks-Whitley, Miller was notified on Aug. 27 that Chief James Younger was contemplating demoting him for violating the APD’s standard operating procedures.
Specifically, police officials say that he contributed to a hostile work environment, violated personnel policy and procedures, was insubordinate, willfully violated department procedures and took part in sexual harassment.
Albany City Manager Alfred Lott has 10 days to make a decision on the appeal.
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GALLATIN - A Gallatin High School teacher has been charged with three counts of statutory rape by an authority figure.
Holly Hatcher left the Sumner County Jail Thursday night after posting a $15,000 bond.
Students said she was hired this year as the new volleyball coach.
A Sumner County Schools spokesperson did not release any information about the arrest, but confirmed that Hatcher is under investigation.
Hatcher wasn't placed on administrative leave.
She was not arrested at the school.
Police did not release any information about the victim or any details about Hatcher's alleged actions.
"It's definitely surprising, something really negative to hear about and disappointing," said Lauren Groves, a Gallatin High School student.
"It's shocking and everything, but people will probably put this on Gallatin and say it's Gallatin, but really, this could happen at any school," said Lyndsi Groves.
Legal sources said the charge usually pertains to cases in which the victim is a student. It also applies if the victim is a minor over whom Hatcher had some other type of supervisory role.
The police department and school district will have a joint news conference Friday morning about the case.
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Police arrested a man after finding him in a government building restroom lying beside an inflatable doll.
- Oh he wanted to be caught, or mentally retarded or something.
Cedar Rapids police charged Craig S. McCullough, 47, with indecent exposure after finding him Wednesday afternoon in the public restroom. He had his pants down and was "lying next to an anatomically correct inflatable doll," according to the criminal complaint.
He was found by an agent of the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency, which has an office near the restroom.
McCullough has a lengthy criminal record, including a 2004 conviction for burglarizing Just For Me bridal boutique in Cedar Rapids. Shortly after the burglary, officers found McCullough in a nearby alley, carrying a mannequin wearing a bridal dress.
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A man has been placed on the sex offenders’ register after being caught trying to have sex with a bicycle.
Robert Stewart was discovered in his room by two cleaners at the Aberley House Hostel in Ayr, south west Scotland, in October last year.
On Wednesday Mr Stewart admitted to sexual breach of the peace in Ayr Sheriff Court, where depute fiscal Gail Davidson described how he had been found by the hostel workers.
She said: "They knocked on the door several times and there was no reply.
"They used a master key to unlock the door and they then observed the accused wearing only a white T-shirt, naked from the waist down.
"The accused was holding the bike and moving his hips back and forth as if to simulate sex."
Both witnesses, who were extremely shocked, notified the hotel manager, who in turn alerted the police.
Mr Stewart was placed on the sex offenders’ register but his sentence was deferred until next month.
He is not the first man to be convicted of a sexual offence involving an inanimate object, however.
Karl Watkins, an electrician, was jailed for having sex with pavements in Redditch, Worcs, in 1993.
View the article here | Child Porn Article
ST. GEORGE — For the second time in less than six weeks, a city employee on Wednesday taped a notice to the door of St. George's tiny city hall.
Once again, it announced a public servant's downfall — the mayor was on leave, just days after a drug arrest.
Once again, residents in this little hamlet just south of St. Louis were shaking their heads.
And once again, city leaders were being asked about how the town's image would recover from the blow.
"It's too bad that it happened — a couple of black eyes in the past couple of months," said Heather Hediger, the city's acting mayor.
Mayor Harold Goodman, 64, was arrested at his apartment Monday night on suspicion of misdemeanor marijuana possession. The incident occurred less than two months after a young man videotaped a St. George police sergeant berating him and threatening to arrest him on fictional charges. The incident appeared on several websites and made national news.
The mayor has taken a voluntarily leave of absence while he is being investigated, said Hediger, president of the board of aldermen. Hediger automatically became acting mayor when Goodman stepped aside.
Goodman, a retired police officer, claimed to be using the marijuana to treat Crohn's Disease, a chronic inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract, according to Police Chief Scott Urhig.
"When he has flare-ups, apparently he becomes very nauseated like a chemo patient would," said Uhrig, who was acting as a spokesman for the mayor. "He wasn't a persistent user of (marijuana)."
