Thursday, May 1, 2014

AR - Do sex offender restrictions work?

Original Article

Short answer... NOPE!

04/30/2014

By Craig Rickert

JONESBORO (KAIT) - When we talk about sex offenders emotion tends to take over. Call it a protective instinct. We don't want them living near our children or where our children go to school or play.

The thoughts are terrifying to any parent. But as we found out, those fears, don't match the facts.

"There is no data, according to my knowledge, that sex offender registry restrictions prevent sexual assault," Sheri Flynn told Region 8 News.

Only 5-7% of all sex offenders re-offend.

It's the empirical argument that flies in the face of raw emotion when it comes to where sex offenders are allowed to live in the state of Arkansas.

The law state says level 3 and 4 sex offenders cannot reside within 2000 feet of a school, daycare or public park. Level 1 and 2 offenders do not have any such restrictions.

"We're pushing sex offenders outside that net and occasionally creating pockets of sex offenders because there's only one area in a county that they may be able to live."

Sheri Flynn is with the Arkansas Department of Correction's Sex Offender Screening and Risk Assessment Program. In laymen's terms, her office determines a sex offender's threat level.

"To me, it makes more sense to base where sex offenders can be based on what they do, the crime they commit with whom they commit it with. Those are the people we don't want around our minor children."
- Even if you did that, it still wouldn't prevent a sexual crime if the person is intent on committing a crime!

By forcing sex offenders farther away, because of the residency restrictions, they are less likely to be part of what Flynn and others in her field call "the containment approach". A belief that circling the offender with professionals from the courts, law enforcement, treatment providers and others keeps better tabs on the most dangerous sex offenders, level fours.

"There is a small sub-group. If they have a deviant sexual arousal to forced sexual contact or children, they are more than 50% likely to re-offend and they respond very poorly to treatment."

That's where Flynn sees a weakness in the residency restrictions. Simply put, if they are forced too far out, it becomes that much harder to stay on top of a dangerous predator.

"I want to know where he is, not where he isn't."
- But you can never know 100% of the time where they are or aren't, and again, males are not the only ones who commit sexual crimes!

"We don't know what he's going to do and that net disappears and those things that have been put into place by my office, by my brothers and sisters in law enforcement, we work very closely to keep an eye on these guys. When they drop off the radar we don't know what they're doing or where they are they could be up to anything."
- Yeah just like any other ex-felon, they could be anywhere doing anything!

It's a loaded question. Where should they live? But Sherri Flynn offers this: maybe when we ask legislators, or even law enforcement what to do, we're asking the wrong people.
- They should be able to live anywhere they want just like any other ex-felon!

"Sometimes I think we need to ask survivors "how does this affect you?" If your dad or grandfather got treatment, if he could get a good job would that be better? I don't know the answers to those questions, but I think we need to be asking them and try to figure it out."
- No you do not need to ask them, it's obvious what their reactions will be.  You need to stop trampling on peoples rights by God and the Constitution.


WA - Washington state police officer's (Donald Glunt) phone bill leads to child porn charges

Donald Glunt
Donald Glunt
Original Article

04/30/2014

By NICOLE HENSLEY

A peek at the phone records of a Washington state cop revealed more than 155 text messages between a teenage girl in Texas and photos of her naked body.

The copious texts listed on the phone bill of Officer Donald Glunt, 57, tipped off a sergeant and led to a meeting. He had been texting with a woman, Glunt told the sergeant, and called it a "lapse of judgment," according to court documents filed April 29.

That "woman" was actually a 16-year-old girl.

The officer had spent his entire law enforcement career at Lynden Police Department. He is also an expert on sexual predators and human trafficking and has taught classes on those subjects since 2011.

He resigned April 21 after the allegations surfaced, reported the Bellingham Herald.

In the meeting, the sergeant exchanged the phone for another - one without text messaging capabilities.

However, Glunt wanted to delete something first. The sergeant denied him the opportunity and then discovered the object of Glunt's affection: several nude photos of the teen.

The girl knew the officer as "Don from Washington," she told Texas investigators. He had recently texted her and said he was in trouble, she claimed. If the authorities called, she needed to lie about her age, he allegedly told her.

She let detectives download all the data from her cellphone, the documents said.

The two talked through texts and on an online role-playing game.

