Friday, October 10, 2008
Restrictions only affect those on probation or parole, click the image at the end.
MILWAUKEE -- Greenfield Police are putting sex offenders on notice as several neighborhoods prepare for Halloween festivities.
On Friday officers began contacting every registered sex offender in the city. They reminded offenders that they must remain indoors during scheduled Halloween events. Offenders also have to stay inside one hour before and after the events.
Sex offenders are also prohibited from displaying any type of decorations at their homes and their porch lights must be turned off.
Reported by: Tim Millard - Email: TMillard@wetmtv.com
WATKINS GLEN - Lawmakers in Schuyler County will again consider a proposed law to restrict where registered sex offenders can and cannot live.
The proposal would prohibit Level 2 and Level 3 offenders from living within 500 feet of places like schools, playgrounds, or daycare centers.
The county legislature took up the proposal in January, but had to scrap it due to concerns on whether it could actually be enforced, according to the sheriff.
On Tuesday, the legislature will meet to schedule a hearing to listen to public comments on the proposal, which is a required step in the legislative process.
ARLINGTON (CBS 11 News) ― Mansfield School District officials say a middle school student was sexually assaulted while at school two weeks ago.
The district did not release information about the crime until today.
The crime happened at James Coble Middle School. Coble is a Mansfield ISD school but is located in the city of Arlington, so Arlington Police are investigating.
In a news release, MISD spokesman Terry Morawski and Arlington Police spokesman Lt. Blake Miller say the assault happened on September 26.
Miller says a 13-year-old girl told police she had been in a hallway at the school that morning when a man grabbed her, pulled her into a girls' locker room and sexually assaulted her.
Miller identified the suspect as 34-year-old Fredrick Ramone Wright. He says Wright is the father of another Coble student and was visiting the campus that day. Wright is in the Arlington jail under $100,000 bond. He is being charged with aggravated sexual assault and aggravated kidnapping.
In the news release, Morawski lists the security measures in place at MISD middle schools. They include a sign-in system that scans visitors' driver's licenses and compares the information to a registered sex offender database.
Police say Wright went to the school to visit his own child. The sign-in system cleared him to enter the school, Miller said, and he was allowed into the building.
Police have not said whether Wright has a criminal past, but a search for his name in the Texas Department of Public Safety's Sex Offender Registry returned no results.
No MISD middle school has security cameras, according to the district.
The district's statement also says although the crime happened two weeks ago, the district waited until now to tell the community about it "due to laws protecting privacy rights and to not impede the progress of the investigation."
Last year, a teacher's aide was accused of sexually assaulting another student at the same school.
View the article here
BY BECKY MALKOVICH, The Southern
BENTON — A former Franklin County jailer who previously pleaded guilty to three counts of custodial sexual misconduct, was sentenced to four years in the Illinois Department of Corrections Friday.
Scott E. McMurray, 26, who was a correctional officer at the county jail, was accused of sexual misconduct with three female inmates housed at the facility.
Franklin County State's Attorney Tom Dinn said the sexual misconduct was mistakenly categorized as a "sex for cigarettes trade."
"That doesn't really come close to describing the reality of this case," Dinn said.
In fact, he said, intimidation and threats were used in an attempt to coerce at least two of the victims to comply with McMurray's demands.
McMurray of Christopher must also register as a sex offender and will be required to pay restitution to his victims.
By Jessica Musicar, Staff Writer
NORTH BEND — A registered sex offender convicted of sodomy, robbery and rape is essentially being driven out of a North Bend neighborhood after nearby residents learned of his presence.
Coos County Community Corrections director Roy Wright directed Frank A. Howard, 51, to move out of the Broadway Court neighborhood by 5 p.m. Thursday. He said he received several calls from a resident, and has chosen to relocate Howard.
- What right do they have to tell someone they cannot live somewhere? If they do not have a law stating this man cannot live there, and he is there legally, then this is nothing but a witch hunt!
“We’re not going to battle with the public,” Wright said.
Residents, including Jason Snelgrove and Tina Hickey, said they were not aware that the sex offender was living in their neighborhood until last Friday, although Howard has been staying there since July.
“This guy has talked to my wife before,” Snelgrove said. “I was afraid for my family.”
Howard was convicted in 1981 of three counts of sodomy, four counts of robbery and one count of rape after sexually assaulting and attempting to sexually assault six different women at gunpoint. According to a community notification on the Coos County Corrections Web site, all the victims of his crimes were strangers. The attacks were committed in Coos County. A Coos County Circuit Court spokeswoman said he also was convicted in 2007 of second-degree theft.
- This is a rare case. But still, if he is there legally, they have no right to dictate where he can and cannot live, period!
Wright said he did not know where Howard would be moved, as housing is often an issue in these cases. Typically, parole orders for sex offenders prevent them from living near schools, playgrounds, or other places where people under 18 years of age regularly congregate, the director explained.
