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A Jackson Township attorney could face up to 10 years in prison after pleading guilty Wednesday to felony child pornography charges.
Aaron Ridenbaugh, 32, appeared before Stark County Common Pleas Judge John G. Haas and entered guilty pleas to three counts of interception of wire, oral or electronic communication, three counts of pandering sexually-oriented materials involving a minor, and one count of illegal use of a minor in nudity-oriented material.
Ridenbaugh also faces four misdemeanor counts of voyeurism in connection with incidents in which he allegedly spied on neighbors at his apartment complex for his own sexual gratification.
Jackson Township Police Chief Harley Neftzer said Ridenbaugh placed small tape recorders on the window sills of neighbors while they were being intimate.
Ridenbaugh was arrested in May when a couple in bed saw a shadow pass over their window. The man gave chase and was able to give a suspect description to police, said Assistant Prosecutor Hope Konovsky.
Thursday, October 18, 2007
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A lawsuit filed Wednesday accuses Custer County Sheriff Mike Burgess of operating a sex-slave ring and threatening to send female jail inmates to prison unless they complied with his sexual demands.
The lawsuit was filed against Burgess on behalf of 12 women who either were jail prisoners or are participants in the county's drug court program.
Burgess had sex with one such woman more than 30 times after telling her that "he got her into the Drug Court program and if she did not provide the required sexual favors, he would get her out,” the lawsuit alleges.
As sheriff and as a member of the drug court, Burgess had the power to carry out that alleged threat, the lawsuit claims.
One woman, Joy Mason, was required at least twice to drive to an Oklahoma City hotel where the sheriff was staying, even though she was required by the drug court not to leave Custer County, the lawsuit states. One such rendezvous occurred in December, the night before Mason appeared before the Legislature as a showcased member of the drug court program, according to the lawsuit.
The allegations have led to a criminal investigation, records obtained Wednesday indicate.
In a July 13 letter to Attorney General Drew Edmondson, Custer County District Attorney Dennis Smith asked to be recused from a potential prosecution of Burgess because of a "strong working relationship” between them. "An OSBI investigation has been ongoing for approximately two months, and I believe there will be decisions to be made on whether a criminal case should be, or is, filed in that matter,” Smith wrote.
Burgess couldn't be reached either at his home or the sheriff's office. A dispatcher said he is out on medical leave.
Tulsa attorney Thomas Seymour, who filed the lawsuit, said of the combined allegations: "It is one of the most disgusting things I have seen in my 40 years of practice.”
- In the spring of 2006, either Burgess or his employees placed one inmate in an isolation cell and gave her only an extremely small gown, which left her breasts exposed. This was in retaliation for her repeated requests for prescription drugs to treat her depression. One jailer fondled the inmate's breasts and paraded male trusties in front of her cell to peer through the door and ogle her.
- Burgess called Mason several times and told her to call him on his cell phone. When the sheriff's wife questioned the calls, Burgess told her only to call him at the office, according to the lawsuit.
- He ordered Mason to drink alcohol, also in violation of her drug court requirements, and as part of the sheriff's alleged scheme of "extreme sexual slavery, including sexual battery, sodomy, rape and blackmail.”
- When he picked up women on a drug court violation, Burgess offered to cause the court to impose far less severe punishment if she would perform a sex act on him.
- In May 2006, Burgess' employees staged wet T-shirt contests among female inmates and offered cigarettes to those who would flash their breasts.
- One female inmate this year was required by a jail employee to bare her breasts to receive food and aspirin.
- One woman resisted a jailer's sexual advances in May 2006. The retaliation included being placed in lockdown and having medication withheld. She also was served food that caused rectal bleeding, causing her and others to subsist only on bread and water.
- One woman became a jail trusty with much more freedom after she agreed to perform sodomy on Burgess. When she finally refused, she lost her trusty status.
State law prohibits a jailer or law enforcement officer from having sex with an inmate or a person in his custody.
This is the second time such allegations have been made against an Oklahoma sheriff in the last three years.
In November 2003, a federal grand jury indicted then-Latimer County Sheriff Melvin Holly on similar allegations. He eventually was sentenced to 25 years in prison. A slew of lawsuits ensued, resulting in judgments against the county.
"It is one of the most disgusting things
I have seen in my 40 years of practice.”
View the article here
Video is at the end of this article. This is just insane. This admits though, that kids ARE having sex at early ages, and plan on it, it's a fact. Also, like giving alcohol to a underage kid, this is contributing to the delinquency of a minor, and you should go to jail. If anyone gave a child a condom, then they are insinuating they are having sex and need protection. This just sends out mixed messages, IMO. They are unable to consent at this young age, so if they need condoms, someone is not obeying the laws. And I'm sure if someone mentioned they gave their young child condoms because they are having sex, they would be thrown in prison very quickly!
