View the article here
A 24-year-old New York City man remains jailed after he was found allegedly having sex with a 92-year-old woman's corpse inside the morgue of the hospital where he worked.
Anthony Merino, who works as a lab technician at Holy Name Hospital in Teaneck, N.J., was arrested Sunday after police responded to a call from a security guard at the hospital. The guard reported witnessing the lab technician sexually desecrating the woman's dead body, according to police.
"This is a first," Lt. Dean Kazinci, spokesman for the Teaneck, N.J., police, told ABC News. "When you think you've heard and seen it all, something like this happens."
Kazinci said the security guards at the hospital told police that they caught Merino in the act of necrophilia. They transported Merino to the police station, he said, and charged him after conducting a police interview.
A spokesman for Holy Name Hospital released a statement to ABC News calling the allegations a "heinous crime."
"We are horrified and saddened for the family of the patient and are completely empathic and sympathetic to them," the statement reads.
Merino had only been working at the hospital for 14 days, according to the statement, and had passed a criminal background check before he was offered the job. The hospital also notified the dead woman's next of kin after contacting authorities.
Merino was arraigned Monday on a charge of desecrating human remains, a second degree crime in New Jersey. A judge set bail at $400,000 with conditions that included Merino surrendering his passport and submitting to a psychological evaluation. He faces a maximum of 10 years in prison, if convicted.
In addition to working part time at Holy Name Hospital, Merino also had a part-time job as a histology technician at Overlook Hospital in Summit, N.J.
Janina Scheytt Hecht, a spokeswoman for Overlook Hospital, confirmed that Merino worked for the hospital from Sept. 10, 2007, until Monday. "He has been terminated," Hecht said, adding that Merino was subject to a background check there before he was hired. She also said no one had filed a complaint against him during his short tenure on the staff.
Necrophilia is a psychological condition that falls under the umbrella category of paraphilia, according to Michael Fogel, the chair of the forensic psychology department at the Chicago School of Professional Psychology. Paraphilia involves fantasies and sexual urges in which people are aroused by nonhuman objects or pain or humiliation of oneself or a sexual partner.
"It's an extraordinarily rare condition, but it's also a very real condition," said Fogel, who previously served as the director of the Sex Offender Evaluation Unit for the Illinois Department of Corrections. In more than 1,500 evaluations he performed in that role, he said, not one involved the condition of necrophilia.
Fogel said the psychological exam will be critical to understanding what type of risk Merino may pose. He also cautioned against simply calling the suspect, if he is, in fact, convicted of the crime, "nuts."
"In these type of cases, it's a sexual attraction that the individual has," he said. "That's what they're aroused to, it's what they have sexual fantasies about."
Wednesday, October 31, 2007
View the article here
My5th Blog | My5th Web Site | Bill of Rights
Our inspiration to start My5th™ is Genarlow Wilson.
At 17, a senior in high school, star athlete with a 3.2 gpa engaged in a consensual sex act with a 15 year old girl who was his classmate and now he sits in prison for 10 years and has to register as a sexual predator for the rest of his life.
With this website, blog and workshops, My5th™ wants to prevent you from paying the price for not knowing the law!!!! Use the law, don't let it use you!!!
Check out our inaugural My5th™ song by D4L and Borne Immaculate!!!!
View the article here
An ex-Horsham police officer is accused of soliciting a prostitute under pretense of an investigation, then trying to cover it up.
Thomas Crow, 35, of Horsham, was arraigned by video Tuesday and released on bail. Crow resigned from the Horsham Police Department on Aug. 5, six days after the allegations were brought to light, according to a statement released Tuesday by the department.
According to court documents, investigators said Crow was on duty July 30 when he arranged to meet with a prostitute at a Horsham hotel. During phone arrangements with a man she knew only as Tom, the escort was told to look for a room in the hotel that turned out not to exist. When she left the hotel, Crow approached her in uniform and asked if she had any weapons or identification. Crow told her he was investigating another escort who had stolen some money.
During their exchange, Crow allegedly asked, “What are you going to do for me?” and the escort named a sex act, though she told investigators she was afraid she'd be arrested for answering the question. They drove in a marked police car to a nearby secluded area and engaged in sexual activity, records said.
