Monday, July 18, 2011

CANADA - Hudak vows to make sex offenders wear GPS devices

Original Article

Just the usual fear-mongering, ignorant politicians exploiting fear and sex offenders to make himself look good to the sheeple. And I wonder how much money he has invested in the GPS market?

07/18/2011

Nearly 14,000 registered sex offenders in Ontario could soon be wearing GPS tracking devices if Progressive Conservative Leader Tim Hudak has his way.

There is currently no way for the police to track the movements of “these predators” in the province, Hudak said Monday.
- Like usual, he thinks sex offender, pedophile, child molester, predator all equal the same.

But if the Tories are elected Oct. 6, Hudak vowed to make sure global positioning systems are placed on all registered sex offenders so authorities can track where they are.

When (a) child is at the playground or at school or the neighbours I want to know everything possible is being done to keep them safe,” Hudak said. “Families know that having 14,000 people on Ontario’s sexual offender registry and living in our communities is a significant reason for concern.”
- And since the registry is apparently not sufficient, or to help himself look better, he wants to further punish ex-sex offenders whom have served their time, just so you will elect him, and the sheeple fall for it every single election! Politics as usual!

The cost of the GPS monitoring program would be about $50 million but provincial Solicitor General Jim Bradley said in order to use effective technology the price tag would actually be “quadruple” that.

Hudak said sex offenders on the registry would be required to wear the GPS 24 hours a day. The devices are normally worn on the ankle.

Follow The Leader
Three Canadian provinces use this technology along with 40 American states.
- So, just because someone else violated peoples privacy rights, civil/human rights, doesn't mean you should follow as well. If they all jumped down a hole, would you follow? Probably!

However, Bradley said the technology isn’t where it should be yet. He added the issue hasn’t been a priority in his meetings with the Ontario Association of Chiefs of Police.

What you don’t want is the police spending all their time chasing electronic impulses if they are inaccurate,” said Bradley.

New Democratic Party MPP Michael Prue (Beaches-East York) didn’t dismiss the use of GPS outright.

I’m not going to just completely dismiss the idea put forward today because I think it needs some study,” he said. “Everybody believes children should be protected.”
- <sarcasm on> Since most kids are sexually abuse by their own parents or family, if it saves one child, should'nt everyone just kill themselves to save the children? <sarcasm off>

This is Hudak’s latest tough-on-crime pledge leading up to the Oct. 6 election. He also wants to make the sex offender registry public and put provincial inmates on chain gangs. The inmates would pick up garbage along highways, cut grass and clean graffiti.

On the backs of sex offenders
Hudak accuses Premier Dalton McGuinty of being silent on crime. “I guess McGuinty thinks it is more important to protect the privacy of registered sex offenders than to protect the rights of hard-working families,” Hudak said.
- This is why I hate politics. The bickering, acting like children, all for votes and a huge government pay check.

But Bradley said the Tories aren’t “thinking things through” carefully as to what works and what doesn’t. He pointed out some Ontario prisons house dangerous convicts and Hudak’s chain gang plan could endanger the public.

They just grab onto an idea that sounds great at first glance … but they aren’t very practical or effective,” said Bradley.
- Exactly, anything for votes!


MD - Falsely accused man awarded $852K

Original Article

07/14/2011

By HEATHER RAWLYK

Unfounded allegations of child sexual abuse cost a Severn man months of quality time with his two young daughters and his job as a mortgage consultant with a local bank.

A county jury found that the false light put on [accused name withheld] and the punitive damages he incurred after his ex-wife falsely accused him of sexually abusing their children were worth $850,000.

Last week's decision came more than a year after another county Circuit Court judge awarded [accused name withheld] full custody of his girls, now 7 and 8 years old.

[accused name withheld] was seeking $13 million in damages from his ex-wife, [ex-wife name withheld] of Hanover, in a two-day civil hearing in Circuit Court in Annapolis.

According to [accused name withheld]'s attorney, Lorraine Lawrence-Whittaker, the couple had two young daughters. In 2005, the couple divorced. They entered into a custody agreement under which each parent would have equal time with the children.

But two months into the agreement, trouble began, [accused name withheld] testified in court. He said he was scheduled to have the girls over for Christmas 2005. As the holidays approached, his ex-wife said she wanted the children with her.