School board approves pills and patches for students ages 11 to 13
PORTLAND - Pupils at a city middle school will be able to get birth control pills and patches at their student health center after the local school board approved the proposal Wednesday evening.
The plan, offered by city health officials, makes King Middle School the first middle school in Maine to make a full range of contraception available to students in grades 6 through 8, according to the state Department of Health and Human Services.
There are no national figures on how many middle schools, where most students range in age from 11 to 13, provide such services.
“It’s very rare that middle schools do this,” said Divya Mohan, a spokeswoman for the National Assembly on School-Based Health Care.
The Portland School Committee voted 7-2 for the measure.
Chairman John Coyne voted against it, saying he felt providing the birth control was a parental responsibility. The other no vote came from Ben Meiklejohn, who said the consent form does not clearly define the services being offered.
Opponents cited religious and health objections.
Diane Miller said she felt the plan was against religion and against God. Another opponent, Peter Doyle, said he felt it violated the rights of parents and puts students at risk of cancer because of hormones in the pill.
A supporter, Richard Verrier, said it’s not enough to depend on parents to protect their children because there may be students who can’t discuss things with their parents.
Parental permission required
Condoms have been available since 2000 to King students who have parental permission to be treated at its student health center.
About one-fourth of student health centers that serve at least one grade of adolescents 11 and older dispense some form of contraception, said Mohan, whose Washington-based organization represents more than 1,700 school-based centers nationwide.
At King Middle School, birth control prescriptions will be given after a student undergoes a physical exam by a physician or nurse practitioner, said Lisa Belanger, who oversees Portland’s student health centers.
Students treated at the centers must first get written parental permission, but under state law such treatment is confidential, and students decide for themselves whether to tell their parents about the services they receive.
Five of the 134 students who visited King’s health center during the 2006-07 school year reported having sexual intercourse, said Amanda Rowe, lead nurse in Portland’s school health centers.
A high school in Topeka, Kan., stopped providing free condoms to students Wednesday after district officials learned of the month-old program. The district has a policy against providing contraceptives.
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ST. PETERSBURG -- It's a community that seems serene, with just a wind chime breaking the silence. But look again and you will see many residents wearing ankle monitor systems that alert authorities if they wander too far away.
The Palace Mobile Home Park is a place that welcomes sex offenders. Ninety-five of these 200 residents are convicted sex offenders, including some pedophiles.
The adults-only, nondescript, low-income trailer park near St. Petersburg, Florida has gained a reputation among sex offenders on probation as a good place to live and stay out of trouble.
"Out there ... it's a jungle," said Michael, who did not want his last name used for this report. "In here, it's our own little piece of paradise. We're safe here."
Michael was released from prison in June. He's been a familiar face to law enforcement in Florida and Mississippi for the past 20 years, serving prison time for grand theft, drug possession and sexual battery on a child.
"I pray a lot that my victim has been given the opportunity to grow beyond the horrendous problem that I caused for them," he said.
In many ways, the Palace provides him a second chance at life. New laws across the country have limited where sex offenders and predators can live, banning them from places where children might congregate. This trailer park is far enough away from schools, churches, playgrounds and bus stops, allowing Michael to call it home without running afoul of the law.
"As a sex offender -- when you come out, you're told you can't do this; you can't be around children; you can't go to parks; you can't go to the beach; you can't go to the library," he said.
Nearly 600 sex offenders have lived here in the past couple of years, according to manager Nancy Morais, who said she was sexually assaulted by a family member as a little girl.
Not only does she allow the sex offenders to live here, she also offers therapy to help them become part of society again. "Put him on the right track, and we have a better chance of seeing society be a little bit safer with this person," she said. "Can I guarantee they're all gonna be good? Of course not."
- Not this is someone who has become a survivor and is helping instead of harassing and causing more trouble. God bless here.. Finally someone with some decency!
Some experts agree that it is hope as much as fear that keeps offenders from relapsing.
"You have to offer people hope if you expect them to change," said psychologist Don Sweeney, who works with the residents here. "If society only wants to tear them down and doesn't show them any way back, then all help is lost in their minds, and they are more likely to relapse."
- And thus more victims. So if the public really wants to help children, they will stop the BS harassment, and work on helping people become citizens again, instead of demonizing them, banning them from every nook and cranny. You put stress on people and make it impossible to live with nothing to look forward to, what do you expect they will do? Everybody understands the rage abused victims have, but hate and rage solves nothing.