Crow then told the escort, “Now you have a friend that's a police officer so you don't have to be afraid,” the papers said.
The Horsham Police Department learned about the incident later that day and asked the Montgomery County District Attorney's Office to help investigate. Crow told investigators he had only contacted the escort to look into a prostitute who stole money from his brother-in-law and denied having sex with her. The brother-in-law told investigators Crow had asked him to corroborate his story about a prostitute stealing money from him, court documents said.
After investigators took the statement from the brother-in-law, Crow admitted he paid the escort $60 for a sex act and telling her to say he'd been investigating a theft by another prostitute if anyone asked, according to the report.
Crow is also accused of hiding evidence of a prior run-in with the escort service. According to court documents, Crow contacted the service and arranged to meet an escort at a Horsham hotel. A cab driver interviewed during the investigation said shortly after midnight July 29, he drove three women to a Horsham hotel, and one of them was supposed to meet someone there who was not answering his phone. That woman has the same name as the escort Crow later claimed stole money from his brother-in-law. It's also the same name as the escort he asked for specifically when he called the service July 30, though it sent another woman.
The cab driver waited with the women at the hotel for a few minutes before they left. Immediately after the cab started to leave, a Horsham officer pulled them over. The officer took each woman from the taxi separately and wrote down their names and home telephone numbers, the driver said.
Investigators determined that the phone number of the person one of the women was there to meet was Crow's cell phone number. Crow pointed out to investigators where he'd recorded driver's license numbers and phone numbers for the women in the cab, but when the patrol notebook was examined, pages were missing, the court documents said.
Command staff at the Horsham Police Department told investigators that Crow was not authorized to investigate prostitution in Horsham.
Crow is charged with tampering with or fabricating physical evidence, obstructing administration of law, hindering apprehensionor prosecution, official oppression and patronizing prostitutes. Crow's bail restrictions bar him from coming in contact with witnesses in the investigation, said Hatboro District Judge Paul Leo. Crow waived his right to a preliminary hearing and his next court date is scheduled for Jan. 9.
View the article here
MONTICELLO -- Agents with the Georgia Bureau of Investigation have arrested Monticello attorney Roy Kelly on child porn charges.
Agents with the GBI's Milledgeville office arrested the 59-year-old attorney Tuesday on charges of sexual exploitation of children and violation of the Georgia Computer Pornography and Child Exploitation Act.
The agents executed search warrants at his law office and his home.
Agents received a tip from federal law enforcement partners that stemmed from an investigation into a commercial child pornography Web site.
Kelly was taken to the Jasper County Jail. Authorities say additional charges are possible as the investigation continues.
View the article here
Scores of new Oklahoma laws go into effect Thursday, including some of the "feel good” variety — those that give lawmakers something to trumpet to their constituents, but leave a little to be desired in terms of practicality.
An example is House Bill 1760, which creates a three-tiered system for rating sex offenders. The law was changed in order to comply with a federal statute, a piece of which mandates that states that don't get on board can lose federal grant money. The type and severity of the crime, and the number of convictions a person has, will determine his or her rating.
The Tulsa World reported that nearly 80 percent of sex offenders will fall into the highest risk category, which requires them to register as a sex offender for life. Sgt. Gary Stansill, a veteran sex crimes officer in Tulsa, said the new law is too broad. "The least number of people should be in the worst tier, but the most number of people are going to be in the worst tier under the new law,” Stansill said. An official with the Oklahoma Sex Offender Management Team told the newspaper he believes the public likely would be in favor of lawmakers changing the laws "to make more sense and to protect children, because the laws as they are written are not protecting children.” But they're mighty popular at the Capitol — HB 1760 passed with nary a no vote.
Another big winner last session was House Bill 1804, an immigration reform measure that has generated tremendous debate in the months leading up to its enactment. Among other things, the Oklahoma Taxpayer and Citizens Protection Act makes it a felony to transport, conceal and harbor or house illegal immigrants, with violators subject to no less than a year behind bars or a $1,000 fine.