[accused name withheld] said his ex-wife sent county police to his home, alleging that the children were in trouble and that he was trying to take them out of town.

The following February, on Valentine's Day, [accused name withheld] had custody over his eldest daughter while his ex-wife had their youngest girl. After that visit, it was alleged that [accused name withheld] sexually abused his eldest daughter during the visit. The allegations were investigated and ruled unfounded.

Over the next two years [accused name withheld] was accused of sexually assaulting both daughters seven more times. All of the accusations were ruled unfounded. He testified last week that as the allegations accumulated, questioning by detectives went from hour-long talks to two- to three-hour interrogations.

During the investigations, he lost custody of his children. After an allegation in March 2006, [accused name withheld] wasn't allowed to see his girls for nine months. Starting in September 2007, following a separate allegation, he went six weeks without being allowed to see his girls.

The false reports also affected his job.

In 2006, sometime after his company's human resources department was notified of a court subpoena for child sexual assault, [accused name withheld] was let go from his job at the bank, he testified. He was not able to find work with a bank until January of this year, he said.
- This is what is wrong with society.  Instead of giving the man the benefit of doubt, and put him on temporary leave, until the court case is decided, they just assumed he was guilty and fired him.

All eight allegations, between February 2006 and March 2008, were first made to a therapist that [ex-wife name withheld] took her girls to see. It is mandatory for therapists to report sexual abuse of minors that they learn about in private sessions.

Lawrence-Whittaker said the girls' mother was the only person alleging sexual assault to the therapist on behalf of her daughters. She said [ex-wife name withheld] would tell the therapist that the girls confided to her about the repeated sexual abuse.

But the girls denied to various parties, including court-appointed officials, that anything ever happened.

In February 2010, after a two-day trial, Circuit Court Judge Paul F. Harris Jr. ruled that the allegations were false and that [accused name withheld] did nothing to his children. Harris reversed the earlier custody decision, giving primary custody to [accused name withheld]. The girls' mother now gets visitation.

Lawrence-Whittaker said the case since has gone to the Court of Special Appeals, which upheld Harris' ruling.

[accused name withheld] testified that the years of false allegations damaged his relationship with his daughters. He said he has become withdrawn with the girls and is afraid to do things normal parents do - like hug or snuggle with his children while watching a movie.

"I don't let them stay in my room a lot," he said. "I have to distance myself from them, no matter how much I care about them, because of the way things have transpired."

"… I don't want to put myself into a position like that at all."

[ex-wife name withheld]'s attorney, Michael G. Morin, said [accused name withheld] did not suffer enough to get the money he was demanding.
- Well, let Michael G. Morin get accused of the same, then see how he changes his mind.

He said his client didn't publicly accuse her ex-husband.

"He has suffered zero damages except his ego," Morin said.

He called [accused name withheld]'s lawsuit "a shot at the lottery."

But the jury thought differently, awarding [accused name withheld] $2,000 in attorney's fees for malicious prosecution, $800,000, including attorney's fees, for being placed in a false light, and $50,000 in punitive damages.

The hearing was a chance for [accused name withheld] to defend himself, his attorney said.

It was his "one chance to come before a jury and tell his story and tell what the allegations of sexually abusing your two young daughters do to you," Lawrence-Whittaker said.

"She dragged him through the mud," she said.

[ex-wife name withheld] said she simply communicated her concerns of sexual abuse based on what her daughters were telling her and the emotional behavior that took place during those times.


OH - State rep (Robert Mecklenborg) caught driving drunk with stripper quits legislature

Robert Mecklenborg
Original Article

So, will he be on the state sex offender registry?

07/17/2011

By Darrel Rowland

An embattled Cincinnati-area state representative quit this afternoon, caught up in controversy after being arrested for drunken driving in Indiana with a stripper in his car and Viagra in his system.

By making his resignation effective Aug. 2, Robert Mecklenborg, R-Green Township, ensured himself that he will be paid for all of July; if he had quit this month his legislative salary would have been pro-rated.

"My recent actions have become a distraction to the additional important work that lies ahead for the members of the 129th General Assembly. Therefore, it is with a heavy heart that I resign from the Ohio House of Representatives," he said in a statement today.