Morais is allowed by the trailer park's owner to house the offenders. The owner, The R2 Property Company, would not talk to CNN for this story.
Morais said she carefully screens all her potential "guests," even with their unsavory pasts.
"If they come into our program, I would look them close in the eye and will tell them very clearly: 'You want to do good? I will do whatever I can to help you do good,'" she said.
"'You mess up, I'm not gonna cry when you are handcuffed and they are taking you away.'"
Morais charges each offender $400 per month, which includes all utilities. Most have roommates, with up to three or four per trailer. But not everyone who lives here feels safe knowing they are surrounded by convicted sex offenders.
One resident, who asked not to be identified, railed against the trailer park's management for not informing them from the outset about this rehabilitation program.
"They told us nothing. My place is worth nothing now," the resident said, speaking in a whisper.
Another woman said she had no problem living among the offenders, but she said it comes with consequences: She won't allow her grandchildren on the premises.
Others don't seem to mind. Teresa Atkins moved into the Palace a year ago. She is not an offender and didn't know, at the time, that almost half of her neighbors were.
"I'm very safe here. None of these men want to go back to jail. They will do anything to keep from going to jail," she said.
Because of the number of sex offenders, there is a constant police presence in the park.
"We make sure that they know we are going to be an influence in here," said Sgt. Judy Vovan, who supervises the Sexual Predator and Offender Tracking unit for the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office.
"They're gonna see us in here very, very frequently, and we're gonna make sure they are abiding by the registration requirements."
On this particular day, Vovan and deputy Tammy Nixon are going door to door at the Palace. They ensure that all offenders are properly registered. The deputies said more offenders are coming to the park from all over Florida.
"There are people living in this park that have no ties to Pinellas County. We are very much aware of that," said Vovan.
Across the trailer park, Bill Sylvis, the maintenance supervisor, is sanding down a two-by-four. Morais hired him to do repairs at the aging, rundown facility, when he was released from prison in January for sexual assault of a child under 16.
"I was gonna do whatever it took, get my own little cabinet shop, furniture shop going," he said, speaking through a microphone he holds up to his throat. Cancer took away his ability to speak.
But no one would hire him, he said. "We're the bottom of the barrel. They don't want us around. They feel insecure, whatever, unsafe you know."
So far, only one offender who has lived here has re-offended, according to authorities. That man tried to set up a photo shoot with a child on the property.
One of his neighbors, a fellow sexual offender, turned him in.
- Good, this is the way it should be. Keep everyone in check!
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Another woman, another slap on the wrist. A man would be in prison for a very long time for this same crime. I am so sick and tired of the double stands BS! Guess all that womens lib stuff paid off... Video is available at the site.
WEST PALM BEACH - They met on Myspace.com, a popular social networking site.
She was a 22-year-old single mother living in a Singer Island efficiency, working as a lab technician at Scripps Research Institute in Jupiter. He was 14 and living with his parents in northern Palm Beach County, though his profile said he was 18.
Colleen Grear eventually learned the boy's true age, but it didn't stop her from pursuing a sexual relationship. They had encounters in a park, her car, her apartment and a motel room, according to police. Together, the two went skateboarding and to the beach. It all came to a halt when the boy's mother found suggestive e-mails on his computer and confronted him.
On Wednesday, Grear, now 23, pleaded guilty to lewd and lascivious battery, agreeing to spend a year in the county jail followed by two years on house arrest and then 10 years on sex offender probation. She faced a maximum prison term of 15 years.
- But because she is a women, she gets 1 year! Flip this around and the man would be in prison for a lot longer than this. Generalow Wilson in Georgia, received oral sex from a 14 year old girl when he was 17, and he's in prison for 10 years!!!!!! She had sex with a lot younger male.
Palm Beach County Circuit Judge Krista Marx ordered Grear to register as a sex offender.
Being placed on sex offender probation carries special conditions regular probationers don't have, such as being prohibited from living within 1,000-feet of a park, school or playground and barring contact with children under 18. Grear cannot have a job where kids regularly congregate and she cannot own or view pornography. She must submit to an HIV test and undergo a psycho-sexual evaluation and complete any recommended treatment. If she violates her probation, she faces 15 years behind bars.
Grear never set out to have sex with a child, according to her attorney, Jason Weiss.
- What a load of BS! She found out the kid was underage, and still had sex with the kid!
"She was looking for companionship and friendship," Weiss said.