The bill's author proudly proclaims it the toughest immigration law in the land. Those charged with enforcing the law, however, have spoken of the potential difficulty in doing just that. At least one lawsuit has been filed. And last week, Catholic priests in the Oklahoma City archdiocese signed a pledge opposing the law, which they called "overly punitive” and "fiercely anti immigrant.”
"We stand together, in solidarity, in defiance of this law because of our allegiance to a higher law; the law of humanity,” the pledge said.
There are some new laws that have the potential to do some good. Among them: a law that allows for creation of a Web site to track the way the state spends your money, one that requires kids to wear helmets while riding all-terrain vehicles on public land, and one that creates an agri-tourism program in Oklahoma.
Of course no legislative session would be complete without at least some silliness, and House Bill 1669 has that covered. It makes watermelon the official state vegetable.
Pentagon Reports Increase in Sex Assaults as VA Opens New Facility for Women
The Department of Veterans Affairs announced it will open a facility this December to provide counseling exclusively to female veterans who have been the victims of sexual abuse or assault.
The treatment center, which will house 10 patients in Bernards Township, N.J., opens amid increased reports of rape and harassment by women serving in the military, and increased attention to the problem of military sexual trauma, or MST, by the VA.
According to the VA, there are currently 15 federally funded programs nationwide that treat both men and women for psychological ailments related to MST, which could include depression, withdrawal and thoughts of suicide.
The New Jersey facility, as first reported by the Star Ledger, will be the first and only residential program that treats women. Currently, six of the 15 national programs counsel women exclusively, but only on an outpatient basis.
"The VA wanted to make it known that it has specific facilities for women only, so if there are women who want to address this problem, and don't want to be near men, they have a place to go," said Susan McCutcheon, the VA's national director for military sexual trauma programs.
Since 2002, the VA has screened all discharged military personnel for MST, asking them if they have been the recipients of uninvited sexual attention, or the victims of assault. In total, more men than women — 63,467 men versus 62,448 women — have reported sexual trauma, but that figure represents just 1 percent of all men surveyed, compared to 29 percent of women, according to the VA.
By those figures, nearly one in three women in the military is at risk for sexual assault, twice as many as in the general population, according to Pentagon statistics.
"Sexual assault is the nation's most underreported violent crime. Some national studies indicate that one in six women, and one in 33 men will experience a rape or attempted rape in their lifetime," said Cynthia Smith, a Defense Department spokesperson.
While the VA says it has seen little change in the number of veterans reporting MST since 2002, the Pentagon has recorded a marked increase in the number of reported instances of harassment and assault by active duty personnel in the past two years.
According to the Defense Department's 2006 sexual assault report, the number of reported assaults skyrocketed 73 percent from 2004 — when 1,700 incidents were filed — to 2006, when 2,947 incidents were reported.
The military attributes the increase in incidents to an increase in reporting. According to the Pentagon report, "Programs to promote awareness, coupled with extensive training on policies and procedures, are creating a climate of confidence across the services, as evidenced by increased reporting."
According to Ira Katz, a VA psychiatrist, "Looking at MST often overlaps with treatments and therapies for [post-traumatic stress disorder]."
Katz said that the VA's program differs from state-run programs because the federal government employs "more experienced clinicians."
Groups that advocate for servicewomen who have been assaulted — as well as some of the veterans themselves — however, say the VA has been slow to taking MST seriously.
Valerie Cortazzo, a Navy vet who served from 1981 to 1987, said she was assaulted by three different individuals during her service, and was routinely extorted for sex by a superior for three years.
Though she left the Navy 20 years ago, Cortazzo, now 44, said she still has flashbacks of those attacks, and has found the VA's programs wanting in her hometown of Pittsburgh, Pa.
"Three months ago, I started having flashbacks and went to the VA. I asked them for group therapy, but they don't have anything for women that have gone through this. They say there isn't a need," she said.
Cortazzo added that when she would go to the VA for therapy, she was often treated by inexperienced psychology interns, and not trained psychiatrists. She said she thinks often about the master chief who extorted sex from her for years, and how it has "impacted the relationship with my husbands, and my self-esteem."
Twenty years later, Cortazzo still regrets not reporting the incidents.
"There is a lot of second guessing. Why didn't I report it? I felt weak because I didn't do anything about it. For a long time, I thought I was a bad person," she said.
