Sunday, May 4, 2008

MI - ‘More than one’ inmate involved

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Of course they are not giving the name out... Got to protect the "Good Ole' Boys!" If it were an average citizen, their name would be in this article.

05/04/2008

A Michigan State Police lieutenant confirmed Thursday that there is “more than one” Livingston County Jail inmate who may have been victimized by a now former sheriff’s road patrol deputy under investigation for alleged criminal sexual conduct with female inmates.

It is alleged that the incidents occurred during transports between the jail and the Judicial Center, both located on Highlander Way in Howell, between October and April 25, the date the former deputy was suspended, Sheriff Bob Bezotte said Thursday.

The deputy, a 12-year veteran of the department, resigned Tuesday after an internal investigation “found validity to the complaint,” the sheriff noted. He declined to elaborate.

Bezotte and Detective First Lt. Gene Kapp of the state police’s headquarters in Lansing declined to say how many women have come forward or how many, if any, additional victims may exist. Both also declined to specify what the allegations include.

“The original complaint was touching only,” Bezotte noted.

However, two Livingston County sheriff’s lieutenants’ subsequent investigation revealed additional women alleging more serious incidents than touching, Bezotte said. He declined to be more specific, citing the ongoing investigation.

“Everything is documented on who (the former deputy) transported,” the sheriff said. “We’ll have the opportunity to talk to those people.”

Bezotte said Thursday that officials were still trying to determine how many women that included. Kapp said he has assigned two detectives to investigate “allegations of criminal sexual conduct” against the former deputy, whom both Kapp and Bezotte declined to identify.

Bezotte said the former deputy has no prior discipline issues and the alleged incidents were consensual in nature.

“We aggressively investigated this case even though it was detrimental to our department,” Bezotte said. “We don’t want people in this department (who) are violating the law.”

On Wednesday, Bezotte said the entire department is “devastated” by the incident.

Contact Daily Press & Argus reporter Lisa Roose-Church at (517) 552-2846 or at lrchurch@gannett.com.


UT - New rules take effect for Utah sex offenders face new rule

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05/04/2008

New legislation will soon require sex offenders to register more often and disclose additional information including financial accounts, employer information and Internet usage such as chat room usernames and gaming aliases.

Effective May 5, the new requirements not only increase paperwork for the registry process but will add four additional offenses to the list of crimes that require those convicted to enroll on the registry.

Voyeurism, attempted kidnapping, aggravated kidnapping and unlawful detention will, after May 5, be offenses that require a person to register on Utah’s state sex offenders registry.

All it takes is one person to peak through your window and get caught and that class-B misdemeanor now requires the person to register as a sex offender for years,” said Adult Probation and Parole Agent Dennis Simonson.

The change stems from the passage of House Bill 492 — the Sex Offender Notification and Registration, or SONAR bill that passed both house and senate in the 2008 general legislative session.

The nearly 800 line bill modifies the registration requirements for current and future sex offenders and increases the content of the registry.

Offenders will now be required to document all owned property including secondary addresses, detailed vehicle information, professional licenses, educational institution affiliation and volunteer information.

“All this information, instead of being required to provide within five days, is now required after three days after any change,” Simonson added.

Any violation of the content requirements or timely admission will be listed as a third-degree felony — an increase from the class-A misdemeanor formerly charged, he added.

Costs for the intensified registry are increased to $100 and will be absorbed by the offenders for their yearly registration.

A press release from the Utah Department of Corrections said the bill moves Utah closer to the full implementation of the federal Adam Walsh Act.

Previously, offenders were required to register yearly on their birth month, “Now, they’ll have to register in their birth month and six months later,” Simonson said.

After May 5, existing offenders will receive a letter from the Department of Corrections that states the new laws and how to proceed to fully comply with the new requirements.

The complete sex offender registry will available for online viewing.


Human and Civil Rights are NOT a matter of public opinion!!!!

