Wednesday, March 24, 2010

KS - Hire a prostitute, buy a spot on the Kansas sex offender list

Original Article

Why not put prostitutes and pimps on there as well?


Thinking of hiring a lady of the evening in Kansas? Might want to think again.

The Kansas House today endorsed legislation to target human traffickers, but not before amending the bill to put those convicted of hiring a prostitute on the state’s sex offender registry for 10 years.

The amendment’s sponsor, Rep. Mike Slattery (Email), an Mission Democrat, said the idea is to go after the demand for prostitutes, which he noted are often the victims of human trafficking.

As the father of a young daughter it is the most atrocious thing I can think about,” he said of the practice of forcing young women into the sex trade.

But to the Scarlet Letter for hiring a prostitute wouldn't be permanent.

Let’s say an 18 year old kid does something stupid,” he said. “Putting them on the sex offender list for their entire life might be overkill.”

Lawmakers in the House liked the idea and added it to the human trafficking bill before passing it. SB 359 now goes back to the Senate, which hasn’t considered Slattery’s idea.

The bill’s other components would redefine the crime of human trafficking to make it easier for police and prosecutors to go after offenders. It would also allow authorities to seize property and money from human traffickers, much in the same way that law enforcement already seizes the profits of drug dealers.

"The best way to get a bad law repealed is to enforce it strictly." - Abraham Lincoln

SC - Man Kills Stepfather, Says Man Was A Pedophile

Original Article
Another Article Here


PICKENS - A South Carolina man told authorities that he killed his stepfather "to rid the world of a pedophile."

Pickens County sheriff's deputies said 31-year-old Travis Chad Davidson was in jail on Wednesday awaiting a bond hearing on a murder charge.

Authorities say Davidson argued with 49-year-old _____ Tuesday night at _____'s home. They said Davidson threw _____ on the ground and stabbed him numerous times, leaving a kitchen knife sticking out of the man's exposed buttocks.

When they arrested him near the home, Davidson told deputies he had killed his stepfather because the victim was a pedophile.

_____ is not listed on South Carolina's sex offender registry, and deputies would not comment on Davidson's allegation.

It was not immediately clear if Davidson had an attorney.

"The best way to get a bad law repealed is to enforce it strictly." - Abraham Lincoln

NY - Former cop (Monte Montalvo) gets year in jail for molesting college girl

Original Article


By Matt Gryta

Monte R. Montalvo, a former highly decorated Buffalo police officer, today was sentenced to a 12-month local jail term on his guilty plea to a misdemeanor criminal sexual act charge for molesting a 19-year-old college girl three years ago.

State Supreme Court Justice John L. Michalski made the sentence concurrent with the one-year federal term Montalvo got in January for firearms charge.

He was fired from the police department in January 2009 after a nearly 15-year career.

Montalvo, 39, dressed in a T-shirt and jeans, began sobbing uncontrollably as his attorney, Michael G. O'Rourke, told the judge of the toll his "very emotional and traumatic divorce" caused him.

O'Rourke also stressed that Montalvo, who now has a state disability pension due to knee injuries suffered on the job, "is truly sorry" for what he did to the college student and for the distress his downfall has caused his two daughters.

Rosanne Eimer Johnson, chief of the Erie County District Attorney's Special Victims Bureau, urged the judge to "consider the impact" Montalvo's assault caused his then-19-year-old victim when he came on to her in his former Buffalo apartment shortly after they met on Dec. 2, 2007.

The prosecutor also cited what she called "the emotional harm and anxiety" the college student suffered.

Since Jan. 11 Montalvo has been serving the one-year jail term imposed by U.S. District Judge William M. Skretny on his guilty plea to unlawfully possessing a firearm while subject to an order of protection involving his former spouse.

Last Sept. 30 Montalvo, once a member of the Buffalo Police Department's elite Mobile Response Unit and a former Army military policeman, pleaded guilty to a reduced sex charge with his victim's consent.

In March 2009 Buffalo City Judge James A.W. McLeod placed Montalvo on probation for 12 months, ordered him to get a job and denounced him as a "blemish on the Police Department" for the January 2009 misdemeanor assault conviction that cost him his job.

McLeod found him guilty of attempted assault and harassment for striking a 29-year-old neighbor with a long metal rod during an argument on Aug. 21, 2008 outside his home on Baraga Street.

At Johnson's request Tuesday Michalski also issued an order of protection to Montalvo's sex crime victim, directing him to stay away from her in all respects until March 24, 2015 or face a possible state prison term.