“We’re out looking for a place right now,” Wright said Thursday. “We try to respond to the community. ... It’s not going to work with him living there, so he’s gotta move.”
- What law says he cannot live there? Hell, can I bitch and moan about my neighbor and get him to move as well?
The complaints he received were based on Howard’s presence not his behavior, Wright noted.
“Some people just don’t like sex offenders living near them,” he said. “This is a very infrequent event, this kind of response from a person in the community.”
- Yeah, so! If they don't like it, they can always move. The person has just as much of a right to live there as anybody else does. But the witch hunt continues! The police should be arresting people for harassment!
When community members do share their concerns, corrections administrators respond in different ways, Wright said. He did not detail the variety of circumstances or responses.
Despite the severity of Howard’s crimes, Wright said he does not fit the criteria to be considered a predatory sex offender. His status was determined through a risk assessment instrument prior to his release from the Oregon State Correctional Institution in 2005. Howard returned to Coos County following his release.
According to the Oregon State Police Sex Offender Registration Web site, Oregon law defines a predatory sex offender as a person who exhibits characteristics showing a tendency to victimize or injure others, and who has been convicted of certain sex crimes. The predatory designation allows law enforcement, or a supervising agency, to notify the community about a particular sex offender. Offenders are assessed on an individual basis. Assessments are based, in part, on previous history and the facts surrounding sex offense convictions, the site said.
- So now, instead of listening to experts, which is common, they listen to the mob!
Wright added that predatory sex offenders have to register for life and notification requirements are more rigorous.
In cases of predatory sex offenders, Wright said community notification flyers are sent out to local law enforcement, libraries, school districts, colleges, swimming pools, malls and organizations involving children, such as the Boys & Girls Club of Southwest Oregon, the North Bend Public Library, the Pony Village Mall and the North Bend School District, among others. Notice also may be given to local news agencies.
In non-predatory cases, notifications are sent to all law enforcement agencies in the area, the Department of Human Services and Child Welfare.
Although Wright said Howard is not considered predatory, Howard’s mug shot and name are featured under the heading Predatory Sex Offenders on one page of the county’s community corrections Web site.
- So when are they going to fix their mistake? Labeling a man a predatory sex offender, when he has not been determined to be predator, is misleading, and wrong!
Howard does not appear on the Oregon Predatory Sex Offender Inquiry System, which lists only predatory sex offenders, nor the Dru Sjodin National Sex Offender Public Web site, which is coordinated by the U.S. Department of Justice.
After Howard was released, Coos County Corrections didn’t completely trust the parole board’s assessment, Wright said, and notified his neighbors of his presence at the time.
- So, now they are taking the law into their own hands, and deciding who they "feel" is a predator? That is just wrong, and corrupt!
“Pretty rough looking crime, wouldn’t you say?” Wright said.
But when he moved to another location, the county didn’t repeat its notification.
Snelgrove said he believes he and his neighbors should have been notified nonetheless. While he is pleased Howard is moving, he’s concerned for people in Howard’s next neighborhood.
- Well, too bad! If he has not been deemed a predator, and the law doesn't send out notifications for non-predators, then you have no right to be notified!
“I want people where he goes to next to be notified that he is a predatory sex offender,” Snelgrove said. “The point is, anyone should be notified in this circumstance, and why aren’t they?”
- He is not a predator sex offender, they told you that!
He said he first learned of Howard after a neighbor said the sex offender was staying on another neighbor’s land. A property owner later found Howard on the predatory offenders list on the Coos County site.
- He's on the predatory list, by mistake, the article states that above.
“Basically, I wouldn’t live here, if he was living there,” Snelgrove said. “How could you live with yourself if something ever happened?”
- Same goes for any other crime as well. Like murder, DUI, gangs, drug dealers, thieves, burglars, etc. So what is your point? The world is a dangerous place, so wake up, and come back from fantasy island!
Tina Hickey, who lives about four houses away with her young daughter, said she found one of the notices on her front door.
“It’s pretty creepy,” she said. “I want him out as quick as possible.”
By Lori Fullbright, The News On 6
TULSA -- Sex crimes create a lot of fear and receive a lot of attention. Much has been said about where sex offenders live, but have you ever wondered where they work?
Tulsa has about 400 registered sex offenders right now. The News On 6 obtained a list of where each and every one of them works. Some of the jobs might surprise you because they are inside your very home.
Even after sex offenders serve their time, they are treated differently than any other criminal. In addition to registering their address with police, they can't live in 95% of the city, near schools and daycares. That even applies to people whose victims weren't children.
People have police measure and start campaigns to get certain neighbors to move. They do it because they want to protect their children, but the truth is sex offenders are around us on a daily basis.
