By Roland Riemers
In Texas, public urination also has led to sex offender status. And regardless of legal guidelines, if an underage male has sexual contact with an underage female, the male is likely to be rated as a high-risk sex offender and pedophile.
GRAND FORKS — The Herald ran a story recently about my decision to let a high-risk sex offender into my home as a guest until he could find permanent housing and thus not lose his job (“Man takes in sex offender, address ends up on registry,” Page B1, Feb. 1).
The offender was 15 years old at the time of his offense, and the incident took place at a wild drinking party of mostly adults at the home of a 30-year-old woman. Under the law, juvenile records can only be exchanged within the law enforcement community, so the public never will know the full story.
The offender admits he made a bad mistake. He has completed offender classes and has no new sexual offenses.
In the sexual predator game, age is no defense, and children as young as 9 have been registered as high-risk sex offenders. Some states even have declared that minors may be required to register as high-risk sex offenders even for non-sex crimes.
In Texas, public urination also has led to sex offender status. I have listened to state psychologists testify their view that masturbation is a sexual abnormality worthy of commitment.
Regardless of legal guidelines, if an underage male has sexual contact with an underage female, the male is likely to be rated as a high-risk sex offender and pedophile. Nationally, 26 percent of sex offenders are listed that way because of sexual contact between teenagers.
Nationally as well, there are 500,000 registered sex offenders and 100,000 unregistered sex offenders. Most sex offenders know the victim, so public notification does not make the public safer.
On the other hand, people on the sex offender registry have been murdered just for being on the list. A sex offender also was sentenced to life in prison because he was unable to register an address as required, and he was unable to register an address because no one would rent to him.
- More examples here (Blog) and here (YouTube).
The court review has been a mixed bag. The lists have been upheld only if used as a civil procedure and if they disclose already-public information. In North Dakota’s case, the registry is regulated by criminal law, and confidential information is disclosed. So, I have my doubts as to whether the North Dakota law would pass objective court review.
As for juvenile offenders, there is no valid standard for determining whether they will re-offend, and generally they are less likely to do so than adult offenders.
- True, and if you look at the facts, adults already have a low recidivism rate, from 3.5% and up.
Nationally, all sex offenders are less likely to than other criminals to re-offend. The best treatment to keep them from re-offending is to get them back to the normal restraints of the community and get them into useful work and housing.
Local treatment for sex offenders includes weekly confessions that they are worthless perverts, popping ammonia capsules under their nose at the first thought of sex, and frequent lie detector tests.
Frankly, I view the sex offender lists similarly to the Nazis putting the Star of David on all Jews so that “dangerous population” could be watched and sent off to work camps for rehabilitation.
All humans are capable of becoming saints or bloodthirsty killers. We should encourage goodness and rehabilitation, especially for youthful offenders, as the Christian and moral thing to do.
I would encourage others to support the rehabilitation, if possible, of all criminals.
Riemers is a former candidate for Grand Forks County sheriff.