"Most importantly, I want to sincerely apologize for any pain and embarrassment I have caused my family, my constituents, and my colleagues. I will be forever grateful to the many constituents and colleagues who have urged me to stay, but I believe it is in the best interests of my family and my constituents to step aside during this difficult time."

His resignation letter to House Speaker William G. Batchelder, R-Medina, was a mere two sentences.

Batchelder, who indicated late last week that the resignation was only a matter of time, said in a statement, "Bob has admitted his mistakes and, while difficult, I believe he has made the appropriate decision to step down as a member of the Ohio House of Representatives."

The House's No. 2 GOP leader, Lou Blessing of Cincinnati, said in the same statement: "As a friend and fellow member from Hamilton County, I believe Bob Mecklenborg has provided valuable insight on a number of legislative issues over the years. His service will be missed but I am pleased that he has appropriately decided to put the interests of his family and constituents first by stepping down from the Ohio House."

Mecklenborg was chairman of the House State Government and Elections Committee and sponsored a controversial bill that would require Ohioans to provided a photo ID before being allowed to vote. He also belonged to the Judiciary and Ethics Committee.

The latest blow against the GOP representative came last week when it was learned that four days after he was charged with DUI, Mecklenborg signed a driver's-license application in Ohio saying that he did not have any outstanding vehicle citations. Mecklenborg, 59, had an expired driver's license when he was pulled over by an Indiana state trooper April 23.

A three-term legislator who did not attend last week's House session, has pleaded not guilty to DUI and is scheduled to appear in court July 26. A dashboard camera video showed him repeatedly telling the trooper that he had not had anything to drink, even as he failed three field sobriety tests.


PA - Pennsylvania doesn't expect Megan's Law fine

Original Article

07/18/2011

By Chuck Biedka

Pennsylvania won't meet a July deadline to modify its sex offender laws, but state officials are confident they will be exempted from a fine.
- Why should they be exempt?

The federal government is threatening to withhold 10 percent of some Department of Justice (DOJ) grants for states that miss the July 27 deadline to comply with the Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act.

That could amount to almost $2 million for Pennsylvania based on the average allocated to the state in recent years.
- But as said before, overall, it will cost a lot more to comply with the laws.

So far, Pennsylvania is among 40 states that haven't won final approval of sex-offender laws from the federal office that supervises the federal program.

States must reapply to get the withheld money returned to implement sex offender law changes, but there is no guarantee that they will get the money back.

Gov. Tom Corbett's chief spokesman Kevin Harley said the state "substantially complies" with the act and is formally asking the DOJ to waive the potential fine.

"We haven't received an official submission from Pennsylvania. Until we do and have issued a decision to the state, we cannot comment or speculate on any penalty or compliance issues.," said Scott G. Matson, a senior policy advisor for the federal oversight office.

Harley said state officials are confident the exemption will be granted because the state has taken numerous steps, including updating the state police sexual offender's web site.

Two offender-reporting loopholes have been closed by Pennsylvania lawmakers.

In addition, an overall corrective bill is in the Senate Judiciary committee awaiting action when the General Assembly is back in session in September, Harley said.

SB1130 (PDF) is sponsored by Sen. Jane Orie, R-McCandless, and cosponsored by Judiciary Committee Chairman Stewart R. Greenleaf, R-Bucks, Montgomery, and many others.

The measure strengthens reporting requirements for sexual offenders and better protects the welfare of victims, Orie said.

The bill also calls for, in some cases, using the names of juvenile sex offenders on the Megan's Law web site. Juvenile offenders wouldn't be designated as lifetime offenders unless they were convicted as adults, she said.

"I don't anticipate losing the federal money," she said.

State Sen. Jay Costa, D-Allegheny, said the bill has been revised by Senate and House staffers as well as the governor's staff.

"It's my understanding that the administration is working to do whatever it can to apply for an exemption" to the fine, Costa said.

"We're making sure it meets the Justice Department criteria," said Steve Miskin, an aide for House Speaker Samuel Smith, a Republican who represents Jefferson County and parts of Armstrong and Indiana counties.

Miskin said legislative leaders and the Corbett administration are "keen to get this done."