The list of jobs for Tulsa's registered sex offenders says approximately 30 are cooking and serving our food at restaurants. Another 25 are driving around making deliveries. They are washing cars, hauling trash, cleaning offices, cutting hair, taking our temperature and more.
Most interesting, though, is more than 70 of them are actually working inside our homes, as carpet cleaners, painters, cabinet builders, electricians, plumbers and handymen.
Police say it's rare to have a registered sex offender commit a crime because of access gained through their job. They say a stable environment is a good way to keep them from re-offending and stability often means having a job.
"The ones out there where we don't know where they're at, not telling us where they're working or going to school, those are the ones we're concerned with," said Tulsa Police Sgt. John Adams.
Police actually fear the laws that limit where sex offenders can live have increased the number of people who go underground and don't register.
"Two years ago, we had 550. Now we have less than 400," said Tulsa Police Sgt. John Adams. "I don't think 150 have left the city."
If you're worried about sex offenders working in your home, you should ask the company the name of the person they're sending, and then check the police department's sex offender registry.
Some of the careers on the list that really stood out included a minister busted for having obscene photos, an attorney convicted of indecent exposure, and two former teachers.
By AARON SANBORN - email@example.com
DOVER — A judge has taken under advisement a registered sex offender's motion to dismiss the city's sex offender ordinance and rule it unconstitutional.
A decision on the matter may not come until November, City Attorney Allan Krans said after the hearing Wednesday afternoon.
The ordinance — Dover City Code, 131-20 — prohibits registered sex offenders from residing within 2,500 feet of a school or day care center. The ordinance was challenged earlier this year by the New Hampshire Civil Liberties Union, which filed a motion to dismiss the ordinance on behalf of registered sex offender Richard Jennings.
During a five-hour hearing at Dover District Court, NHCLU Attorney Barbara Keshen presented the case why ordinances such as the one enacted in Dover don't work. City officials presented why they believe the ordinance has made the Garrison City safer.
The city used six witnesses while Keshen presented just one, Carolyn Lucet, a licensed social worker with experience treating sex offenders. She testified on how these ordinances can sometimes make the situation worse.
"Our expert indicated that she has read all the studies that have come down the pike on these issues and not one study supports these restrictions or indicate they prevent crime," Keshen said. "In fact, there's a good deal of evidence that these ordinances make the community unsafe for children because it destabilizes sex offenders."
That happens because the ordinances can force the offenders underground and sometimes separate them from their loved ones — like what happened with Jennings, Keshen said.
The city presented evidence to show the opposite can happen, as detectives from the Dover Police Department presented statistics that showed a reduction in registered sex offenders and sex assaults in the city, Krans said.
"We presented a case that demonstrated to the court that the City Council enacted the ordinance within its authority and in a rational and reasonable way with a narrow but effective approach to protecting children in Dover," he said.
Former Police Chief William Fenniman and former City Councilor Matt Mayberry also testified on the city's behalf about the origins of the ordinance and why it's effective.
Mayberry proposed the ordinance in 2005 after seeing first-hand in his job as a real estate agent how many sex offenders lived near schools. Fenniman helped him develop the ordinance.
- So how many sex offenders, living near schools, parks or play grounds, have committed their sex crime at these places? A majority of them, 90% or more, commit the sex crime in their own home, or close family. So it's not the "stranger" we should be worried about, but your own family! Study after study proves this!
The city also presented two witnesses from the Planning Office to present exhibits of the ordinance map, Krans said.
"We think we got a full and fair hearing, and we feel confident a judge will thoroughly review the case and come up with a decision that's favorable to us," he said.
Keshen, confident she presented a good case, said she believes the ordinance will be ruled unconstitutional.
"I continue to feel this ordinance is unlawful for a variety of reasons and that it doesn't actually achieve what the council hoped to achieve," she said.
When the ordinance was enacted there were 35 sex offenders in the city. Now there are 17.
"What happened to those 18 people?" Keshen asked. "Did they go underground or did they go to neighboring towns? If they (sex offenders) are such a burden like the city claims, why should Rochester, Somersworth and Portsmouth absorb more than their share?"
Both sides have until Oct. 20 to file any new legal briefs and, after that, Judge Mark Weaver said it might take 30 days to render a decision, according to Krans.
Still, it's likely the case will end up in the Supreme Court, as both parties have said they would appeal the decision if they lost.
- Good, it needs to be in the Supreme Court in the first place!
Jennings, 41, was charged with violating the ordinance in November 2007 after being charged with felony-level failure to register as a sexual offender for not notifying police that he moved from Portsmouth to 175 Locust St. in Dover to live with his fiancee.
Police also charged him with the ordinance violation since 175 Locust St. is located about 1,200 feet from My School Kindergarten at 118 Locust St.
Jennings was convicted in May 2000 on a charge of felonious sexual assault on a minor. Since the victim was 15 at the time of the offense, Jennings is required to register as a sex offender for life.
