Monday, February 23, 2009

NY - New sex offender law for East Rochester

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Why do reporters feel like they have to inject their own personal feelings into a story? I thought reporter ethic was to be unbiased and report on the issues only?

02/23/2009

By: Lynette Adams WHEC-TV

Is there any room for sex offenders in East Rochester? (Leave your personal feelings out of the report, report the issues!) A new law in the small village makes it illegal for sex offenders to live anywhere near places that children visit like schools and parks and most homeowners are happy about the new law.
- And where is the studies that shows this even has anything to do with preventing crime?  Where someone lives, has NOTHING to do with recidivism, period.

Mitch Evans is a third generation East Rochester resident and father of four. He worries about the safety of his two high school age children and applauds a new East Rochester law that outlines where sex offenders can live.

Evans said, “It's an unsafe thing to have them that close especially with walkers in this village. It's not like they're getting on a school bus right outside of school and being carted home and some of them have quite a distance to walk and it's a lot of opportunity for sex offenders.”
- Sure, if some offender wants to harm a child, just because they have to be forced into exile doesn't mean they cannot commit another crime, either.  If they really wanted to, nothing about these laws would prevent it.  It's just Big Brother's way of inching it's way into your life, and eventually to control and enslave you.  The government cannot protect themselves, so why do you think they can protect you?  Only you can do that, and even that is not 100%.

The new law prohibits convicted sex offenders from moving within 2,000 feet of schools, playgrounds and parks, recreation and community centers and day care facilities.
- And how many sex crimes can you tell me of, which has occurred within 2000 feet of any of these places?

Village Administrator Martin D’Ambrose said, “We're not restricting access. We could have blankly said look, you can't come and live in our village - that would be wrong, and we didn't do that. There are places you can live, carry on your life and your daily activities and it won't affect you in the least so I think what we did was come up with a good compromise.”
- Good compromise?  What a joke!

Police Chief John Tando says right now there are four registered sex offenders living in the village and violating the new law, they have one year to move. Enforcement will fall on the shoulders of Tando and his department. “Right now I think it's a great law. I don't think these individuals are going to want to move here if the law is in effect, so I don't think it's going to be that much of a burden on my guys.”

Pat Leper supports the law, but says the answer isn't simple. He says everyone has rights. “I know they have rights but so do we with our kids.”

Sex offenders who violate the law could face a $500 fine and 15 days in jail and a $,1000 fine and up to six months in jail for subsequent offenses.


TX - Stiffer sex offender laws could bar online access

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I am not sure, but this must be for those on probation or parole, if not, then there will be many more law suits coming down the pipe.  Those off probation/parole are free, or should be, to do whatever they want.  This really should apply to only those who used the Internet to commit their crime, not all.  And listen to the fear-mongering in the video!

02/23/2009

By Eric Gemmell

WACO - Registered sex offenders across the state are already required to submit their names, age, address, race, even where they work, but a new law could force sex offenders to a new set of online guidelines.

State lawmakers hope a new law would require all registered sex offenders across the state to now submit all email addresses, online profile names, even cell phone numbers to state officials.

Denise Deuvell, an adult probation supervisor for McLennan County said Monday, the county already requires stiffer regulations than what the state requires including barring most sex offenders access to the Internet.

"Our goal is no more victims," said Deuvell.

In other parts of the state regulations aren't as tough as those imposed in McLennan County.

Sex offenders can freely go online, chat even post profiles.

Just last week, MySpace and Facebook, two popular networking sites deleted nearly one hundred thousand profiles that were registered by sex offenders.

Deuvell added, "It's a pretty scary felling not only as a probation officer but as a parent."

If the law passes would be required to surrender all online information to the state but there are some fears sex offenders could be too tech savvy to be caught.

David Davis of the Advocacy Center in Waco said, "That would be my concern. The capacity to create alias...to manipulate a computer screen."

The state estimates that nearly one in five children are approached online by sexual predators.

If the law passes, sex offenders who do not comply could face possible felony charges.

Just listen to the fear mongering here!