Anita Sanchez, director of communications for the Miles Foundation, an organization that advocates for sexually assaulted female veterans, said the VA needs more experienced personnel and inpatient facilities like the one planned for New Jersey.
She said a number of states have implemented their own programs to treat women who have been traumatized, because, despite congressional directive, the VA and Defense Department have been slow to act.
"We exist because the federal government hasn't done enough," Sanchez said. "The Senate Armed Services has recognized there are not enough services available, and the VA has been authorized since the early 1990s to create sexual trauma counseling centers, but the Defense Department is only now calling for proposals."
View the article here
BEDFORD - Twenty men have been arrested in a sex sting at a Westchester County highway rest stop, including a Catholic priest, a registered sex offender and a local Rotary Club president.
The state police says the month long sting was prompted by a complaint from a man who stopped at a rest area off Interstate 684 with his 10-year-old son. Police say men cruise the area looking for sex.
Most of the men have been charged with either loitering or trespass violations or both. One was charged with forcible touching, a misdemeanor. Four were charged with exposing themselves and two with public lewdness.
View the article here
"A Texas, USA prison prepares for the execution of another young black man. Four leather belts will strap him to a white bed as he waits for the lethal injection. Visitors can stand in an adjacent room and watch through a barred window. Glenn McGinniss is on death row and feels like a dead man walking. He describes how at seventeen he stole money for his mother who was in prison with a crack habit. When a young woman started screaming he panicked and shot her. An all white jury condemned him to death by execution. His grandmother shows us photos of him a chubby child laughing at the camera. Prisons crowded with young black men is a national phenomena. Blacks make up 41% of the prison population but only 12% of the American population. White parents of the victims recommend watching the executions. One father says, "they have to be removed from society like a rabid dog." Lynching of blacks at the courthouse is no longer permitted, but judicial prejudice still runs deep."
View the article here
"In the last five years, more juvenile offenders were killed in Texas than in the rest of the world combined. America continues to defend its right to execute children.
"They think we're beasts. And we deserve nothing else other than our execution," despairs Oswaldo. He's been on death row since he was 17, after accidentally killing a man during an armed robbery. "In 12 years, I haven't had a hug or a kiss." In Louisiana, Lawrence Jacob Jr is also fighting for his life. Like Oswaldo, he was only 17 when he was sentenced to death. "I'm not asking you to release me. I'm only asking you for the chance to rehabilitate," he reasons. Cerebral research proves that the brains of 17 year olds have not developed as much as adults. "Youths at that age are much too impulsive and don't have the control," explains one expert. But in America, that's no bar to their execution."
View the article here
WILMINGTON -- A 57-year-old woman, who claims she was raped by a Laurel police officer, filed a civil lawsuit Tuesday in Superior Court.
The lawsuit faults the town as irresponsible by allowing the now former police chief to run unchecked with his alleged policy of hiring unqualified officers and ignoring background-check requirements.
These policies allowed the Town of Laurel to hire Kevin D. Hovatter on its police force, even after he had been driven from the Wicomico County Sheriff's Office because of multiple complaints lodged against him by another woman, according to the lawsuit.
Hovatter, 29, had been decertified as a police officer by Maryland and placed on its rehiring "black list," according to the lawsuit.
The suit also claims the victim, Gail Weal of Delmar, was discriminated against because the white officer allegedly made racially stereotypical statements toward her. Weal is black.
"So now a jury and the courts will have to settle this dispute and compensate this victim for a black woman's worst nightmare -- being stopped by a renegade, racist, white cop in the middle of the night, being violently raped and wondering whether you will be killed," Weal's attorney, Thomas S. Neuberger, said during a Tuesday news conference at his firm's offices in Wilmington.
Neuberger said, "If Gail had been a white woman who was brutally raped by a town cop, we all know we would not have to be here suing the Sussex County town, which blew off her accusations against a convicted felon wearing their uniform."
Laurel Mayor John Shwed deferred comment to the town's attorney, James F. Waehler, who could not be reached for comment.
The incident occurred March 25, 2006, when Hovatter -- a corporal in the Laurel Police Department -- pulled his squad car up to Weal, who was outside a Laurel bar.
