Tuesday, December 31, 2013

FL - Number of registered sex offenders increasing in Pinellas County

Morning coffee and newspaper
Original Article


By Andrew Doud

PINELLAS COUNTY - The Pinellas County Sheriff's Office keeps track of roughly 1,800 sex offenders in the county and that number is going up.

We showed Tricia Chaney a map showing the number of registered sex offenders within a five mile radius of where she was walking with her 13-month-old daughter near Largo Central Park.

"That is not comforting. Not at all," Chaney said.

Deputies have the same information, even more, and check on each person two to four times each year to make sure they are where they're supposed to be.

In the last 13 years, the number of sexual offenders in Pinellas County has tripled.

Detective Scott Summers with the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office says when he started there were only 600 offenders in the county.

Within the last five years, the number of sex offenders has gone up 21 percent.

He said there are a couple of reasons for the increase:

Once a person is a registered sexual offender, they're on the list for life.

Summers also says other counties have stricter restrictions on where offenders can live. Pinellas only enforces the state law.

"Many counties have an ordinance which is much stricter than the state law and it keeps them from living say, 2,500 feet from a church or a school or a daycare, whereas state law is 1000 feet," said Summers.

He says ensuring offenders have a place to live makes them easier to keep track of and less likely to offend.

IN - US woman (Bonita Lynn Vela) cuts 'molester's' penis with box cutter

Bonita Lynn Vela
Bonita Lynn Vela
Original Article


A woman accused of slicing a man’s genitals with a box cutter, because she believed he molested her 2-year-old son, has been arrested.

Police were called to a mobile home in Johnson County, Indiana, where they spoke with a man, who had blood stains and a cut on his penis, Fox59 reports.

The man claimed his girlfriend’s mother - Bonita Lynn Vela - had held him captive, refusing to release him until he allowed her to cut his penis.

Police said Ms Vela told him "she wanted to scar him so that he would have to look at it every time that he had sex in the future."

In a written statement, he described Ms Vela as "extremely mad" and "out of control" and said she threatened to turn him in for molestation, in spite of the man’s denials.
- She should've contacted the police in the first place, now she's probably going to go to jail or prison.

He told investigators Ms Vela was "going to take him out, shoot him in the head and tie him to a tree so the animals (would) eat him." He said she then told him to drop his pants so she could "cut his (expletive)". If he didn’t comply, "she was going to have people hold him down and she would cut (his penis) all the way off," the report said.

Ms Vela said she had been at a friend’s house where she smoked marijuana, and was unsure "if that was the only drug she ingested".

Around 3am she had a friend fetch her daughter’s boyfriend, so she could demand to know if he had molested her son. Her "anger just grew" throughout the encounter, the report said.

Ms Vela’s initial efforts to draw blood failed, after which she switched to a box cutter. The man said Ms Vela told him to "choose his life or his penis".

Ms Vela claims she had the box cutter in her hand, but the man knocked it away and that that is how the man’s penis was cut. Ms Vela asked police "several times how (the man) was doing and wondered if he was going to ‘make it,’" the report said. She told investigators that she never intended to hurt him and wanted to scare him.
- So then you did intend on harming him!

Ms Vela was taken to the Johnson County Jail on charges of criminal confinement with a deadly weapon and battery with a deadly weapon.

Police said the investigation into the molestation claim is ongoing.

STEP AHEAD - Career planning for people with criminal convictions

Original Article

STEP AHEAD helps job seekers with felony convictions and other criminal charges know their work options, set goals, get training, and be successful in their job search.

Start with the Assess Yourself section, or a different section that interests you.

STEP AHEAD Workbook (307 KB, .pdf)