VA - Appeals court asked for sex-offender law rehearing

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02/23/2009

By ZINIE CHEN SAMPSON - AP

Government asks appeals court for rehearing on law allowing sex offenders held indefinitely

RICHMOND - The Department of Justice on Monday asked a full appeals court to rule that the federal government has the power to hold sex offenders in custody indefinitely beyond the end of their prison terms.
- This is called ex post facto punishment, not to include due process, and other issues, and is a direct violation of the constitution.  Hopefully this will get up to SCOTUS and repealed because of this.

The filing seeks the reversal of a three-judge panel's ruling last month that Congress overstepped its authority when it allowed civil commitment of "sexually dangerous" federal inmates. The panel of the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said that the law intrudes on police powers that the Constitution reserves for states, many of which have their own similar statutes.

In asking the full 4th Circuit to rehear the case, the government argues that it assumes responsibility for inmates in federal custody and should be allowed to "create civil commitment procedures for such persons to protect the public safety."
- Just like the did with the Guantanamo Bay people as well, no due process and held without reason!

Five inmates at the federal prison hospital in Butner, N.C., challenged the law after they were held beyond the end of their sentences. The federal public defender's office in Raleigh, which represented the inmates, declined to comment Monday.

In upholding a ruling by U.S. District Judge W. Earl Britt of Raleigh, the 4th Circuit panel had become the first federal appeals court to rule on an issue that's divided courts nationwide. The Richmond court's decision is only binding only in the states in the 4th Circuit: Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, West Virginia and Maryland.
- This is why it needs to go to the SCOTUS!

Civil commitment was authorized by the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act, which took effect in July 2006. The act, named after the son of "America's Most Wanted" television host John Walsh, also established a national sex-offender registry along with other provisions.


PA - E-STOP to protect kids from online predators

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02/23/2009

By Matthew Fleishman, BucksLocalNews.com editor

During his campaign, Rep. Steve Santarsiero (Contact) (D-31) vowed to be tough on Internet predators, and on Monday, Feb. 23, he released his plan to keep children safe online.

Joined by Lower Makefield Township Police Chief Ken Coluzzi, Officer Mike Pell, and Newtown Township Police Lieutenant Glenn Forsyth, Santarsiero spoke about his bill - Pennsylvania Electronic Security and Targeting of Online Predators Act (PA e-STOP) - which will limit Internet use for sex offenders.
- You see, the title says "Online Predators," yet the last statement says it will go after "sex offenders!"  Not all sex offenders who are on the Internet or elsewhere, are predators.  It's lies and disinformation like this, which help them get bills passed, elected, and votes.  It's all about lies and deceit, IMO!

"As the Internet grows and online communities become more popular, sexual predators are free to use this virtually unregulated technology to prey on children," said Santarsiero. "While parents should monitor their children's Internet use, and the public should be cautious of strangers online, many dangers exist, and there are few online limitations to block sex offenders."
- Sex Offenders are not all predators, so stop spreading lies!

Santarsiero said that one in five children between the ages of 10 and 17 have received unwanted sexual solicitations online, according to a report by the U.S. Department of Justice.
- This so called "1 in 5," is a lie.  It's one of those magical numbers which sounds good, but does not have facts to back it up.  More disinformation from politicians with an agenda!  And again, they do not tell you, the sexual solicitations are from other peers, not sex offenders or adults, which they want you to believeSee this study that was done from many attorney generals, and many other organizations which prove this is blown out of proportion, but used by politicians to grandstand.

"Due to the fact that everyday, more youth have access to the Internet, we need to do something to make them less vulnerable to sexual exploitation through online relationships," said Santarsiero.
- So to do this, they just assume all sex offenders are predators, and kick them all off, which is pure discrimination.  Why don't they make a social networking site for kids?  Like this company has done?  Again, so they can grandstand, and use fear to get laws passed, the typical politics!

The bill would limit Internet use for sex offenders who used the Internet to commit their crime, while also requiring that all registered sex offenders submit their online identities, e-mail addresses, and social networking pages to the state police.
- I'll believe it when I see it.  I am willing to bet, that this will affect ALL sex offenders, and not those who committed a crime using the Internet.  Watch and see.