Of the 12 states that have medical marijuana laws, four — Hawaii, Montana, Rhode Island and Washington — specifically list Crohn's Disease as an illness lawfully treated by the drug.
St. Louis County Police went to Goodman's residence to serve a search warrant when they discovered the small amount of marijuana. Neither they, nor Uhrig, would say what was sought in the warrant. Goodman was released while charges are pending.
The mayor's leave of absence is indefinite, Hediger said. Goodman could not be reached for comment.
Goodman wouldn't automatically lose his job if he is convicted of the misdemeanor. However, the board could vote to remove him with a two-thirds majority if the aldermen deemed he could not perform his duties, Hediger said.
A special meeting is being held at 7:30 p.m. tonight so residents in the community of about 1,500 can discuss the issue with aldermen.
Long known for being a speed trap, St. George sits just off Reavis Barracks Road west of Interstate 55 in South St. Louis County. It is home to just three businesses — an Imo's Pizza, a flooring business, and a business that sells and services cash registers.
The city consists almost entirely of 1940s and '50s style red brick bungalows. The city hall is a small converted house with gray siding.
Some residents even refer to St. George as a subdivision rather than a city. Several said they were discouraged by the latest events.
Gary Hardesty, 65, sat in his living room shaking his head at the town's latest embarrassment.
"It's one thing after another," he said. "People ask where you live and they say, oh, that's where the speed trap is, or oh, that's where the police harassed the young man. Now it's going to be: That's where the mayor was caught with narcotics."
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Press Release from Supreme Court
Full Supreme Court Ruling
Another Article from AJC here
Praise the Lord! Victory! Video available at the site.
ATLANTA -- The Georgia Supreme Court on Friday ordered that Genarlow Wilson be released from prison, ruling 4-3 that his sentence for a teen sex conviction was cruel and unusual punishment.
Wilson was convicted in 2005 of having oral sex with a consenting 15-year-old girl when he was 17.
He has served two years in prison.
Wilson's attorney, B.J. Bernstein, told CNN that he can be released as soon as a Monroe County judge issues a new order and serves it to the attorney general.
"That's coming at any moment," Bernstein said, adding that she called the prison warden, who has informed Wilson of his pending release.
"We want him home," Bernstein said. "In the end it shows this: That the courts can work, the courts do work."
At the time of Wilson's conviction, Georgia law made the crime punishable by 10 years in prison. The law was later amended, making such conduct "punishable by no more than a year in prison and no sex offender registration," the court noted.
But those changes were not made retroactive, so they did not apply to Wilson.
The Georgia high court upheld the decision of the Monroe County judge. In a 48-page opinion, the court said the "severe" punishment Wilson received and his mandated sex offender registration make "no measurable contribution to acceptable goals of punishment."
Friday's decision came after a protracted legal battle that has galvanized international attention and drawn the involvement of civil rights leaders. Partly as a result of Wilson's conviction, state legislators changed the law to make such consensual conduct between minors a misdemeanor, rather than a felony.
The case revolves around a New Year's Eve party outside Atlanta in 2003 when Wilson engaged in the sex act with the girl.
Under a now-changed Georgia law, Wilson was convicted of felony aggravated child molestation. He was acquitted on a second charge of raping a 17-year-old girl -- who prosecutors maintained was too intoxicated at the party to consent.
The 10-year sentence was mandatory under the law.
In the decision, Chief Justice Leah Ward Sears wrote that changes in the law "represent a seismic shift in the legislature's view of the gravity of oral sex between two willing teenage participants."
"Although society has a significant interest in protecting children from premature sexual activity, we must acknowledge that Wilson's crime does not rise to the level of culpability of adults who prey on children," the court's majority found.
"For the law to punish Wilson as it would an adult, with the extraordinarily harsh punishment of 10 years in prison without the possibility of probation or parole, appears to be grossly disproportionate to his crime," the majority opinion concluded.
The dissent noted that the Georgia Legislature had made clear that the changes in the law were not to be applied retroactively.
Justice George Carley, writing for the dissenting justices, said, "The General Assembly made the express decision that he cannot benefit from the subsequent legislative determination to reduce the sentence for commission of that crime from felony to misdemeanor status."
The majority countered that it was not applying the 2006 amendment retroactively, but instead factoring that "into its determination that Wilson's punishment is cruel and unusual," the court said in a news release.