After learning she was waiting for her husband, the lawsuit claims Hovatter made a racial comment, then asked Weal if she and her husband would have sex when they got home. He also asked if she was available for him, according to the lawsuit.
After Weal's husband picked her up, Hovatter followed them to Delmar on Route 13 and pulled them over.
Hovatter told the victim's husband he had business with Weal. Thinking this was some sort of misunderstanding or mistaken identity, Weal got out of their vehicle, told her husband to go home and that she would call him from the police station.
Hovatter drove off with the victim, stopped on a dark road and ordered the woman to get out. That is when the assault took place.
Afterward, Hovatter drove the woman home and told her to tell her husband that there had been a case of mistaken identity.
The woman was treated at Nanticoke Memorial Hospital in Seaford, where DNA evidence was collected.
Hovatter, who resigned from the department, was charged with two counts of rape, coercion, official misconduct and unlawful sexual contact. He pleaded guilty to unlawful sexual contact and in June was sentenced to one year in prison followed by two years probation.
Hovatter worked for the Laurel Police Department for nearly seven years. He was hired shortly after he was suspended by the Wicomico County Sheriff's Office after a Beebe School of Nursing student twice reported Hovatter had been stalking her.
Hovatter quit the Sheriff's Office amid the agency's internal investigation into the incident to avoid any findings of misconduct, according to the lawsuit. As a result, the Maryland Police Training Commission placed Hovatter on its "black list," decertifying him as a police officer in Maryland and making him ineligible to be hired in the state.
Weal, who is seeking compensatory and punitive damages from Hovatter and the Town of Laurel, was forced to sue, Neuberger said, after she was ignored by the Laurel Town Council when she sought a settlement.
View the article here
LINDEN — Criminal trial procedures began Tuesday for Terrence Lavell Smith, a former Demopolis police officer who was indicted on three counts of rape in the second degree in February.
The victim, a 14-year-old female who was 13-years-old at the time of the alleged incidents, testified to having sexual intercourse with Smith on at least three separate occasions — two of which she said occurred in Smith’s personal truck, and one of which occurred in an abandoned cell in the former Demopolis jail building next to the municipal court.
She also testified, in response to the District Attorney Greg Griggers’s questioning, that she was never forced to do anything or was never treated in a violent manner.
“So you willingly and knowingly participated in these acts on a voluntary basis?” Griggers asked during the proceedings.
The victim confirmed her involvement with Smith, who worked the crosswalk at Demopolis Middle School as part of his duties with the department, was on a voluntary and consensual basis.
During the time frame of September to December of 2006 when these incidents allegedly took place, phone records show there were more than 260 calls made between Smith and the victim.
Reportedly, Smith and the victim communicated by phone and met up at the alley between the old jail and the municipal court, which were in walking distance of her home, to have sex.
Griggers apologized for his bluntness with the victim, but, because of the seriousness of the allegations, asked the victim if she and Smith had sexual intercourse in which Smith penetrated her and ejaculated. The victim affirmed Griggers’ questions and said on each occasion they did not use a condom because Smith told her he had a surgery that prevented him having children.
The case came to public view when a friend of the victim’s told school authorities, particularly Demopolis Middle School Principal Clarence Jackson, about the victim’s relationship with the officer.
Jackson testified that after speaking with both the victim and her friend in separate, taped interviews, he called Public Safety Director Jeff Manual to determine what further actions should be taken.
The investigation was turned over to the Marengo County Sheriff’s Department once it was determined the case involved a Demopolis police officer. According to Chief Deputy Tommy Reese, who was the lead investigator in the case, the sheriff’s department was given a report from the Department of Human Resources and requested to handle the case.
Smith was relieved of his duties at the department after his arrest on Dec. 19.
For the remainder of the trial, which continues today, the jury is expected to hear testimony regarding forensic and DNA evidence taken from the seat of Smith’s vehicle.
In Alabama, rape II is defined as sexual interaction with a minor between the ages of 13 and 16 by someone over the age of 16 with at least two years between the parties. The class B felony can carry a sentence of two to 20 years of prison time for each count.