Grear, who has a 3-year-old daughter, has been evaluated by mental health professionals who found that she is not a pedophile or danger to the community and is not likely to re-offend, according to Weiss.
"She relates on an immature level," he said.
Grear accepted a plea deal so that she could stay locally and see her family.
"This has been very difficult for her and her family," Weiss said. "She wants to abide by all her conditions and move on with her life."
- So does the other 630,000 sex offenders.
View the article here | Another Article Here
Just more vigilante BS and proof the public cannot use and handle the registry in an adult civilized way, and more reasons it needs to be taken offline. If I were this person, I would take the sign down, after taking photos of it, and the people who put it up, and sue them for using the registry to harass someone, which most registries state you cannot do this, it's against the law.
You will notice, on the second link above, “What if we didn’t know and I sent one of the girls over to check on the new neighbors in the wintertime?” Now why would you send your child over to check on a new neighbor? Why don't you go check on the neighbor?
Family Says Sex Offender To Move In Next Door
VERSAILLES -- An Indiana family who said a sex offender plans to move in next door is taking matters into its own hands, and their neighbors said their new efforts are raising a few eyebrows.
- So they admit, instead of letting the police handle it, they are admitting to becoming vigilantes and breaking the laws.
The Ratliff family and neighbors received a notice from the city stating that Everett Scholl would be moving in, but the Ratliffs put up a sign just in case anyone didn't get the message, WLWT-TV in Cincinnati reported.
They put up an 8-foot by 6-foot sign at the edge of their property so everyone would know exactly what Scholl looks like and what he's done.
"I don't want him to move in because I'm, like, scared," said Erika Ratliff, 14.
- So, like, move!!!
Erika's mother, Faith Ratliff, 44, confirmed Scholl's incest and rape convictions on the Internet and included them on the sign.
- Where are the police who are suppose to protect and serve everyone? Or are they out molesting and raping people they stop as well?
"It's just kind of scary that he did it to his kids and he might do it again," said Alexis Ratliff, 13.
- Yeah, he might, but until he does, it's only speculation and you need to leave him alone. I hope he sues the crap out of you for this, I really do. People need to start suing. If they don't, more and more of this will occur.
Authorities said the Ratliffs' sign is legal as long as it is accurate. The Ratliffs said they just hope the sign can keep their family and others safe.
- Oh, is it!!!! On Indiana's own registry it says this:
Before entering the web site, please acknowledge the following information:
Indiana sheriffs make no representation, either implied or expressed, that all information placed on this web site is accurate. Much of the information derives from official records but some is gathered from the offenders themselves who are required to list their address when they have been released into the community at large, whenever they move, and as part of an annual verification process. It is your responsibility to make sure the records you access through this site pertain to the person about whom you are seeking information by working with law enforcement or other criminal justice authorities as appropriate.
If you believe that information on this web site is incorrect please contact the Sheriff’s Department in the county in which you live. They will be able to assist you directly or by referring you to another Sheriff’s Department where the offender is registered.
Information contained on this site provides no representation as to any offender’s likelihood of re-offending or the nature of any future crimes that may be committed.
Information in this registry may not be used to harass or threaten offenders or their families. Harassment, stalking, or threats may violate Indiana law.
Faith Ratliff said she wanted to address those who think she took her message too far.
"Put yourself in my situation -- would you want this to happen, would you want someone that did what he did to live 100 feet from your daughter's bedroom window and let him think, 'you know what, they don't know what I did'?" she said.
- So why don't you just go over and talk with him, and let him know you know what he did instead of HARASSING him by placing this HUGE sign up!
She said she wishes Indiana had a better notification system to tell residents when a sex offender purchases property or moves to a new location.
In Ohio, there is a system that sends postcards, and in Kentucky, you can register your ZIP code to be notified by phone when an offender moves nearby.
View the article here
Damn! What can they do? Why don't you say, sorry, you sex offender just can't live. You cannot eat, you cannot have a job, you cannot have a life, period. This is basically what you are all saying. When are you going to bust open the concentration camps created by Haliburton and fire up the ovens? I am so sick of this NAZI BS! When will the mass executions begin? And this person took what I said out of context. He fails to read the rest of my blog to see where I stand, and he says this is a "pervy friendly blog". No, it's a Constitution friendly blog, and is about getting unconstitutional laws repealed. You are so typical, just because I speak out about insane laws, you say this. Typical. Thanks for the advertisement though!! I agree, giving a sex offender a key to the houses is bad news, and I was not saying it was ok, you apparently have not read the rest of my blog to see where I stand on these issues. These laws will not and are not working. Read my comments about these laws here.