As part of the bill, Santarsiero proposes that the state police share this information with social networks, including Facebook and MySpace, so that they could monitor or delete the accounts of registered sex offenders. The bill also offers awarding "PA e-STOP certification" to sites that completely delete these accounts.
- You see, they use double-speak.  They mention predators in the title, so people in politics, who don't read the bills, except for the title, see that and pass it, yet the bill will affect all sex offenders, based on the above statement.

"This proposal is a logical next step in protecting our children from sexual assault," said Santarsiero. "It would give parents and guardians an added measure of security because it would allow sites to advertise their PA e-STOP certification...If we monitor a sex offender's physical address, we also should monitor their online address and presence."

Chief Coluzzi called Santarsiero's proposal, which will be formally introduced in March when the next House session convenes, a "great piece of legislation."
- No, it's BS based on fear and emotion, instead of facts!

"We're going to keep [registered sex offenders] away from our kids on the street, why not keep them away from kids in our homes," said Coluzzi. "You can see them walking near a school, but you can't see them behind closed doors."
- Well, since studies show that 90% of all sexual crimes occur by UNKNOWN sex offenders, those who have not been caught and convicted yet, and from the victims own family and close friends, then what are you going to do about that?  The only way to prevent any sexual crime from occurring to children, is to remove the children from their homes, and isolate them somewhere.

Lieutenant Forsyth agreed with Coluzzi, saying that the PA e-STOP bill was a necessary step to protect children.
- If they were wanting to really protect children, then they'd be doing a lot more than this.  This is just their excuse, but it's actually so they can grandstand and "look good" to the sheeple, and to look like they are actually doing something, and to distract people from the failing economy and corruption in government, IMO.

"I think it's a good bill," said Forsyth. "Any step we can take to protect children is definitely something we need to do."
- Then remove kids from their homes, since studies show that 90% or more of all sexual crimes occur in the victims own home, family and close friends.

The penalties for violations are something that can be debated in Harrisburg, but Santarsiero said that he would like to see the penalties be equal to that of a Meghan's Law violation, which could result in a prison sentence for a violation.

As of his press conference on Feb. 23, at least 25 state representatives, from both sides of the aisle, have signed on to the PA e-STOP bill.
- Of course, instead of upholding their "oath of office," they want a piece of the action, so they also look good to the sheeple of the country.


NJ - Lawmakers considering Internet safety bills

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Related Article

Is it just me, or does it seem like most of the bills these days, that affect sex offenders, are coming from women?

02/23/2009

By ANGELA DELLI SANTI - Associated Press Writer

TRENTON - New Jersey lawmakers this week plan to consider a series of measures aimed at protecting children and teenagers from Web-trolling predators.

A package of 10 bills introduced in the Assembly Monday would stiffen the penalties for harassing or communicating with minors in sexually explicit ways online and allow wiretapping to investigate some suspected crimes against children.

They're part of an aggressive assault Attorney General Anne Milgram is making against Internet abuses, especially those involving children.

"As we pursued our initiatives, it became clear that it was essential that our criminal and civil enforcement statutes address evolving threats posed by bad actors online," Milgram said. "This comprehensive Internet safety legislative package addresses those issues."

Milgram has already pressured social networking sites such as Facebook to better police their sites for online abuses. Her office developed a "Report Abuse!" icon that several social networking sites have agreed to display on their Web pages, making it easier to report threats and online harassment.

Networking sites that agree to display the icon must also agree to respond to complaints quickly and effectively.

The sponsor of the bills, Assemblywoman Linda Greenstein (Email), D-Hamilton, said the they would give police more tools to protect minors who use the Internet for homework or socializing.

Greenstein represents the district where a convicted pedophile raped and murdered 7-year-old Megan Kanka, sparking sexual predator notification laws known as Megan's Law.
- Yeah, and this crime had nothing to do with the internet either.

Members of the Assembly Judiciary Committee are scheduled to debate the bills Thursday.