Glunt was arrested April 25 and charged with possession of child pornography.

The Washington State Patrol issued several search warrants for Glunt's work and personal property including phones, laptops and desktop computers. They found thousands of images of children that he claimed he collected for presentations on exploited kids.

Glunt told detectives he had deleted some photos from one of his laptops after his phone was taken away. He also said he used his laptop to look at porn and child modeling sites, the documents said.


CA - Sacramento County sued over sex offender ordinance

Lawsuit
Original Article

04/30/2014

By Sam Stanton

Sacramento County became the latest governmental entity Wednesday to be sued over an ordinance limiting the movements of registered sex offenders near parks and other public places, but the practical effect of the suit may be negligible.

Attorney Janice Bellucci (Website) filed the suit in U.S. District Court in Sacramento on behalf of _____, a San Luis Obispo man who is a registered sex offender and has sued other municipalities over their ordinances limiting where sex offenders may go in public.

The suit challenges a 2006 county ordinance that forbids offenders from being within 300 feet of schools, parks, video arcades and other areas where children may be present. However, the practical effect of the suit is unclear because of earlier court rulings in Southern California that invalidated similar ordinances.

An appellate court in those cases found that such ordinances are invalid and leaves the state’s Jessica’s Law, passed by voters in 2006, as the main enforcement tool over paroled sex offenders. That measure prevents sex offenders on parole from living within 2,000 feet of schools and parks.

The Orange County district attorney had been pushing for additional local ordinances in Southern California communities, but the appeals court found them invalid. That finding was appealed to the state Supreme Court, which refused to hear the matter.

Sacramento County District Attorney Jan Scully’s office also provided information to area communities on such ordinances.

Our goal was to support local ordinances that kept the children of our community safe by restricting registered sex offenders’ presence at parks and public places regularly frequented by children, consistent with the intent of Jessica’s Law and the constitution,” Scully’s office said in an emailed statement. “Unfortunately, our Legislature did not clarify Jessica’s Law with respect to this issue so the responsibility was left to local governments.”

With the potential of all or most of these ordinances being rescinded in light of the court’s ruling, the Legislature should pass appropriate laws that will complement Jessica’s Law and the intent of California voters and protect our children from easy access by sex offenders.”


DC - White House Rolls Out Guidelines to Stop Sexual Assault With Star-Studded PSA

Joe Biden
Original Article

And as usual it excludes men who are abused by other men or females, and the fact that most sexual crimes occur in the victims own home.

04/30/2014

By ANN-MARIE ALCÁNTARA

Vice President Joe Biden, Seth Meyers, Steve Carrell and other stars all have the same message in a White House public service announcement: stop sexual assault across America.

The PSA, uploaded to YouTube Tuesday, is part of the White House's new website, NotAlone.gov, a sexual assault resource page and just one of the recommendations from the First Report of the White House Task Force to Protect Students from Sexual Assault, also released Tuesday.
- It won't protect anybody!

The task force was launched in January by President Obama, with a mandate that within 90 days, the group should release steps for colleges to take in response to sexual assault across the U.S, particularly in colleges and universities.

That mandate was met on Monday, when the task force released its recommendations for U.S. colleges and universities. They include: requiring colleges to offer confidential counseling for sexual assault victims, asking schools to conduct a "climate survey" to assess sexual assault occurrences on campus and providing special support and training for school officials in handling sexual assault cases.

Part of the recommendations included the creation of NotAlone.gov, a website that allows sexual assault victims like search for services nearby, helping them understand legal terms in “plain English” and other types of information that can be misunderstood or hard to find.

The task force report also called for the PSA released Tuesday, aimed at “enlisting men as allies.” The video, which includes the actors mentioned above as well as Benicio del Toro, Daniel Craig, Dulé Hill and President Obama, says in no uncertain terms: if "she doesn’t consent or can’t," it's sexual assault and a crime.

Sexual assault cases across the U.S. are consistently reported as being mishandled, like the recent cases at Dartmouth College, Brown University, Florida State University and other schools.

One in five women is sexually assaulted while in college, according to a White House press release.

"Colleges and universities need to face the facts about sexual assault," said Vice President Joe Biden in a statement. "No more turning a blind eye or pretending it doesn't exist."