View the article here
Constitutionality under review
The state Supreme Court has agreed to decide the constitutionality of a state law mandating that sex offenders cannot live within 1,000 yards of a school or playground after a Kenton County judge declared it unconstitutional.
A key issue in the high court's review of the case will be whether the residency restriction law is punitive or merely part of the regulation of sex offenders. The difference is important because the former makes it an unconstitutional ex post facto law, while the latter is allowed.
An ex post facto law is one passed to punish a person after the commission of an act. In the residency requirement laws, it applies to all sex offenders, even those who committed their crimes and served out their punishments years ago.
It's an issue states across the country are grappling with after they passed laws in the past decade or so to require sex offenders to register with police and then limited where they can live. In Miami, for instance, Florida's laws are so restrictive that the only legal place for a sex offender to live is under the bridge across the Biscayne Bay.
In Ohio, the state Supreme Court is reviewing the case of Gerry Porter, who bought a house in Cheviot in 1991. He was convicted of sex crimes in 1995 and 1999, and is now being forced to move because the house is within 1,000 feet of a school - its back yard is 983 feet from St. Jude Elementary School.
A Hamilton County Common Pleas Court ruled against Porter, saying the move does not violate any of his substantial right. The 1st District Court of Appeals upheld that ruling. However, in another case, the 2nd District Court of Appeals found the residency restriction was unconstitutional.
A similar situation occurred in Kenton County, where District Judge Ann Ruttle upheld the law in a brief, two-page decision, while District Judge Martin Sheehan wrote a 36-page decision throwing out the cases against 11 sex offenders.
All of them were convicted of the sex crimes before the residency requirement laws were changed in 2006. After the new law took force they were charged with violating it because they lived too close to a school or park.
"This court concludes that Kentucky's sex offender residency restrictions constitute a form of banishment, a punishment that is historically and traditionally punitive," Sheehan wrote.
"This court concludes that Kentucky's sex offender residency restrictions promote retribution, a traditional aim of punishment.... This court finds that the residency restrictions imposed by Kentucky law do not bear a rational connection to the interests they are intended to serve and are excessive in relation to any non-punitive purpose which can be inferred."
Kentucky first passed its version of Megan's law in 1998, calling on all sex offenders to register their addresses, and allowing for public notification. Failing to register is a felony punishable by up to five years in prison.
The state Supreme Court upheld that law four years later, saying it was Constitutional, non-punitive, and merely compiled information already in the public domain.
Megan's laws are named after Megan Kanka, a 7-year-old New Jersey girl who in 1994 was abducted, raped and murdered by a neighbor who had committed prior sexual offenses against children. After her death, Megan's parents pushed New Jersey to pass a law requiring the notification of neighbors when a convicted sexual offender moves into an area.
Other states quickly followed suit. The federal government passed a law setting up a nationwide notification network, and said every state must join or face the loss of federal funds.
States have gone beyond that, though, requiring limits on where sex offenders can live. In 2006, Kentucky passed a law saying they could not live within 1,000 feet of a school, playground, or child-care center.
Sheehan's decision impacts only on the specific cases he ruled on. Kenton County prosecutors are technically not appealing the decision; instead they are asking the high court to certify the law. Even if it upholds the law, the Supreme Court cannot bring back the cases against the 11 men.
However, Assistant County Attorney Chris Nordloh said the state can again cite them with violating the law if the Supreme Court upholds it.
Nordloh said it's obvious the law is an extension of the registration process, not a new punishment. Both the legislators' passing the law, and Gov. Ernie Fletcher's signing statement, made that point, he said.
"Here, the commonwealth maintains that residency restrictions are not punitive, but rather only an extension of an existing regulatory scheme regarding sexual offenders," he wrote in papers field with the Supreme Court. "Regulatory restrictions imposing limitations and boundaries on sex offenders have a primary purpose of protecting the public, especially children."
Sheehan's order said, though, that much of that protection is illusory. The laws are popular with the public because their main impact is against sex offenders, "the political pariahs of our day," he said.
A problem with residency requirements is that it merely limits where a sex offender can live, Sheehan said, not what he can do around children.
"Residency restrictions do no restrict the sex offender from sitting on a bench in or near the very playground which serves to restrict his residency," Sheehan said.