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TX - Judge Cops Plea To Elude Sex Crime Charges

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Another view at Sentencing Law and Policy

02/23/2009

Federal Judge Pleads Guilty To Obstruction Of Justice Before Start Of Trial, Then Retires

(AP) A federal judge accused of groping two female court employees as he tried to force himself on the women and have them perform sex acts pleaded guilty on Monday to obstruction of justice in exchange for sex-related charges being dropped.

U.S. District Judge Samuel Kent, the first federal judge charged with a sex crime, retired Monday, avoiding possible impeachment by Congress.

Kent's guilty plea came as jury selection in his trial was to begin.

The jurist, who once shouted in court that he would bring "hordes of witnesses" in his defense, spoke barely above a whisper as he pleaded guilty to lying to a judicial committee investigating the sex-related charges.

"Judge Kent believes this compromise settlement was in the best interests of all involved," his lawyer, Dick DeGuerin, said in a statement. "A trial would have been embarrassing and difficult for all involved."

Kent, 59, had been facing six charges - five related to federal sex crimes and the obstruction charge, a felony that alone carries a maximum sentence of up to 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000.

Kent had vigorously maintained his innocence. DeGuerin had said the judge's conduct with the two women was mutual and consensual.

If he had been convicted of the most serious federal sex crimes charges, Kent could have received a sentence of up to life in prison.

Kent, appointed by President George H.W. Bush, has been on the bench for nearly 19 years. Federal judges are appointed for life and can only be forcibly removed through impeachment by Congress.

Prosecutors had said they would present evidence showing there was nothing consensual about what Kent did with the two women, Cathy McBroom, his former case manager, and the judge's former secretary.

The Associated Press does not normally name alleged victims of sexual abuse, but McBroom's attorney and her family have used her name in publicly discussing the case.

Both women were in the courtroom as Kent entered his guilty plea.

Authorities first investigated Kent after McBroom filed a complaint against him in May 2007 and the Judicial Council of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals began a probe.

McBroom accused Kent of harassing her over a four-year period, culminating in March 2007, when she said the judge pulled up her blouse and bra and tried to escalate contact until they were interrupted.

The judicial council suspended Kent in September 2007 for four months with pay but didn't detail the allegations against him. It also transferred him to Houston, 50 miles northwest of Galveston, where he had worked since being appointed in 1990.

A Justice Department investigation of McBroom's claims led to Kent's indictment in August on three federal sex charges.

Last month, prosecutors added two more sex charges and the obstruction charge, accusing Kent of trying to engage his former secretary in a sex act and then lying about it to the judicial council.

DeGuerin had said Kent and his secretary were involved in a longtime affair and he didn't reveal it to the judicial council because he was being a "gentleman."

The lawyer also told the presiding judge that Kent was taking medication for depression and anxiety as well as diabetes and was under the care of both a psychiatrist and a psychologist.


VT - My Turn: Term 'sex offender' misused

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02/23/2009

By Amy Hagan

What do you think of when you hear the term "sex offender?" I imagine most of you immediately envision a monster of a person, someone who is a vile and immoral creature who has been convicted as a pedophile, rapist or sexual predator. These people are a serious danger to society and should be justly convicted, incarcerated and rehabilitated as necessary.

I'll tell you something that is grossly unjust that most people are not aware of: Did you know that there are 18- and 19 year-olds who are "getting caught" engaging in consensual sex with 15- or 16-year-olds, and who are being charged and convicted as these same aforementioned "monsters?" This is due to the ambiguous nature of how our sex offender laws are written in Vermont, as well as many other states in our country. These "monsters" are not only being sentenced to prison, but are also being forced to register as sex offenders for 10 years from the date of being released from prison which means the general public immediately assumes that they must be a danger to society.

How is it that these "perpetrators" are being categorized in the same class of criminals who are considered filthy animals? And how are these ex-cons able to ever move on with their lives if both the state and the public continue to persecute them for their "mistake?"

Something is vastly wrong with our criminal and judicial systems and some serious modifications need to be made. It is an outrage that these particular "perpetrators" are becoming "victims" themselves to the propaganda that is perpetuated by these labels that are so loosely utilized and misunderstood by the media and public at large.