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04/23/2008

By richienevitt

I’m not Anti-War, I am very militant and would front line a defense war, not this, this is a senseless invasion. From the beginning of this not one thing has added up except for deception, dishonesty, and fraud in our country. Our nation is becoming incredibly delusional, all the sudden the effects that christened America so great has become discarded. Our country was proud and magnificent because of our principles on life, liberty, and justice. Now that is all expendable and out-dated. Our own country is torturing people, utilizing covert prisons, attacking our freedom of speech, arresting American citizens without a warrant, prosecuting without a trial, what's more even without a lawyer. Our own country has invaded our rights to privacy, listening in on our phone calls, reading our e-mail, and they are monitoring our homes with satellites and through our cell phones even when they are turned off. This is the war I see, it’s a war on our children and our rights! Sex Offenders are the other form of terrorist according to the government, because you don’t know who they are or where they are. So the government says to protect us and our children they will implant V Chips, not only in us, but in our cars, passports, identification, and run surveillance on our streets, homes, friends, and conversations. 96.5% of sex offenders are family members or friends to the victim, 97% are male, and only 3.5% of convicted sex offenders reoffend... Therefore the odds are YOU are more of a threat to commit a sex offense than a "sex offender". Mull over that for a moment. What will the next set of laws be? Will they treat us more like criminals than they currently are over of statistics like these? Will we again support them for the reasons or justifications of “good intentions”? In fact I have already seen the question that leads to this, they said, ("We need to constantly ask "Legislators," why they continually focus new more restrictive legislation on ALL registered sex offenders, when they have the lowest recidivism rate, and legislators ignore the group committing "96.5% of new sex offenses," persons who have never before committed a sex offense?") Ready for the next set of laws??? How can we prosecute people for life knowing how easy it is to be charged and convicted of a sex offense? Do you realize how many death row inmates have been found innocent due to D.N.A.? They convict sex offenders every day with merely ones word against anothers, today, a simple lie can wreck your life! How do V Chips, satellites, surveillance, and treating us like criminals stop our children from having a sexual encounter, protect our credit, or save us from terrorists that our government antagonizes? We let them ignore Americans rights because we agree with the “good intentions” they sell us. Isn’t that what the Bible states the path to Hell is paved with? Did you know since that registry began the recidivism rate has increased, not declined, and the rate of sex offenses has not changed? There have however been thousands of vigilante attacks that have gotten an estimated 4000 innocent people hurt and even killed by mistaken identity or wrong addresses all together. In one case a pregnant woman was burned alive for nothing she had done. I have heard of “American justice” before, but it was in times when a guilty man unjustly went free. Not on a man who served HARD time in prison, not after the humiliation of refacing the public, and never after he was continually punished during and after his parole by the state. Now we harass or kill his family and friends as well? Is this what we have become? We now allow rights to be ignored? Hitler used the media, fear mongering tactics, and created monsters to use as justifiable leverage against peoples rights, turned the people against one another, tortured people, held secret prisons, and reversed the impact of the word "WAR" till it was a good thing to happen to a nation. He too painted himself the protector and guardian. It makes me wonder if it is just a coincidence that Bushs’ grandfather worked for and with Hitler. How are we keeping out terrorists if we can’t keep out drugs? How does opening our borders protect our borders? If this is what our country has become maybe the “terrorist” have us pegged and we deserve whatever we get. I for one do not need the government to protect my children and still hope we are a great and proud country because of our freedom, honor, fairness, and morals. To those who feel our rights are not under attack: The 14th century torture our government is practicing violates the Geneva Convention and international treaties. Your argument is that it is not “torture”, because our government says it is not torture unless it results in death or organ failure. By that definition it can be excruciating pain and can continue for years. Surveillance issued and imposed without probable cause or even with specific details, warrantless wiretaps-a violation of the 4th! Pervasive secrecy threatens the 1st! The detentions of American citizens designated as enemy combatants defy the 6th Amendment rights, and the interrogation techniques fall under cruel and unusual by the 8th Amendment. Have you heard of Habeas Corpus? Not to mention the sex offenders. They didn’t just bend the rights there, they broke the constitution on them! Do you realize the impact this will have in our future, the newly expanded powers our future leaders inherit? Who says they will use them for good? Over 600,000 brave, truly patriotic men died for these rights that are being ignored. Anyone who would support breaking them is NOT patriotic Americans!!! I try to support our troops, but I will NOT support our government or this invasion. That embedded propaganda that “they fight for our freedom” is misinterpreted. When you are being told that, they are talking about Iraqi freedom, not ours, and both of which would incidentally be lies. Iraq is far from free and that isn’t changing anytime soon. By free they mean democratic, and by that definition it is America who is under attack. Our freedom IS under attack, our constitution IS in peril. What we thought were solid constitutional principles have been altered or readapted if deemed an obstacle to there scheme. They have painted us pictures with dubious intelligence and past crimes in order to make us supporters. They deplore, constraint, and attack dissent so we argue instead of speaking like real Americans who would challenge and protect our rights. What, because people were being hurt over there it justifies our bombing of thirty of their major cities killing all those innocents, after bombing them for the past 10 years? Where would our country be if our personal wars were exploited by other countries? Example, over 600,000 people died in our war between the North and South. Should Russia or China have played a role in that war? I personally don’t think so. Our government has been financing their wars for forty years! Why do you think they were so sure they would find the "weapons" over there? Maybe because our government gave them these things, but were surprised to find they were gone. Think about what your facts are for supporting this war, are they even relevant to what is happening. Why did our government destroy their water supply, Are their civilians part of this war? All the innocent children and elderly, don’t they matter? I am not delusional, I look at the facts and the fact is if we are under attack it is our government who is attacking us. Persons convicted of a CRIME have a circle of people around them, their Zone of Associations, their family (often with children), friends, business associates, and their daily contacts. Finally, when rights of persons PREVIOUSLY convicted of a CRIME are diminished, it effects not only that person, but every person in their Zone of Associations -everyone suffers-, including their children! If government can diminish rights of -anyone or a group-, then it has the power to diminish rights of everyone! Someday, every door may knock!


