Saturday, August 3, 2013


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Our nation leads the world in incarceration -- more prisoners than China, a higher rate than Singapore and Iran. Let's do more to build communities through prevention, rehabilitation, and opportunity.

The American justice system is hyper-focused on incarceration as the solution to public problems. What about crime prevention? What about rehabilitation? What about job opportunities? There are cheaper, fairer ways to keep families safe than locking people up for years on end for even modest offenses. We need stronger communities, not ever-increasing incarceration. Beyond Bars use video and social media to make that case.

MN - Forest Lake: Sisters cited for fake kidnapping at Walmart

Original Article


By Elizabeth Mohr

Three of the four sisters who carried out a kidnapping stunt in the parking lot of Walmart in Forest Lake last month have been charged.

The women, ages 32, 27 and 26, were issued citations for misdemeanor disorderly conduct and misdemeanor unlawful assembly. The 27-year-old sister was also cited for careless driving, according to Forest Lake police.

Security camera footage of the July 7 incident shows a car pulling up to the Walmart, a 13-year-old bursting from the trunk and starting to run, and a woman jumping from the front passenger seat, grabbing the girl and forcing her back into the trunk.

Police would not release the names of the three older sisters, saying it would identify the juvenile.

The incident set off a metrowide search, before the sisters' mother called police to report it was her daughters who had staged the fake kidnapping. Forest Lake police interviewed the sisters and found video evidence of the prank on their cellphones, Capt. Greg Weiss said at the time.

Forest Lake police worked with other agencies, including the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, and spent more than $7,000 investigating the incident.

Forest Lake attorney Mike Welch reviewed the case and said he recommended the older sisters be charged by citation, which police did on July 25.

Any charges against the juvenile sister would go through the Washington County attorney's office.

DC - ACTION ALERT: Rep Smith Amends an Unrelated Bill to Restrict Passports for ALL Registered Sex Offenders

Original Article


In March of this year I alerted folks of a New Bill in Congress introduced by Rep. Smith of New Jersey, it was HR 898 "Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act of 2013."

Stated Intent: To authorize appropriations for fiscal years 2014 through 2017 for the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000, and for other purposes.

Nothing like seeing the "And for other purposes," the governmental catch-all-do-all phrase. While the intent is "Sex Trafficking" the wording is such that it can affect any registered sex offender traveling to other countries, which is why I bring this to everyone's attention.

Well that bill has languished in Congress with no action, in fact only ONE other person would co-sponsor the bill. Apparently that bothered Rep. Smith because now he has pulled a fast one by AMENDING another bill in such a way that the public would not know anything about that amendment until the House approved it. That is exactly what has happened.