The term sex offender is grossly misused and I find this misrepresentation more offensive than anything. Why? Because good-hearted people are being scorned, fingers pointed at them, and accused of things that are clearly not true due to the generalized nature of the term sex offender.

Why is it that a 19-year-old has to have his or her future reputation severely sabotaged for 10 years for the mistake of expressing an act of love with a person with only a three- or four-year age difference and being classified as a "monster" because of it? Does anyone not see that this broad categorizing is a perverse means of governmental manipulation and control?

Let it be known: not all sex offenders are child molesters, rapists or sexual predators. Some may just be someone who may have made the mistake of being human and expressing the physical act of love with a teenager who is just as capable of making the same mistake. Perhaps we should stop casting stones and look at people for who they are and not for the labels that are given to them by bureaucratic dogma.


TX - Child sex cases involving women are on the rise in Texas

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02/23/2009

By WENDY HUNDLEY / The Dallas Morning News

The number of women serving time in Texas prisons for having sex with minors has increased more than 36 percent in the last five years.

"Up to five years ago, we didn't talk about this," said Keith Durkin, a criminologist and researcher at Ohio Northern University. "Our culture is becoming more aware that women can and do commit these offenses."

Collin County has its share of cases.

Last month, as a Collin County jury deliberated whether a 40-year-old Allen woman was guilty of having sex with two teenage boys, two other young men came forward with similar accusations against her.

Rather than wait for a verdict, _____ pleaded guilty to two counts of indecency with a child and was sentenced to 10 years in prison.

_____ is one of a growing number of women in Texas and nationwide accused of committing sex crimes against minors. So far this year, at least six Collin County women charged with having sex with minors – including _____ – are either being prosecuted or have already had their cases adjudicated.

Still, Durkin and other experts in the field believe society has been slow to view women as sexual predators, though that is beginning to change.

"We're biased to perceive women as nurturing ... so we don't perceive them as sex offenders," said Dr. Julia Hislop, a Virginia psychologist and author of Female Sex Offenders: What Therapists, Law Enforcement and Child Protective Services Need to Know.

Studies suggest that female sex offenders often have a history of depression and anxiety. In addition, like many of their male counterparts, women abusers also may have been sexually abused as children.

Durkin said teenage boys are ideal victims of such crimes because they're less likely to complain and, if they do, their outcries "may be dismissed as teenage fish stories."

Teacher's aide _____ was 29 when she was arrested three years ago by Frisco police on suspicion of having a sexual relationship with a male teenage student. The relationship began in May 2006 when the victim was a 14-year-old middle school student and lasted about four months, according to police documents.

_____, who is scheduled for a plea hearing Thursday, is charged with sexual assault and having an improper relationship with a student.

She could not be reached for comment.

If she goes to prison, she'll probably be enrolled there in the state's treatment program for female sex offenders, one of the first of its kind in the country.

Most of the women convicted of sex crimes against minors have had relationships with men their own age but abuse children for their own emotional needs, said Anne Mooney, supervisor of the prison treatment program, which launched in October 2000.

She said that unlike male sex offenders, who often seem to lead outwardly normal lives and have families and stable jobs, women convicted of these crimes often have chaotic lives, marked by substance abuse, frequent moves and erratic employment.

And Mooney said that most female offenders are emotionally immature and are drawn to the intensity that often marks adolescent relationships.

"They'll say, 'He acted older. He didn't act his age,' " Mooney said. "What they're really saying is that they're acting like I act. The offender is developmentally immature."

_____ was 41 in 2005 when she was arrested on charges of having sex with a 16-year-old high school student. The Frisco resident, who could not be reached for comment, pleaded guilty earlier this month and was placed on 10 years' probation for child sexual assault.

The teenage victim initially denied the two were having sex and told police that he and _____ had a special relationship, "one that nobody would understand." But during the interview, he later broke down, threatened to harm himself, and had to be taken to a mental health treatment center, documents show.

Mooney agrees with other experts who say society often trivializes the effect sex abuse has on its young male victims.

"Often the women who have sexually abused them were women they turned to as role models and substitute mother figures," Mooney said.

"That trust was violated. They'll often say, 'Why did she do that to me?' It makes a lasting impression on their view of women."