"That same offender can operate his car and 'cruise' the area around the very daycare which serves to restrict his residency. He can return to the family home from which he was forced to move, on a daily basis if he so chooses, provided he does not sleep there, and peer out the window in deviant lust at the toddlers frolicking on the playground."
View the article here
In a shocking announcement last night, the creators of America’s number one selling adult entertainment series, Girls Gone Wild, declared the popular Collegetown bar Dino’s as “The Wildest Bar in America.”
After a short stop in Ithaca last Wednesday, the filmmakers, on a quest to find the raunchiest bar in the country, opened up shop at Dino’s ushering in record numbers of patrons for a night that will live in infamy as the University’s craziest party.
“I’ve never seen so many out of control kids,” said Adam Moon, a visiting student from the University of Georgia, a school known for its wild party atmosphere. “I always thought Ivy Leaguers were probably a bunch of bookworm pansies that would rather play Halo than get drunk at a bar full of topless girls, but they sure proved me wrong.”
With over 400 students packed into the tiny bar, Dino’s became an instant sleaze fest when 50 year old cameraman and registered sex offender Rick Stanley ’79 called action on the set. There was no stopping the undeniably eager coeds.
“Wow! I just. Wow! This is the ideal place to shoot this movie. There are so many girls I can’t even catch all the action… they’ll do just about anything for a T-shirt,” said Stanley.
Over the course of two hours, the bar completely sold out of alcohol. When the announcement was made by bartender James Morgan, riots ensued and the Ithaca Police Department was called to bring order to the chaos.
Morgan, who has worked at bars across the country at top party schools including Arizona State University and West Virginia University, said, “Cornell has got to be by far the best party school I’ve ever been to. These kids sure know how to have a good time.
View the article here
A Navarre High School student is facing criminal charges after he streaked across the football field naked in front of about 1,900 classmates during the homecoming game pep rally, according to the office report from the Santa Rosa County Sheriff's Office.
The 18-year-old student was handed over to the school’s resource officer and was disciplined according to the school’s code of conduct and school board policy, said Assistant Principal Mike Brandon.
“It was an unfortunate situation,” Brandon said.
A warrant for the student’s arrest on charges of indecent exposure and disturbing the peace is under review at the State Attorney’s office, said Scott Haines, public information officer with the Santa Rosa County Sheriff’s Office.
The two potential charges are misdemeanors and the teenager will not be registered as a sex offender for the incident, Haines said.
View the article here
An ordinance to make convicted sex offenders a little more “responsible for their actions” was suggested to commissioners on Monday.
Wabash County Sheriff Leroy Striker asked the Wabash County Commissioners to consider adding a $5 fee each time a convicted sex offender moves to a new address.
Striker said there is a one-time fee of $50 to the offender, but that the amount was barely enough to pay the expense of being added into the sex offender registry. He said each time the offender moves to a new address, his or her profile in the registry must also be updated so the public can be aware of the offender's current residence.
“Among a population of about 34,000 in Wabash County, there are 85 registered sex offenders,” Striker told commissioners. “That's a lot.”
Some are under a 10-year registry mandate and others have a lifetime notification process.
By visiting the Wabash County Sheriff's Department Web site, www.wcsd.us, the public can access the Indiana Sex and Violent Offender Registry, Striker said.
“You can see where they live (and work). The new ordinance would help make the perpetrator responsible for their actions without being a burden to law-abiding citizens,” he added.
He said the program was in place in Morgan County, where the local ordinance is helping the county with the costs. Commissioner attorney Steve Downs will take a look into creating the new ordinance.
In other county business, Chief Probation Officer Dallas Duggan requested additional help for his department.
Duggan explained that with Wabash County Drug Court still growing, so has additional work for the probation department.
“We now have more than one person can handle,” he told commissioners. “I can't continue paying for 60 hours a week.”
Duggan requested some part-time help for primarily field work.
Commissioners agreed and cleared the request on to Wabash County Council.
View the article here
Attorneys say they don't have the resources, all evidence to prepare
BRUNSWICK - David Edenfield's attorneys contend they don't have the resources nor access to all evidence necessary to properly prepare his defense in the sexual abuse slaying of 6-year-old Christopher Michael Barrios Jr.