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"The best way to get a bad law repealed is to enforce it strictly." - Abraham Lincoln

CA - How do we make Megan's Law really work?

Original Article


SAN DIEGO - Megan's Law may have been a start, but many parents are upset that it does not go far enough to protect kids from predators. A public forum in Escondido was underway Tuesday to talk about Megan's Law's problems and how to fix them.

Public outrage is intensifying over the perceived failure of legislation like Megan's Law to protect young lives such as Chelsea King's, allegedly murdered by convicted sex offender John Gardner.

Megan's Law requires the state to provide online access to a registry of sex offenders, alerting residents to where they live.

Despite seven violations, Gardner was already released from parole supervision when King was murdered. He'd registered in Lake Elsinore, although he was staying with his mother in Rancho Bernardo in the days leading up to his arrest.

A News 8 Investigation found the state's Megan's Law web site mapping out sex offenders' reported addresses to be a confusing sea of blue dots, showing hundreds of sex offenders with the same vague charge as Gardner's -- "committed a lewd act against a child" -- without explaining the circumstances or flagging the most violent offenders.

For that a courthouse records search is needed, but News 8's Jeff Zevely demonstrated that often yields no additional information. So what needs to be done?

"The number one thing that would help protect our children in this county is if the police could direct their attention like a laser beam on the highest risk offenders and not spend their time working on the medium- and low-risk offenders. That would be more productive," former district attorney Paul Pfingst said.

Pfingst acknowledges that the concern is if a low-risk ex-con reoffends, the justice system will be criticized for not focusing on them. John Gardner's lewd and lascivious act was violently beating and molesting a 13-year-old girl in 2000. Pfingst and others believe he should have been classified a high-risk offender.

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"The best way to get a bad law repealed is to enforce it strictly." - Abraham Lincoln

Sexting Penalties Get Reviewed

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"The best way to get a bad law repealed is to enforce it strictly." - Abraham Lincoln

TX - Cities work to restrict area where sex offenders can live

Original Article


By Leila Walsh

CIBOLO - More than 40 cities and towns in Texas have passed strict regulations about where registered sex offenders can live. Now, the city of Cibolo is considering a plan that would require sex offenders to live at least 2,000 feet, a little less than a half mile away from parks, playgrounds and other places where children often go.

Most people seem to support the plan. Nobody showed up to speak at a public hearing on the issue Tuesday night. The new rules would mean that 85-percent of developed areas of the city would be off limits to sex offenders. Yet, they would still be allowed to live in some areas that are less developed.
- If nobody showed up, then it's only speculation that everybody "supports" the plan.

For example, there wouldn't be any restrictions in the area that extends south from FM 78 toward I-10. News 4 WOAI visited neighborhoods in that area and some parents there told us there were upset that their streets wouldn't be off limits to sex offenders as well.

"I just don't feel that it is safe for us. There are a lot of us in this community that do have kids and I just feel that our kids are not being protected over here," Korinda Arguijo told News 4 WOAI.
- It's your job to protect your kids, not someone else's!

The police chief said he can't just come out and say that sex offenders can't live in the city at all. Instead, he said that the city is working to create some specific regulations that would keep sex offenders away from those public places where children often go. He said the area south of FM 78 doesn't have places like city parks and schools.

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"The best way to get a bad law repealed is to enforce it strictly." - Abraham Lincoln

CA - Megan’s Law is focus of Escondido public forum

Original Article


By Dana Littlefield

ESCONDIDO — About 300 people attended a community forum yesterday to learn the facts about Megan’s Law, which allows public access to information about registered sex offenders living in the community.

The two-hour meeting, held at the California Center for the Arts, was sponsored by the city and the Escondido Chamber of Commerce and featured presentations from several local and state officials, including state Sen. Mark Wyland (Contact), R-Solana Beach, and Escondido Police Chief Jim Maher.

Several speakers said the deaths of Chelsea King, 17, of Poway and Amber Dubois, 14, of Escondido prompted the forum. But they did not discuss the specifics of either girl’s case.

Assemblyman Nathan Fletcher (Contact, Video) said during the meeting the deaths of Chelsea King and Amber Dubois shed light on various flaws in the system that he and others are working to fix. In particular, he noted the need for stricter sentencing, better monitoring of sex offenders on parole, and enforcement of GPS monitoring – one of the provisions of Jessica’s Law, which was passed by voters in 2006.

I don’t believe that a sexually violent predator that goes after a child is somebody who can be rehabilitated,” Fletcher said, eliciting applause from the crowd.