CT - First dorms were coed, now rooms are, too

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I bet when people start getting charged with sex crimes, then they'll wish they never did this.

05/02/2008

At least two dozen colleges allow students to mix it up in living quarters

Erik Youngdahl and Michelle Garcia share a dorm room at Connecticut’s Wesleyan University. But they say there’s no funny business going on. Really. They mean it.

They have set up their beds side-by-side like Lucy and Ricky in “I Love Lucy,” and avert their eyes when one of them is changing clothes.

“People are shocked to hear that it’s happening and even that it’s possible,” said Youngdahl, a 20-year-old sophomore. But “once you actually live in it, it doesn’t actually turn into a big deal.”

In the prim 1950s, college dorms were off-limits to members of the opposite sex. Then came the 1970s, when male and female students started crossing paths in coed dormitories. Now, to the astonishment of some Baby Boomer parents, a growing number of colleges are going even further: coed rooms.

At least two dozen schools, including Brown University, the University of Pennsylvania, Oberlin College, Clark University and the California Institute of Technology, allow some or all students to share a room with anyone they choose — including someone of the opposite sex. This spring, as students sign up for next year’s room, more schools are following suit, including Stanford University.

As shocking as it sounds to some parents, some students and schools say it’s not about sex.

Instead, they say the demand is mostly from heterosexual students who want to live with close friends who happen to be of the opposite sex. Some gay students who feel more comfortable rooming with someone of the opposite sex are also taking advantage of the option.

“It ultimately comes down to finding someone that you feel is compatible with you,” said Jeffrey Chang, a junior at Clark in Worcester, Mass., who co-founded the National Student Genderblind Campaign, a group that is pushing for gender-neutral housing. “Students aren’t doing this to make a point. They’re not doing this to upset their parents. It’s really for practical reasons.”

Cases of 'roomcest'
Couples do sometimes room together, an arrangement known at some schools as “roomcest.” Brown explicitly discourages couples from living together on campus, be they gay or straight. But the University of California, Riverside has never had a problem with a roommate couple breaking up midyear, said James C. Smith, assistant director for residence life.