He was arrested again in April for living at the Locust Street address and still not registering with city police. Jennings had claimed he was living with his parents in Epping, but several neighbors tipped police off about Jennings still living at the address, which led to police performing surveillance in the area.
He recently finished serving a six-month jail sentence for the April charge.
View the article here
A 15-year-old Ohio girl faces child pornography charges, including illegal use of a minor in nudity-oriented material, a second-degree felony; and possession of criminal tools, a fifth-degree felony. She has pled guilty on both counts and may be classified as a sexual offender, although the judge has some leeway because she is a juvenile.
What depraved act brought the weight of the law down on her head? She took nude photos of her self with her camera phone and passed them along to friends.
That's right. Photos of herself. According to the news report:
The section of the law the girl, who is a foster child, was charged with allows parents or guardians to take photos of their unclothed children for a list of acceptable purposes but does not provide an exemption for the child themselves.
The law itself can be found here.
State Rep. Jay Hottinger, the hot-to-trot legislator who pushed through the law that paints a girl as a felon for photographing herself concedes that the penalty may be a bit excessive, but insists that taking pictures of yourself is, indeed, a terrible act. "Clearly it was an unacceptable act, and there needs to be consequences from that, but we need to make sure the punishment is a reasonable punishment."
Color me appalled. I assume Hottinger know that the girl's actions will be perfectly legal just three years from now, when she's 18.
While authorities elsewhere have been somewhat more restrained than those in Ohio, the opportunities for passing out child pornographyy convictions for consensual acts between minors and camera phones are abundant. In April, the Columbus Dispatch reported, "Experts and high-school students both say that teens -- particularly girls -- are increasingly using naked pictures, raunchy messages and promises of no-strings-attached sex to get attention or nab a boy." And in June, seven high school freshman at New Jersey's Pascack Valley High School were suspended for sharing provocative photos. In Boulder, Colorado, elementary school kids have been caught doing the same thing.
The Boulder incident was resolved between the parents, which seems like a vastly preferable means of dealing with the problem than felony convictions and prison time.
Nobody should be happy about kids exposing themselves for the world to see. There can be emotional and personal consequences to such activity, and the younger the children, the more serious the risks. That is, efforts to head off sharing of raunchy photos and videos among kids should be aimed at protecting those kids from their own actions, not dragging them on a tour through Hell for harming anybody else.
But as we try to protect kids from their own poor judgment, it looks like we're going to have to protect them from overzealous legislators and prosecutors too.
(ABC 6 NEWS) -- Officials say people living in southeast Minnesota are growing more concerned about sex offenders in their neighborhoods, so local law enforcement gave a presentation to address the issue.
The meeting took place at the Eagles Club in Rochester.
Officials say there are a number of reasons why residents want more information. That includes a new law that went into effect allowing medical facilities to find out if a sex offender is receiving treatment at its facility.
There are also plans for an offender housing unit in Rochester.
"People are asking more questions and we're trying to do a lot more community education than ever," says Probation Officer Alex Bunger.
- I hope this "community education" includes the true facts, and not fear-mongering!
Some of the things discussed include coping with a sex offender in the workplace and how to get more information.
Another cop, another slap on the wrist. He had sex with this 14 year old, from what is said in this article, and he gets to serve his prison time ON THE WEEKENDS?
By JULIE SHAW - firstname.lastname@example.org
A judge yesterday sentenced a former Philadelphia police officer - convicted of unlawful contact and of corrupting the morals of a 14-year-old girl - to eight to 23 months in county jail.
Common Pleas Judge Genece Brinkley said that ex-Officer Thomas Gitto, 41, could serve his prison sentence on weekends. He was ordered to turn himself in today.
Gitto, who worked in the Narcotics Field Unit, was accused of having sex with the girl in 2004. The teen is a younger sister of Gitto's then-live-in girlfriend, who is now his fiancee.
After the sentencing, asked if he had sex with the teen, Gitto proclaimed: "Absolutely not."
A jury in June acquitted Gitto of charges of statutory sexual assault and aggravated indecent assault. As such, it appeared to agree that Gitto did not have sexual contact with the girl, or that it found that prosecutors did not prove he did so beyond a reasonable doubt.
- So what about all the other non-police who they did not prove "beyond a reasonable doubt" they had sex with someone? Once again, another cop, and the people protecting the "good ole' boy!" Yes, he could be innocent, but read my question again? This is never an issue when it's a normal citizen in the same situation!
Jurors, however, convicted Gitto of a felony charge of unlawful contact with a minor - in that he communicated with her for an illicit purpose - and a misdemeanor charge of corrupting her morals.
- Yeah, and so does a lot of other people who did the same and busted by "To Catch a Predator!" And they do not get the same treatment!
The commonwealth contended that in 2004, when the girl was 14, she and Gitto had consensual sex three times and that there was sexual touching about four other times, Assistant District Attorney Bill Davis said after the hearing.
