Monday, October 1, 2012

KY - Oldham Police officer (Harry "Shane" Mosley) charged with sexting a teenager he met during traffic stop

Harry Mosley
Original Article


By Emily Hagedorn

The former Oldham County Police officer charged with having inappropriate contact with a female teenager first met her during a traffic stop, in which marijuana was found.

That’s according to a criminal complaint released Monday.

Harry “Shane” Mosley, 36, of Pendleton, was arrested Friday and charged with unlawful use of electronics to induce a minor to engage in sexual or other prohibited activities, which is a felony. He also is charged with first-degree official misconduct and third-degree unlawful transaction with a minor, both misdemeanors.

The criminal complaint filed in Oldham District Court says the traffic stop happened at about 9 p.m. Tuesday. Marijuana was found in the center console of the vehicle, which was occupied by an adult male and a minor female, both of whom are unnamed in the complaint.

Mosley issued a criminal citation to the man for possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia but did not charge the teenager, despite the fact that she also possessed the contraband, the complaint said.

The next day, Mosley, who had obtained the teen’s cell phone number, began sending her text messages while she was at school, telling her that he would not tell her family about the traffic stop if she would “prove herself to him and stay away from drugs.”

He also told her that he wanted to spend more time with her as a friend and that she needed to keep in touch with him to earn his trust, the complaint said.

The teen approached the Oldham County Police about the texts on Wednesday, the department has said.

And then on Thursday, he asked her if she liked him and about “what she wanted to do to his body, including specific sexual references.” Mosley also sent her a text message with a picture of a beer can and asked her which type of alcohol she preferred to drink, the complaint says.

It adds that he engaged in a “sexually graphic” telephone conversation with her, wherein he arranged to have sexual intercourse with her later in the week, including during school hours or late at night. He also asked her to send a pornographic photo of her to his phone.

Mosley was taken to the Oldham County Jail, and he has since been released on bond. He resigned from the Oldham County Police Department.

A court date for Mosley has not been scheduled, according to the Kentucky Court of Justice website.

GA - Monroe Attorneys Suceed in Removing Man from Sex Offender Registry

Original Article


By Sharon Swanepoel

The man did not have any sexual or felony conviction, but ended up on the registry as a result of having consensual sex with someone under the age of consent when he was young.

Monroe attorneys Crawford and Boyle reported that last week their law offices were successful in getting the name of a Barrow County man removed from the sex offender registry. Although attempts to do so are not uncommon, the difference in this case was that the man had ended up on the registry despite never having been convicted of any sexual or felony offense. According to a newsletter from the law firm, their client ended up on the registry as a result of a decision he made when he was young to have sex with someone under the age of consent.

While she was fine with it, her mother was not, resulting in charges being brought,” the newsletter reads. “The client used first offender provisions to keep the charge from becoming a conviction; however, due to an unexpected wrinkle in the law, he was required to register as a sex offender for the next decade and a half, even though his case had been discharged (dismissed).”

Crawford and Boyle report that they petitioned the Barrow County Superior Court and last week a judge agreed, signing an order that removed their client from the registry. The Georgia Bureau of Investigations then removed the man’s name from the registry.

This was certainly a victory over cookie-cutter / one-size-fits-all justice,” the attorneys claim.

TN - Audit reveals offenders monitored after their deaths

Original Article

So are they "protecting" us from a sex offender zombie apocalypse?


An audit (PDF) of the state board of parole found that annual arrest checks were completed on behalf of at least 82 parolees who had been dead, the comptroller announced Monday. In at least one case a parolee had been dead for more than 19 years.

At worst, officers documented contact indicating offenders were still alive, a news release said.

The audit also noted that many files managed by probation and parole officers were not in compliance with all board supervision requirements and were not regularly reviewed by management, according to a news release. In some cases, officers failed to complete or document their attempts to complete all of the required face-to-face contacts with parolees.

In other cases, officers did not perform required home visits of regular offenders, the release said. The audit also showed some sex offenders tracked by GPS equipment had not been properly monitored.

Inadequate supervision of offenders results in increased public risks and jeopardizes public safety,” Comptroller Justin P. Wilson said in the release. “If parole officers are supervising dead people, this is a waste of taxpayer dollars and makes us wonder about the supervision of parolees living in our communities.”

Auditors also found a number of other issues with the board of parole’s operations, including questionable practices for providing notice of hearing decisions and upcoming board meetings.

See Also:

States Still Resisting National Sex Offender Law

Original Article


By Maggie Clark

Six years ago, Congress passed the Adam Walsh Act, aimed at setting up a uniform national registry to track known sex offenders as they move around the country. The law offers states (bribery) federal funds to complete their part of the job, and 16 have secured Justice Department approval for doing it successfully. But most states have struggled to implement the law, and several have essentially abandoned efforts at compliance and left the federal money on the table.

States that did not implement their registries by July 27, 2011, face a 10 percent loss in federal justice assistance grants, which fund courts, crime labs, corrections and other law enforcement programs. The only way they can keep that money without meeting the deadline is to apply to use it for Adam Walsh Act compliance activities. Some 29 noncompliant states have agreed to do this.