The court said this kind of decision is unusual: "The majority opinion points out that this court rarely overturns a sentence on cruel and unusual grounds. But twice before, it did so following a legislative change."
Monroe County Superior Court judge ruled that Wilson's punishment was cruel and unusual and voided it on constitutional grounds.
The judge reduced the sentence to one year and said Wilson should not be put on Georgia's sex offender registry, as the old law required.
Wilson's jubilant attorneys had hoped that ruling would free him from state prison. But shortly after it was handed down, Georgia Attorney General Thurbert Baker announced he would appeal the decision, a move that kept Wilson behind bars.
The high court said unanimously that the decision to deny Wilson bail was correct.
Wilson's plight drew pleas for his release, including from former President Carter, an ex-Georgia governor, and even some of the jurors who convicted him.
Legislation that would make the change in Georgia's child molestation law retroactive to free Wilson failed to win approval earlier this year.
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MANSFIELD -- Mayor Barton Scott (blog) plans to start a petition drive Saturday for even tougher sex offender regulations, less than a week after the City Council rejected his latest effort to create an ordinance.
Scott's proposal would not only limit where certain registered sex offenders -- those convicted of crimes against minors younger than 14 -- can live but also where they can visit and loiter. It would also include restrictions to keep offenders away from children on Halloween and would forbid people to rent homes or apartments to them.
- Damn, where do you want them to live? You are just pandering to the public to look like you are doing something. They've already knocked it down several times, when are you going to give up?
Scott and his volunteers have 30 days to collect the 930 signatures required to force the council to either approve his version of the ordinance or set it for a public vote, likely in May 2008.
"I'm very saddened it has come to this," said Scott, who was elected in May on a platform that included promises for a sex offender ordinance. "I've done everything within my power to compromise with the City Council."
The council voted 4-2 on Monday to kill debate on the issue for the third time in three months. That version would not have allowed registered convicts of sex crimes against minors to live within 1,000 feet of a school, playground, church or other place children often gather. State law currently has a 1,000-foot buffer, which applies to sex offenders who are on probation or parole.
Scott's version calls for 2,000-foot buffers and would measure that distance also from the estimated 1,550 school bus stops in the city. Scott said that would limit offenders mostly to remote, undeveloped areas in south Mansfield.
A majority of the council and the city's public safety director have argued against residency limits, saying they would not protect children and could discourage offenders from registering with the city, making them harder for police to track.
Councilman Mike Leyman said he believes that existing state law, particularly recently enacted tougher sentences for child molesters, are sufficient protections.
But Mike Stanton, a father of two young children who plans to volunteer for the petition drive, said the ordinance could help.
"I think the more we can do to protect our little ones, the better," he said.
Some council members worry that strict limits would invite expensive lawsuits.
"The citizens can't afford to spend a million dollars defending something that's way out there," Councilman Darryl Haynes said. Scott said all provisions in his ordinance were taken from existing ordinances in other cities. And he had the Liberty Legal Institute, a nonprofit law firm that focuses on religious freedoms and free-speech rights, review the petition and ordinance.
"It's highly unlikely that a lawsuit would occur," Scott said. "But we cannot be afraid of our own shadows when it comes to protecting our children."
Proposed Mansfield sex offender ordinance
Residency: Registered sex offenders convicted of crimes against children younger than 14 would have to live at least 2,000 feet from churches, playgrounds, schools, arcades, school bus stops, homeowner association parks and pools and other places children congregate.
The state law applies only to offenders who are on probation or parole. The city ordinance would apply to all offenders, including those who have completed probation or parole. Violating state law is a felony. Violating the proposed city ordinance would be a misdemeanor punishable by a $500 fine.
Visiting: Offenders could not set foot on any site listed as a place children gather in the ordinance. They also could not loiter within 300 feet of any such site.
Halloween: On Oct. 30-31 each year, offenders could not turn their front porch light on, decorate their yard or give candy to children.
- Why the 30th? Halloween is on the 31st?
Notification: Police would mail alerts annually to residents who live within 500 feet of a sex offender's home, and mail additional alerts whenever a sex offender moves nearby or changes address within the neighborhood. Police would also maintain a Web site providing updated photos and information on sex offenders in the city. The police launched such a Web site this week, but Scott said he wanted to require it in the ordinance so that future budget cuts, for example, would not affect the Web site.