Most schools introduced the couples option in the past three or four years. So far, relatively few students are taking part. At the University of Pennsylvania, which began offering coed rooms in 2005, about 120 out of 10,400 students took advantage of the option this year.

At UC Riverside, which has approximately 6,000 students in campus housing, about 50 have roommates of the opposite sex. The school has had the option since 2005.

Garcia and Youngdahl live in a house for students with an interest in Russian studies. They said they were already friendly, and didn’t think they would be compatible with some of the other people in the house.

“I had just roomed with a boy. I was under the impression at the time that girls were a little bit neater and more quiet,” Youngdahl said. “As it turns out, I don’t see much of a difference from one sex to the other.”

Garcia, 19, admitted: “I’m incredibly messy.”

Parents aren’t necessarily thrilled with boy-girl housing.

'One of my really good friends'
Debbie Feldman’s 20-year-old daughter, Samantha, is a sophomore at Oberlin in Ohio and plans to room with her platonic friend Grey Caspro, a straight guy, next year. Feldman said she was shocked when her daughter told her.

“When you have a male and female sharing such close quarters, I think it’s somewhat delusional to think there won’t be sexual tension,” the 52-year-old Feldman said. “Maybe this generation feels more comfortable walking around in their underwear. I’m not sure that’s a good thing.”

Still, Feldman said her daughter is partly in college to learn life lessons, and it’s her decision. Samantha said she assured her mom she thinks of Caspro as a brother.

“I’m really close to him, and I consider him one of my really good friends,” she said. “I really trust him. That trust makes it work.”


ME - Sex-offender list needs revision, but carefully

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05/04/2008

Maine's sex offender registry is a publicly available list of those convicted of a sex crime since 1982. Most of the listings contain home addresses. Sex offenders are required to register for 10 years or for life, depending on the seriousness of their crime. According to state officials, about 3,000 people are on the list at any given time.

Since the murder of two Maine men in April 2006 by a Canadian citizen who chose his victims' names at random from the list, state lawmakers have talked about whether all those whose names appear on the list merit the public shame and loss of privacy.

Should someone who committed a relatively minor crime -- a flasher, perhaps -- be forced to wear the metaphorical scarlet letter of inclusion on the list? Should someone who committed a sex offense 25 years ago -- but who has been law-abiding and a pillar of the community since then -- remain on the list?

The question became more than just theoretical after the state's highest court ruled last year that the law requiring registration for a substantial subset of offenders might be unconstitutional. A number of other cases are pending challenging the registry's constitutionality.

The court case that prompted the legislative review questioned the legitimacy of a recently passed provision that required those who committed sex crimes between 1982 and 1992 to register -- even though the registry didn't exist during that time period. Offenders who committed their crimes during that decade complained that by changing the registry requirement after the fact, they were being denied due process.

In response, the Legislature's Criminal Justice Committee went into high gear this session.

Lawmakers held public hearings and crafted a bill that would narrow down the scope of the list. Almost 600 names would be taken off the registry under the proposed legislation, including many of those whose crimes occurred between 1982 and 1992. The bill was passed, with hardly a murmur, by the Legislature.

"It's an attempt to clean up and fix, and make more efficient and fair, our current registry," said Sen Bill Diamond, D-Cumberland, chairman of the Criminal Justice Committee.

But when the legislation went to Gov. John Baldacci, he declined to sign it into law.

"I have no doubt that there are people on the registry who shouldn't be required to register because they no longer pose a risk to public safety," said Baldacci last week. "But until we have a better system to judge who those people are, we should continue with our current law."

We agree. While we believe that it's important to make the punishment fit the crime, and it's clear that there are people on the list for whom registration should not be required, the line between who's on and who's off the list is not one easily drawn.

With his pocket veto of the bill, Baldacci asked lawmakers to reconsider their approach to refining the registration requirements. Criminal Justice Committee members were already scheduled to reconvene this summer to investigate the issues related to sex offender registration; this review fits squarely within their agenda.

With more deliberation, we believe the committee should be able to strike a better balance among justice, public safety and the requirements of the Constitution.