But five states — Arizona, Arkansas, California, Nebraska and Texas — are simply saying “no” to the Adam Walsh Act, at least for now. They have neither complied with the law’s requirements nor applied to use their justice assistance grants to come into compliance. They have elected to forfeit 10 percent of their justice assistance funding for the coming year.
- All states should say no!  It costs too much and doesn't do what is intended.

We’re hoping that in the future, some of those five will indeed apply,” says Linda Baldwin, director of the Office of Sex Offender Sentencing, Monitoring, Apprehending, Registering and Tracking within the U.S. Department of Justice. Not applying to use the grant monies for compliance is “not necessarily a refusal,” Baldwin says. States will get another chance to use their grants for compliance in 2013.

But by then, there may be changes to the federal law, which is named for a child who was kidnapped and later murdered in south Florida in 1981. (The registry provisions of the Adam Walsh Act are formally known as the Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act, or SORNA.) In August, the U.S. House passed a reauthorization of Adam Walsh specifying that any penalty a state incurs for noncompliance with registry requirements won’t harm local law enforcement grants. The bill is waiting to be heard by the Senate Judiciary Committee.
- It has never been proven that sex was involved in Adam Walsh's murder, nor that a sex offender committed the crime.  The original intention of the law was to punish people more harshly who abuse a child in ANY form, now it's all just about sex offenders, who had nothing to do with Adam's murder.

Why Won’t States Comply?

The reasons for noncompliance vary from state to state. In Nebraska, legislators were philosophically opposed to the law’s lifetime registry requirement for juveniles. Senator Amanda McGill, a member of the Nebraska Legislature’s Judiciary Committee, says that the law as currently written could put people on the registry who don’t really belong there.

We may be putting resources in to people that don’t need it,” says McGill, “and possibly ‘scarlet-lettering’ them.

Nebraska changed its sex offender registry in 2010 to attempt compliance with the Adam Walsh Act, categorizing offenders by their convictions, not by an individualized risk assessment, as had been done in the past. But the state has not met all the federal requirements, and is not currently attempting to meet them.

Implementing the Adam Walsh Act is a heavy lift: legislatures must enact changes to the state criminal code and, depending on the state’s policy before the federal law passed, place new groups of offenders onto the public registry. Nebraska’s change forced many offenders who’d already served their sentences onto the registry or increased the length of time offenders would be publicly listed.

I hadn't been in any kind of trouble since completing probation,” testified (PDF) [name withheld], a now-lifetime registered sex offender, at a hearing before the legislature’s Judiciary Committee last fall. [name withheld] was accused of having consensual sex with a 15-year-old girl when he was 23, and pleaded no contest to second degree sexual assault of a minor with the assurance from his public defender that he would only face two or three years on probation and would not be subject to the public registry.
- So you see, they broke that contact, which is a violation of the contracts clause of the Constitution, and probably more.

I feel like I'm being punished again for the rest of my life," he said, "after serving my punishment and proving my worth by living righteously, being a good father and husband, and staying out of trouble.”
- That is exactly what is happening, ex post facto (unconstitutional) punishment for life.

Costs of Compliance

Another reason states are hesitant to comply is the price. While noncompliance does come with a penalty, it’s often dwarfed by the cost of adding more people to the public registry or staffing local law enforcement offices for the multiple check-ins per year that offenders must complete.

Texas estimated (PDF) it would cost the state at least $38 million to implement Adam Walsh, while the penalty would be only $1.4 million. California’s changes could exceed $30 million, and would result in “a less than robust sex offender registration process for the state,” says Tina Walker, chief of media relations for the California Emergency Management Agency. California still uses an individual risk assessment tool for all offenders to determine where they should appear on the registry, rather than relying on a particular conviction to determine placement, as the law requires.

There are both policy considerations and cost considerations [that come with compliance],” says Baldwin at the Department of Justice, “and in these economic times, anything that entails a burden is something that’s hotly debated.”
- Anything that has been proven not to work as intended should be hotly debated!

Arizona made its decision not to comply back in 2009, when a legislative committee found that compliance could cost more than $2 million. “Arizona’s existing sex-offender laws are believed to be sufficient,” says Matthew Benson, director of communications for Arizona Governor Jan Brewer. “In fact, our state takes a more rehabilitative approach than SORNA when it comes to juvenile offenders.”

Arizona’s attitude reflects opposition to Adam Walsh compliance that might best be described as old-fashioned federalism. “I hear some states say they feel confident that their state registries do an excellent job of protecting public safety,” says Elizabeth Pyke, director of government affairs at the National Criminal Justice Association. “They agree with the importance of sharing information across states but don’t necessarily think all aspects of SORNA’s approach to registration are better than what they already have in place. So if implementing SORNA will make them overturn long-held policies, some states may prefer sticking with their own registry systems.”