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DALLAS -- A national movie rental chain has been busted for giving teenagers access to adult videos.
Movie Gallery said it does sell adult videos in some of its stores, but added its policy forbids selling to minors.
Critics of adult videos at Movie Gallery stores said they sent an underage girl shopping at a location in Corsicana with an undercover camera and caught the company violating its policy.
Chasity Hodges' identification card says she is 17, but hidden camera video shows her entering the Movie Gallery back room that states you must be 18 and show identification.
Hodges said she purchased adult videos with no questions asked.
"I think if they are going to do it, they need to sell it to people that's of age," said Chasity's father Ricky Hodges.
Neighbors in Corsicana agreed.
"Oh, my goodness, I'm surprised at that, that's very disturbing," Paula Sullins.
"They should be checking for it to make sure that they are 18 or older," said Linda Andrews.
A spokesman for Movie Gallery said that employees who violate policy are terminated and the person captured on camera was terminated.
He added that because the 17-year-old taking part in the sting was pregnant, it made her seem older.
Hodges said she went to the store twice, and the same thing happened with two clerks.
"I purchased it, he never asked to see ID and I left, I came back another day and the same thing happened that day," Hodges said.
The store released a statement on the matter:
"Family entertainment is our business, providing more that 99 percent of our revenues, and notwithstanding the questionable methods used to make this video and the motives of those behind it we certainly regret this unfortunate incident."
Corsicana police said they have launched an investigation.
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FARMINGTON - With the high profile kidnapping and sexual assault of two boys in the St. Louis area, and the popularity of shows like “To Catch a Predator,” sex offenders are getting a lot of attention. According to the U.S. Department of Justice, people convicted of a sex crime are four times more likely to reoffend, compared with people convicted of other crimes.
- Why don't you post the rest of what they say? You cannot pick one sentence to further your agenda. Here is what that actually says, here:
- Of the 272,111 persons released from prisons in 15 States in 1994, an estimated 67.5% were rearrested for a felony or serious misdemeanor within 3 years, 46.9% were reconvicted, and 25.4% resentenced to prison for a new crime.
- The 272,111 offenders discharged in 1994 accounted for nearly 4,877,000 arrest charges over their recorded careers.
- Within 3 years of release, 2.5% of released rapists were rearrested for another rape, and 1.2% of those who had served time for homicide were arrested for a new homicide.
- Sex offenders were less likely than non-sex offenders to be rearrested for any offense –– 43 percent of sex offenders versus 68 percent of non-sex offenders.
- Sex offenders were about four times more likely than non-sex offenders to be arrested for another sex crime after their discharge from prison –– 5.3 percent of sex offenders versus 1.3 percent of non-sex offenders. (This is another sex crime, and misleading. How often will a burglar or murderer commit a sex crime? Of course it's going to be higher than other criminals, duh! But read the rest of the page at the link above.)
The Missouri Department of Mental Health has a program that it believes makes it possible to overcome that trend. It’s a sex offender rehabilitation program.
Missouri has nearly 7,000 people listed on its sex offender registry. Each of them are sentenced to the rehab program but it turns out that not all of them are required to complete it.
“Dateline NBC” has become famous in the last couple of years for stings of men trolling for sex with underage kids over the Internet. In the stings, a reporter confronts the trollers and law offers arrest them.
Long before these stings showed up on TV, that was exactly how convicted sex offender Chris Brown was caught.
“Looking back on it now, I realize I had ulterior motives,” said Brown, a graduate of the sex offender rehabilitation program.
Probable cause statement against Brown, page 1
Probable cause statement against Brown, page 2
Probable cause statement against Brown, page 3
Probable cause statement against Brown, page 4
His motives drove him to a park to meet a 14-year-old girl. Instead, court documents show, he met the Livingston County sheriff.
“Looking back at it, I feel a lot of guilt about it,” he said.
Brown says his guilt isn't over getting caught. It's thanks to a rehabilitation program.
“Some people turn to alcohol and drugs. I turned to the Internet and soliciting -- that type of thing,” said Brown.
The program at Farmington Correctional Facility really is like a rehab program. In a school-like setting, offenders learn how their crime affected their victim, life coping skills, and ways to identify if they're at risk of committing another crime.