Representatives from Escondido schools noted the importance of communication between parents, students and school officials. They stressed that parents should remember to pick children up in front of the schools, rather than in nearby parks or parking lots, where authorities can monitor their safety.

Megan’s Law is named after 7-year-old Megan Kanka of New Jersey, who was raped and murdered in 1994 by a convicted child molester who lived across the street from the girl’s family. The law allows public access to information about registered sex offenders.

In 1996, Congress required all states to release information to the public about convicted sex offenders, usually through CD-ROMs and databases that could be accessed at police stations.

California expanded its version of Megan’s Law in 2004, allowing sex offenders’ addresses and photos to be placed on a public Web site. However, there are some limits. Under state law, information about some sex offenders is not subject to disclosure and therefore is not included on the Web site.

Adriana Guerrero, a 19-year-old Palomar College student, attended the forum with her mother and 5-year-old brother, Jesus. She agreed with those on the panel who called for longer sentences for sex offenders who prey on children.

I think that they’re right that a sex predator that targets kids should never be let out,” said Guerrero, who has two young daughters. She also said she hoped police would increase the number of compliance checks on sex offenders, possibly to once every three months.

Mike Woods of San Marcos, who is retired from the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, said he attended last night’s meeting because he has an interest in the implementation of sex offender laws.

He said he believed we have enough laws to address the problem, but parole and law enforcement officials are “handicapped” when it comes to enforcing them, without the proper resources, technology and support from government.

"The best way to get a bad law repealed is to enforce it strictly." - Abraham Lincoln

UK - Harriet Harman's 'unreliable statistics on rape scare off victims' (How politicians distort the truth for their own gain)

Original Article


By Tim Shipman

Harriet Harman was ordered to stop misleading the public about rape by an official inquiry report yesterday.

The Equalities Minister was accused of pumping out unreliable figures about the low number of rapists brought to justice, thus discouraging victims from reporting attacks.

The review by Baroness Stern appeared to put an end to years of claims by ministers that laws and criminal procedures for dealing with rape need radical reform because only six per cent of complaints end in a conviction.

The claim was even made by Miss Harman last September on the day she set up the Stern review.

But Lady Stern, a prison reform campaigner and human rights activist, called in her report for 'an end to the widespread use of misleading rape conviction data - in particular the six per cent conviction rate figure'.

The six per cent figure relates to reported cases. In fact, the conviction rate for those actually charged with rape is nearly two out of three, higher than comparable figures for other violent crime.

The report's view is doubly humiliating for Miss Harman because it was she who set up the review.

Instead of condemning low conviction rates and demanding legal reforms - as ministers have repeatedly done over the past six years - Lady Stern said there should be more help for victims and greater use of police intelligence to track down men who serially attack and rape strangers.

Her report said: 'The figure for convictions of those charged with rape as the term is normally used is actually 58 per cent.'

'There is concern that the six per cent figure can make victims feel it is not worth reporting.'

Lady Stern added: 'The conviction rate has taken over the debate to the detriment of other important outcomes for victims.'

'Prosecuting and convicting is of course important, but my view is that support and care for victims should be as high a priority.'

'The obligations the state has to those who have suffered a violent crime, and a crime that strikes at the whole concept of human dignity and bodily integrity, are much wider than working for the conviction of a perpetrator.'

It was the second high-level slap on the wrist Labour's deputy leader has received within a year over use of statistics to further her favoured political causes.

Last summer the watchdog UK Statistics Authority accused Miss Harman of 'undermining public trust' by exaggerating the pay gap between men and women.

Baroness Stern's report criticised 'sharp failures' by police in the cases of _____, a taxi driver who was convicted of 12 attacks on women and may have committed more than 100, and _____, suspected of 71 offences.

It called for sharing of police intelligence across London boroughs and for forces to consider specialist rape units.

Lady Stern also said the Ministry of Justice should study numbers of false rape accusations. Because the alleged victim's anonymity is guaranteed by law, critics say false claims can be made with impunity.

Her report said: 'This provokes strong feelings and is surrounded by controversy, which ... plays a part in responses to rape complainants.'

Lady Stern also said there should be an end to targets for rape convictions for the police and the Crown Prosecution Service; better forensic examination of complainants; better video evidence schemes for witnesses, improved compensation procedures for victims, and more explanation of sexual offences law to young people.

Miss Harman declined to comment.

"The best way to get a bad law repealed is to enforce it strictly." - Abraham Lincoln