Reaction in Congress

Even though only 16 states have met the Justice Department’s requirements for substantial compliance with Adam Walsh, most of the rest are active in monitoring sex offenders. All but six states are part of the SORNA Exchange Portal, a tool developed by the Department of Justice to help states share information about offenders who move from one state to another. The receiving state can access information about an offender, and alert the offender’s home state if he or she does or doesn’t arrive.

Participation in the portal achieves one of the goals of the Adam Walsh Act — creating a national information-sharing network. But it doesn’t get all the way there. Without full state compliance, the type of offender who shows up on any given level of the registry may still vary between one state and another.

On Capitol Hill, states’ concerns about the Adam Walsh Act are starting to be heard. U.S. Representatives Bobby Scott of Virginia and John Conyers of Michigan both referred to the act as an “unfunded mandate” to the states during testimony on its reauthorization earlier this year. In addition to modifying the penalty provisions, the reauthorization bill no longer requires that juveniles convicted of sex offenses publicly register for life, and allocates nearly $3 million in state funding for sex offender treatment for juveniles.

The House bill has been referred to the Senate Judiciary Committee, but won’t be considered there until at least mid-November, when the Senate returns following the elections.

FAIR - RSOL National Conference

A total of 5 members of FAIR (Facebook) were able to attend the RSOL national conference in New Mexico. These are some of our experiences and impressions.

Juvenile Sex Offenders: Locked Up for Life?

Original Article


By Scott Michels

Medical experts raise questions about indefinite civil commitment for troubled youths

At 21, [name withheld] has spent nearly half his life in confinement.

When he was 13, [name withheld] was sent to a juvenile detention center for raping and sexually abusing a younger relative over a period of years. When he was 17, [name withheld] became the youngest person indefinitely committed to South Carolina’s adult violent sex offender treatment program, according to court testimony.

The government initially placed [name withheld] in a restricted wing and assigned a staff member to stay with him to protect him from the other residents, many of them middle-aged child molesters, a program psychologist testified earlier this year.

Four years after his civil commitment, [name withheld] is asking the South Carolina Supreme Court to order his release. Though experts for the state Attorney General’s Office say [name withheld] is still dangerous, a psychologist at the sex offender commitment center testified at a court hearing earlier this year that [name withheld] has not shown signs of sexually violent behavior since before he was 13, and should be released.
- So basically they are saying that the "experts" at the AG's office know better than the true experts who have been working with the kid since he was admitted?  Sounds to me like the AG is just protecting itself, and doesn't want to let the kid out and he possibly re-offend, making them look bad, to some people.

[name withheld] was at best 11 years old when he committed his crime; he was a child,” said Brana Williams, [name withheld]’s attorney.

And now he may be locked up for the rest of his life. This is why they say you should not get life without parole when you’re that young. You’re not who you’re going to be.”

At least 10 states allow some form of juvenile sex offender civil commitment, according to research compiled by the Defender Association of Philadelphia. In four of those states, at least 52 adults—not including [name withheld]—are currently indefinitely committed as sex offenders as a result of crimes they committed when they were juveniles, state departments of corrections and mental health said in response to inquiries from JJIE.

The six other states either do not track such commitments or did not respond to requests for information in time for publication.

‘Worst of the Worst’

The juvenile offenders are described by prosecutors as the “worst of the worst”—those likely to commit another sex crime and therefore too dangerous to release.
- Prosecutors jobs are to lock people up, period, they are not experts who treat people who have committed sexual crimes, so their biased opinions, in our opinion, are not worth a grain of salt!

But some mental health experts who specialize in the treatment and risk assessment of juvenile sex offenders say civil commitments raise troubling questions. In many cases, these experts say they cannot reliably predict whether a young person who has committed a sex crime will grow up to become a dangerous sex offender.
- But somehow the AG and prosecutors "can?"

If someone says I want to protect the public from the very small number of individuals who are highly dangerous, but I don’t want to put children in institutions for things they might have done, the reality is you cannot have it both ways,” said Mark Chaffin, a director at the Center for Child Abuse and Neglect at the University of Oklahoma Heath Sciences Center.

A very small number of kids are really likely to do horrible things,” Chaffin added in an interview with JJIE. “If you want to protect the public, the price you pay is that you will harm probably a larger number of children who are not going to commit crimes.”

That’s what no one really wants to face.”

In a series of cases over the last eight years, the Supreme Court has signaled a shift in how the law treats underage criminals.

In 2005, the Court banned mandatory death penalty for juveniles in Roper v Simmons (PDF). Five years later, in Graham v. Florida, the Court barred mandatory life without parole sentences for juveniles who were not convicted of murder; and in June this year (PDF) it ruled that all mandatory life without parole sentences for juveniles violated Constitutional protections against “cruel and unusual punishment.”

The justices’ decisions were based in part on briefs from medical experts arguing that juveniles’ under-developed brains, immaturity and impulsiveness made them less culpable for their actions. Because of that immaturity, the Court wrote (PDF) in 2005, “juvenile offenders cannot with reliability be classified among the worst offenders.”