Sex offenders with misdemeanor convictions can get real estate licenses.
That’s the loophole that real estate groups, state senators and others say exist in state law and should be closed. Currently, convicted felons cannot get licenses, but when it comes to any type of misdemeanor, including sex-related offenses, state officials have the choice of granting or taking away licenses.
“It’s giving a sex offender . . . a key to your house,” said Sen. Charles Fuschillo R-Merrick), who, as head of the consumer protection committee, introduced a bill to close the misdemeanor loophole for sex offenders and require licenses to be revoked if agents are found guilty of misdemeanor sex crimes.
The Senate passed it and today, real estate trade associations and Parents for Megan’s Law, based in Stony Brook, will hold a news conference today in Fuschillo’s Freeport office to pressure the Assembly to vote on the bill.
Dan Weiller, a spokesman for Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver (D-Manhattan), said the bill agenda has not been set yet for Tuesday’s special legislative session.
Fuschillo said the New York State Association of Realtors alerted him to the loophole, but he does not know if anyone listed on the sex offender registry is currently a real estate agent.
The state Realtors group could not be reached for comment.
Laura Ahearn, executive director of Parents for Megan’s Law, said she did not know either, but in googling for answers, she found cases of Long Island real estate agents arrested on sex offender charges, including one man who befriended three teenage boys after helping their families find housing.
She noted that sex offenders initially charged with felonies often plead their cases down to misdemeanors.
“Agents have a key to the seller’s home and any other agent in that office who is licensed can take that key,” Ahearn said. “The state wouldn’t give a homeowner’s house keys to a convicted burglar. Giving a real estate license to a convicted sex offender is giving them the keys to access and target potential victims.”
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Christian County prosecutor says he will not pursue charges of molestation for now.
A former mayor of Clever charged in early August with molesting three female relatives might not face a judge over the accusations.
That's because Mark A. Keithley, 42, also faces federal weapons charges, for which he is being held without bond in the Greene County Jail.
A federal affidavit alleges the Billings man, a convicted sex offender, owned more than 20 firearms when a Christian County detective was investigating the alleged molestations on Aug. 2.
As a convicted felon, Keithley is prohibited from owning guns. He was found guilty of sexual assault in Greene County in 1988.
The federal affidavit says Keithley's wife tipped authorities off to the guns after he was arrested in the alleged molestations. She said she was scared the man would become violent if he got out of jail, the document said.
Keithley also allegedly told his wife that if charges went away, he would leave and never be seen again. This, in part, prompted U.S. Magistrate Judge James England to order Keithley held without bond Tuesday.
In an order, England wrote there was no way to "assure the defendant's appearance at all scheduled hearings and the safety of other persons in the community."
Three counts of second-degree child molestation filed against Keithley by Christian County Prosecutor Ron Cleek in August will not be pursued for now, Cleek said.
The charges alleged Keithley inappropriately touched and kissed three female relatives in incidents dating back to 2005.
But with Keithley facing possible prison time already, Cleek said there was no need to put the man's alleged victims through court testimony.
"I was concerned for their well-being mentally," he said.
Keithley served as Clever's mayor in 2004 and part of 2005 before resigning, his successor in the position told the News-Leader in August.
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Video is available as well. Here we go again, another organization starting up "for the children!" Yes damn it, children are out future, but by torturing them as well as other human beings is WRONG!!!!!!!! I hope he at least does something worthwhile instead of following the bandwagon, but I'm sure he won't.
RICHLAND - Richland mayor Rob Welch made a surprise announcement Tuesday, he's stepping down.
The move could throw a wrench into election season. Welch was actually up for re-election and he's running un-opposed.
So now instead of the voters deciding, the council will get to choose the replacement.
There was no political posturing or salacious scandal. Richland's mayor just says he wants to spend more time working on his new non-profit.
Adults Protecting the Innocence of Children will push tougher sex offender laws in Washington and across the country.
"Our thought is there can't be enough people working on this problem. not one absolute solution because the system is not working," said Welch.
People around Richand Tuesday had their own opinions about the resignation.
"I really think he's done a good job. he was young when he came going to be a loss."
But with the unopposed seat up for election, this means the council will decide who fills the spot, not you.
"It is a public issue so it would be nice if the public had a choice."
"When the voters go to the ballot box it won't be as expected. But they will have chance to to talk to their councilor on who they want to see it there," said Welch.
The mayor will serve out the rest of his time this year, which ends December. Then the council will vote a new mayor in from the current councilors like they always do. After that, they will take applications for the open council seat.