“This is treatment that works and we have a very good success rate,” said David Stephens, director of the Department of Mental Health.
The program boasts that 96 percent of its graduates haven't reoffended three years after their releases; and 94 percent haven’t reoffended after 10 years.
- So now, seeing this, which I've said therapy works for the last year now, if you really wanted to help children, you would get offenders the treatment they need. If you do not, then you have another agenda you are not talking about. Therapy works folks!!!
However, not every sex offender in Missouri finishes the program.
- And these are who you need to look out for, IMO.
“Offenders in Missouri are sentenced to the program and it’s their choice to attend the program or not,” said Michael Mitchell, director of Sex Offender Services.
The Missouri Department of Correction says, in 2006, only 77 percent of sex offenders sentenced to the program finished the first phase and, of those, only 61 percent completed the second phase.
“We have a great opportunity to provide them with a chance to reshape their lives so that the people around them when they get out will feel safer,” said Stephens.
Brown says he understands why some people may not finish.
“When I first went in it, I hated everybody I was around but I came to realize all of us had the same issues and, because of those issues, we're pretty much the same,” said Brown.
He thinks the program helped him. He believes he is no longer a threat to society.
“I don't believe I am but I always have to take that into consideration so I make sure I do not become one in the future,” he said.
Brown was able to get out of prison on parole because he graduated from the program. But, if someone does not finish the program, that just means he has to serve the whole term of his sentence.
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The Pitt County Sheriff's Office is seeking money to improve sex offender registration and tracking in the county.
Sheriff officials have applied for an Adam Walsh grant from the U.S. Department of Justice to pay for the hours needed to verify addresses of registered sex offenders living in Pitt County, said Melissa Larson, grants administrator with the Pitt County Sheriff's Office.
- This is called bribery. Either comply or you don't get the grant money, and the last time I checked, is illegal! They get you to pass the laws, then don't fund it. Why not come up with REAL solutions instead of passing laws that aren't and will not work? What about prevention?
The grant is to help jurisdictions comply with requirements of the Adam Walsh Child and Safety Act of 2006. Passed on the 25th anniversary of the kidnapping and murder of 7-year-old Adam Walsh, the legislation is designed to protect the public from violent sex offenders via a more comprehensive, nationalized system for the registration of sex offenders. The act calls for state conformity to various aspects of sex offender registration including verification, access to and sharing of information.
There are 206 registered sex offenders in Pitt County, according to the latest State Bureau of Investigation's registry report. That total is the ninth highest among the state's 100 counties.
The county has one officer responsible for verifying and registering offenders.
If a jurisdiction doesn't comply with federal requirements within three years of its implementation, it gets a 10 percent reduction in other law enforcement assistance grants, the act says.
Larson said Pitt County is in compliance with federal requirements, but the additional funding would allow them to improve their procedures.
"We are actually ahead of the game as far as compliance," Larson said. "We just want to be able to take it one step further. A lot of agencies in the nation don't have the resources or the funds or maybe just don't see it as an issue, but the Pitt County Sheriff's Office, we take that stuff seriously. We want to be sure we are going above and beyond to protect our kids."
Along with providing for overtime hours, the grant also would help the sheriff's department develop educational materials and make the community more aware of the dangers associated with personal Web sites such as MySpace and Facebook.com, Larson said.
"We would like to encourage parents to keep a closer eye on how children are portraying themselves online because that could be a gateway for sex offenders," Larson said.
An upgrade in software for the department's records management system also would be funded by the grant, Larson said.
Sex offender registration must occur before an offender is released from imprisonment or within three days of a nonimprisonment sentence, federal law states. Changes in registry information must be reported in that time period as well.
Offenders are restricted in how close they can live to certain facilities such as child care centers and schools.
Larson said she applied for the grant about two weeks ago after getting approval from county commissioners last month.
If awarded, Pitt County Sheriff's Office will receive $37,070 in federal funds and a $12,357 county match.
This is a very stupid cop. He is a cop and should know better. Also, I don't like TCAP's way of handling things. They bring predators into your neighborhood, when MOST are from out of state. Anything for ratings I guess. I also think it is very sick that people love to watch this and they get off on watching other people suffer. Just take Jerry Springer, COPS, etc. This country is so immoral it isn't funny, it's frightening, IMO.