- So if they all "contended" this, why is he not being charged with molesting a child? Plus, as many have mentioned before, a 14 year old cannot give consent, plus she is underage, and yet he gets slapped on the wrist!
After yesterday's sentencing, defense attorney Brian McLaughlin contended that the teen made up the sexual allegations to spite her older sister. He said the older sister had found the teen drinking alcohol and had ratted her out to their parents, and because of that, the younger sister retaliated with the allegations.
- So if this is true, this person needs to be put in jail or prison for falsely accusing someone of something they did not do, period!
Davis disputed this contention.
McLaughlin also noted that the girl first claimed Gitto raped her, then said the relationship was consensual. He suggested that the jury did not find her credible.
In court yesterday, the girl, now 19, read an impact statement. Her hand shaking, she said she "started drinking alcohol as an escape" and tries "to forget" what happened. "I really blame myself for what happened. I have nightmares," she said.
- So what truly happened? If he raped or had sex with you, that is a crime, and if he did not, you should be in jail or prison for falsely accusing someone of something they did not do!
Gitto, dressed in a black suit, took issue with some of the commonwealth's evidence in the case. "I could go on," he said. "I'm just asking for leniency. . . . I'm not sorry, your Honor. I did nothing wrong."
The judge said she believed there were some "very serious issues" here. She noted, for instance, a pre-sentence investigator's report that recommended Gitto get sex-offender treatment.
- If he did not do anything, then you cannot make him get this treatment!
Davis, in asking for a county jail sentence, noted that Gitto, who was a police officer at the time of the alleged offenses, was someone people trusted.
McLaughlin asked for a probationary sentence.
The judge said she believed "incarceration is appropriate," in part, to send a message. She ordered the jail term to be followed by three years' probation and for Gitto to get sex-offender treatment. Gitto, who the defense said now owns an auto-body shop, also was ordered to continue working.
- For what? If the man did not do anything, what message do you expect to send? If he is guilty, then yeah, he should be in prison, if not, the girl should be in jail or prison! And how can you ORDER someone to work? If they do not want to work, that is their right!
Gitto was fired by the Police Department in April 2007, after 14 years on the force.
- Fired, for what appears to be a false allegation! Insane!
View the article here
When they do these online studies, how come they lead you to assume children are always being contacted by adults only? Why do they not break it down into other peers and adults? From many other studies I have seen, this is blown way out of proportion, and many kids are being contacted by other kids, not adults. Just click the OnlineSexualAbuse label above to see all related studies.
If you are a parent, then you likely have one of two things, a child already on the Internet, or one who soon will be on the Internet. It’s a scary thought if all you know about kids and the Internet is what you learned by watching Dateline’s “To Catch a Predator” series. In this article, continuing the National Cyber Security Awareness Month coverage, The Tech Herald will look at some of the stats surrounding Kids on the Internet and one tool that is hands down one of the best for houses with kids online.
Statistical information: do the numbers lie to you?
To kick some things off, here are some statistics you might not know. These facts come from a PowerPoint presentation by PEW Internet in 2008.
Thirty-three percent of teens online have been contacted by a stranger. Of those contacted by a stranger, 23 percent of those teens were made to feel uncomfortable by the experience. Twenty-five percent of youth who have regular Internet access have had one or more unwanted exposures to sexual pictures within the past year. Of that 25 percent, 27 percent said the exposure was during IM sessions or e-mail and seventy-three percent said it happened while surfing.
Do those facts bother you as a parent? Did they scare you? Did they disturb you in some way? Before you get out a hammer and remove the Internet from your home think of this, according to Symantec, 19 percent of all Spam sent in October related to porn or medical treatments.
Male enhancement drugs, which often use graphic images, are the most common. Outright porn advertisements are severely graphic, and would expose kids online to images and acts often not taught in Sex-Ed at school. Now, look back at the earlier stats.
Remember those 25 percent of youth who have regular Internet access, and how 27 percent of them have seen sexually explicit pictures in IM or email? Think rationally. What are the odds that most of those contacts came from IM Spam or e-mail Spam? The odds are high, that most of the contact comes from Spam.
What about the 73 percent who saw the explicit images while surfing? Again, think logically about this, where were they surfing? What sites were they on and what were they doing online at the time they were exposed? The answers to those questions will not be found in any statistical report.
If you want an example, use something simple like Google Images search. When you search for an image, you will notice a link under the search bar that says Moderate SafeSearch is on. This means search terms are filtered. Search for "Georgia peaches" with no quotes, and notice the innocent image results.
Now, "Georgia peaches" is a rather random term, and not sexual in nature for the most part. Next, click the Moderate SafeSearch is on link and disable it. Search for the same thing again. This time you get some different results.
The point is to show you that by even using something as innocent as “Georgia peaches” as a search term, and simply removing search filtering, you can be exposed to sexual images. Anyone can access the search options in Google Images, even a teen wanting to expand search results. How relevant are those stats from earlier now?
Do you remember the 33 percent of teens online who earned attention from a stranger? How do we know if the 23 percent of teens who said they were uncomfortable by the experience, didnt simply tell the person who made contact to piss off, and placed them on ignore in their IM client?
We don’t know the questions teens are asked in most cases, all we see are the stats and answers given. In this case, the teen could have been uncomfortable simply because that was the only option given to them when asked about random contacts from strangers.
Another report from PEW Internet says that, “Some 93% of youth are online and 94% of their parents are online.” So the teens online are often in the same house as an Internet using parent. What this means is that as a parent, you shouldn’t take most of the stats you see with complete gospel.
Question the stats, and use your own online experience as a judge as well. Remember, they are your children, so you know them better than anyone. Talk to them; get interested what they are doing online. Also, as a parent you have to regulate the rules, but more on that in part two.
One tool to rule them all
There are dozens and dozens of parental control applications online for parents to use to protect their children. One tool is often left out of parental control reviews. Everyone knows of NetNanny, yet how many parents can recall K9, when talking about parental software?
K9 Web Protection is developed by Blue Coat. The program is free, and offers excellent control for your children. The content filtering aspect offers a continuously updated category list of over fifty categories. The content filter is more than “Keyword” based; it uses AI to determine a Web page’s content on the fly.
You can allow or deny access to the Internet based on time of day, the day of the week, or both. There are options for you to allow sites, and block select ones, without blocking an entire category.
Now, like other parental control applications, K9 can be defeated. It can be hard, but it can be defeated.
No, there will be no tricks listed here to explain this. Suffice to say, protecting your children online requires trust. K9 should be used as a tool to help protect children from wandering off the beaten path into a Malware laced Internet. It should not be used as a method of “big brother” monitoring.
However, some parents do restrict access to the point of “big brother,” and for that there is a report in K9’s admin panel that shows every URL visited.
If you are using K9 in a restrictive fashion, then you need to take other steps to lock down the computer that the child has access to. These methods can differ from one operating system to another, but the basics listed below are all the same. You can also find help with these lockdowns online and in the user manual for your operating system.
Restrict the account your child has access to. When you create their account in Windows, ensure that it has only the basic permissions, and is what is called a “limited account”
Use passwords, which the child cannot guess, on your accounts as well as the Administrator account. (Yes there is a user known as Administrator on most systems, and often the password is P4ssw0rd, password, or the field is left blank.)
Deny access to system services, limited accounts will cover most of them but double check them.
Prevent boot from USB.
Another method comes from a Microsoft created tool, which you can get here.
Part two of this article will list some common tips and advice for parents who want to protect their kids online.
Ex-Turlock cop is sentenced for sex with 17-year-old girl
By Merrill Balassone - email@example.com
A judge sentenced ex-Turlock police officer Jorge Fernando Cruz to 16 months in prison Thursday for sex crimes with a 17-year-old girl who shadowed him to learn about becoming a police officer.
Cruz pleaded no contest in August to three felony counts: sodomy with a minor, oral copulation with a minor and sexual intercourse with a minor.
"This defendant was a sworn peace officer -- someone sworn to protect and to serve, not to use this position to seduce and manipulate," Deputy District Attorney Annette Rees said. "He violated that trust in the worst way."
Cruz could serve as few as eight months and will not have to register as a sex offender, because the charges did not include forcible sex and the girl was older than 14.
Cruz called to meet with the Pitman High School student, a member of the Police Explorer program, in June 2007. The girl drove him to a Modesto motel where the sex acts took place, according to court documents.
Defense attorney Paul Goyette said Stanislaus County Superior Court Judge Charles Stone's sentence was too harsh.
"It's an extraordinarily heavy sentence for a single consensual act between two people," Goyette said. "We wouldn't even be having this conversation if she was a few months older."
- Funny how when a cop is involved, these questions come up, but when it's a young kid, they do not come up!
Goyette asked the sheriff's department and the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation to seclude Cruz from other inmates, because Cruz helped lock up gang members as a police officer and could face retaliation.
- Why seclude him? Put him in with general population like you do all other people in similar situations!
"He'll be immediately recognized," Goyette said. "He won't be a popular guy there."
- Yeah, protect the "good ole' boy," while any other citizen in the same situation gets thrown in with general population.
Wearing a tan button-down shirt and brown slacks, Cruz immediately was handcuffed and led away after the judge sentenced him.
Outside the courtroom, friends and family of the victim and defendant declined to comment.
In a hearing last month, Rees read a statement from the girl describing her experience with Cruz.
"He took something from me that I will never get back. He took my security, my innocence," it read.
She said she doesn't feel safe anywhere and sleeps with a gun.
"Sometimes I think it would be easier to die than to deal with what he did to me," read the statement.
Cruz wrote three sentences in his statement to the probation department.
"I regret what occurred because it destroyed my character, credibility and my family," he wrote.
Rape can't be proved
The girl claimed Cruz made threats against her, including that he would "kill or have somebody kill her" if she reported him, according to court documents. The victim said Cruz told her he has family who are in gangs and they have "shot and killed people."
But Rees said there was not enough evidence to prove rape.
The allegations against Cruz didn't come to light until investigators began questioning Carl Kubicek, a former Pitman High math teacher who pleaded no contest to two felony counts of unlawful sexual intercourse with the same 17-year-old girl. Kubicek told police in February the girl had confided to him about Cruz several months earlier.
An investigator, posing as Kubicek, spoke to Cruz by cell phone in February. During that call, Cruz admitted being at a motel with the victim and repeatedly asked him not to tell anybody, stating it would "ruin his career."
Kubicek is scheduled to be sentenced next week.
Bee staff writer Merrill Balassone can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 578-2337.
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The former police chief of West Homestead was sentenced Thursday in federal court in Pittsburgh to 12 years in prison for luring a minor into engaging in sexual activity.
David Ausburn, 39, was charged with using a telephone and computer between January and February 2003 to induce a minor to have sex.
Ausburn was a police detective at the time of the incident. He was police chief at the time of his arrest in February 2005.
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LEE COUNTY - A man who once led a life of law enforcement now faces a sex charge against a child.
Clarence Shepard, 76, is accused of molesting a child under the age of 12.
Shepard once served two terms as sheriff of Vanderburgh County, Indiana from 1983 to 1991.
Investigators say Shepard touched the girl inappropriately twice while showing her a collection of dolls.
Detectives say Shepard also asked the child to touch him in an inappropriate place.
The sheriff's office booked Shepard into the Lee County Jail early Thursday morning and he has not yet posted bond.
Shepard is also a former president of the Indiana Sheriff's Association and served with the Evansville Police Department for more than 20 years.
Shepard retired to Southwest Florida in the early 1990s.
Another Related Article
A murder investigation was under way last night as a body discovered in remote mid-Norfolk woodland turned out to be that of a convicted paedophile.
Police last night identified the man found dead at Great Witchingham on Monday as Gordon Boon, 73, of Norwich.
He had blood around his mouth and nose and one sock and a shoe missing and is now understood to have been strangled and dumped at Rabbit Lane.
In December 2001, Mr Boon, then 66, was jailed for six years and put on the sex offenders' register for life after he carried out indecent assaults and serious sexual offences involving an eight-year-old and two 13-year-old girls.
Norwich Crown Court heard he took pornographic pictures of one of his victims after plying her with alcohol and playing a game of strip poker.
The police major investigation team was last night following up a number of lines of inquiry and is trying to piece together Mr Boon's last movements.
He was last seen alive in the area of the Maids Heads Hotel in Norwich last Friday and it is understood his son alerted police on Saturday after he failed to meet him for a drink.
His body was discovered on Monday lunchtime at a spot used by dog walkers and the occasional fly-tipper.
Det Chief Insp Steve Strong said: "We would appeal for anyone who may have seen anything suspicious in the Rabbit Lane and Porters Lane areas of Great Witchingham to come forward with information that might prove useful to our investigation.
"We are also very keen to trace the final movements of Mr Boon and would like to hear from anyone that may have seen him since October 2."
Anyone with information is asked to contact the Major Investigation Team on 0845 4564567.
By Paul Eakins, Staff Writer
COURTS: Attorneys say L.B. law restricting where their clients may live or loiter violates Constitution.
LONG BEACH - Attorneys representing 35 registered sex offenders filed a civil rights lawsuit this week aimed at a strict sex offender ordinance that the City Council passed in March.
The lawsuit, which was filed Tuesday in Los Angeles County Superior Court in Long Beach, says the city's sex offender ordinance violates Constitutional rights and is too vague. The measure builds on existing state law to restrict where sex offenders may live or loiter, but city officials suspended enforcement of the ordinance in April.
"Basically it's not being enforced," City Attorney Robert Shannon said. "Why they chose to serve the lawsuit at this time is unclear to me."
Shannon said his office is reviewing the lawsuit and that he will consult with the council in closed session Oct. 21.
Shannon suspended enforcement of the ordinance so the city could reconsider aspects of the ordinance, he said at the time, but he has yet to return the legislation to the council.
Among the violations alleged by the lawsuit is that the ordinance violates the constitutional ex post facto clause. The clause prevents someone convicted of a crime from facing new or greater punishments than what was allowed at the time of the crime.
"It's adding punishments, not only telling them where they can and cannot be, but telling them where they can and cannot live," said Sarah Stockwell, a Fountain Valley attorney who is one of three lawyers representing the sex offenders.
Stockwell said her clients, whose names aren't used in the lawsuit, are seeking to have the ordinance declared unconstitutional and may seek damages if they are forced to move.
While a state law called Jessica's Law restricts where registered sex offenders who were convicted since November 2006 may live, the law isn't retroactive. Long Beach's ordinance affects all registered sex offenders in the city, regardless of when they committed their crimes.
The lawsuit also says the ordinance violates due process and the takings clause of the state and U.S. constitutions by forcing people from their homes.
"It restricts their freedom," Stockwell said. "We're talking about people who have been released from custody for anywhere from a couple years to 50 years."
Under Long Beach's ordinance, no more than one sex offender can live in a single structure (e.g. apartment or duplex building, or single-family dwelling) unless the sex offenders are related by blood, marriage or adoption.
Furthermore, no property owner or manager may knowingly rent any unit within a multi-family building to more than one sex offender, and no more than one sex offender can stay in a single room at a hotel, motel or inn.
The ordinance creates "residential exclusion zones" - a 2,000-foot radius around child-care centers, parks and schools - where sex offenders aren't allowed to live. In this densely populated city, that provision made most of Long Beach off-limits to sex offenders.
The ordinance also establishes "child safety zones" within 300 feet of areas where children congregate and where sex offenders may not loiter. This provision is one aspect of the ordinance that the lawsuit claims is too vague and ambiguous.
Council members passed the ordinance after Alamitos Beach residents became outraged over the discovery of an apartment building housing more than a dozen sex offenders in their neighborhood.
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ORANGE COUNTY - Detectives think they have a solid case against Casey Anthony and Eyewitness News found out Thursday that Casey's own father will testify against her in front of Orange County's grand jury next week.
Sources told Eyewitness News that prosecutors now have all the forensic evidence they need to ask the grand jury to indict Casey for the murder of her daughter Caylee.
Two members of the Anthony family now have key roles in the case against Casey, her father for what he's going to do and her brother Lee for what he didn't want to do.
Sources told Eyewitness News the Orange County grand jury will hear about high levels of chloroform in the trunk of Casey Anthony's car. The panel will hear how lab tests on the hair and the stain in the trunk will show that Caylee's body was in that trunk and that investigators also believe the little girl's body was at some point in the Anthony's backyard near her playhouse.
The focus on when Caylee was murdered is on the afternoon of June 16, sometime between mid-day, when Caylee's grandfather last saw her alive with Casey, and the evening, when Casey went to her boyfriend's apartment without Caylee.
Eyewitness News has learned George Anthony will testify against his daughter next week before the grand jury about, among other things what he's already told investigators, how in late June Casey prevented him from going near her trunk, which he later found exuded the smell of death.
"Her and I got into a little verbal, she don't want me to go in the trunk," Anthony told investigators during questioning.
George and Cindy Anthony voluntarily gave up DNA samples this week so investigators could scientifically exclude either of them as the source of the hair and stain in Casey's trunk, but investigators had to get a search warrant to get Casey's brother Lee to submit to a DNA test. He also has refused to take a lie detector test for the FBI.
The fact that a grand jury is being called to hear the case at all does not bode well for Casey. In Florida, a grand jury only has to be presented with a case for "capital" crimes, a charge of either first-degree murder or felony murder. It won't be as difficult to convince a grand jury to indict Casey as it would be to convince a regular jury to convict her.
Trial jurors have to convict defendants beyond a reasonable doubt. Grand jurors only have to have probable cause, meaning a reasonable person would conclude from the evidence that Casey committed the crime.
The protesters confronting Casey are starting to get more organized. They used to be just a group of rowdy people in front of the Anthony house, but now they have bumper stickers and logos.
The Orange County Sheriff's Office will file charges against two protesters for misdemeanor battery. The sheriff's office said the protesters lost control and committed an act of violence on George and Cindy Anthony.
Kathy Harris confronted George Anthony while he was asking supporters for donations and getting the word out about his granddaughter Caylee. Harris is from a new, organized group of protesters called Justice For Caylee. The group has logos and a new sign.
Harris followed Anthony to the location he was raising funds, because she wanted to know why he isn't looking for the child and instead asking others to do it for him. George Anthony called deputies for help when the exchange got ugly.
"They want the right to show their side and what they believe. That's what we're asking too," Harris said.
She believes the child is dead and it's time to look for Caylee and prosecute her mother, the person they think is responsible.
"Someone just disposed of this body like it was trash and there is no justice for this baby," she said.
Meanwhile, Orange County investigators got the last piece of evidence they need to move forward on charges against two protestors. Eyewitness News provided them video Thursday that shows one protester pull George by the shirt and another push Cindy Anthony. The two protesters face misdemeanor battery charges.
"This is a reminder, don't commit a battery, have control of yourself," Detective Freddie Sams said.
The charges will most likely be filed Friday.