James Yancey Jr. and John Beall IV also want all court proceedings in David Edenfield's murder trial put on hold until the U.S. Supreme Court rules on the constitutionality of lethal injection as a means of execution.
However, Superior Court Judge Stephen Scarlett ruled that a pre-trial hearing Monday about potential evidence in the case will proceed.
Yancey and Beall will be allowed during the hearing to ask that individual motions be taken up at a later date, Scarlett said in a written order denying the motion for continuance.
"Obviously, we would have liked for the continuance to have been granted," Yancey said. "We will address whatever motions the judge wants us to, and address them the best we are able."
Meanwhile, the judge has set a January trial date for a Brunswick man charged with helping dispose of Christopher's body after he was killed March 8.
Jury selection in the trial of Donald Dale, 34, will begin Jan. 3, followed by testimony on Jan. 8 at the Glynn County Courthouse, Scarlett ruled Tuesday.
Dale has pleaded not guilty to charges of concealing a death and tampering with evidence. He is not charged with harming Christopher. Dale remains jailed for his own protection at the Glynn County Detention Center.
"We'll be ready for trial if the case is not resolved before then," said Dale's attorney, John Wetzler.
No plea bargain has been offered to Dale by prosecutors in the case, Wetzler said.
Dale has a diminished mental capacity, which left him vulnerable to being duped and manipulated by the Edenfield family, who were Dale's friends, Wetzler previously said.
District Attorney Stephen Kelley didn't respond to a Times-Union telephone message left with his staff Tuesday.
David Edenfield, his wife, Peggy C. Edenfield, and their son, George D. Edenfield, all face the death penalty if convicted of malice murder in the death of the Glynn County kindergarten student. All three have pleaded not guilty and remain jailed without bail. They will be tried separately.
How soon those trials occur hasn't been determined.
Attorneys for George Edenfield, 31, contend he is mentally incompetent and cannot stand trial for the killing.
He cannot be tried until a special civil trial is held to determine if he is capable of understanding the court proceedings and helping with his own defense.
Scarlett canceled a pre-trial hearing for George Edenfield that was to have been held Monday.
In a written motion for a continuance, Yancey said he and Beall have not received all the copies of crime laboratory reports, police interviews with the Edenfields and witnesses and other potential evidence they are entitled to under state law.
They are seeking a change of venue for David Edenfield's trial. Yancey and Beall also are attacking the legality of the police search of the Edenfield's home and want the judge to throw out potential evidence implicating David Edenfield in the abduction, sexual abuse and killing of Christopher,
The lack of "substantive discovery" evidence has hampered the defense's ability to prepare for David Edenfield's hearing, the motion says. Because they don't have an investigator, and lack the resources to pay experts for the hearing, they will not be adequately prepared, Yancey wrote.
In addition, they have not had time to review the materials that they have received. Their preparation also has been hampered because Yancey was gone for a week recently because of a death in the family, he wrote.
David Edenfield was convicted of incest against his daughter in 1994 but isn't a registered sex offender because his conviction occurred two years before the Georgia law took effect.
George Edenfield is a registered sex offender convicted of two counts of child molestation in 1997.
The father and son are charged with taking turns sexually abusing Christopher while Peggy Edenfield, 57, watched and masturbated. All three are charged with killing the child.
Christopher was asphyxiated and his body was found inside a plastic trash bag in woods about two miles from the Canal Mobile Home Park where he and his extended family were neighbors of the Edenfields.
View the article here
BOISE - A convicted rapist who escaped from police custody last night committed suicide in emergency room restroom at St. Alphonsus this morning.
The Ada County coroner's report indicates William Dean Blakeslee, 25, of Boise, died from a gunshot wound to the head.
Blakeslee pleaded guilty to raping a woman he knew last November. He was found guilty and given a 10-year sentence.
A judge later ordered him to attend off-site sex offender treatment. Blakeslee was on the furlough Monday night for treatment when he did not return to the Ada County Jail.
A warrant of $1 million had been issued for Blakeslee’s arrest.
The entrance to St. Alphonsus was temporarily closed this morning, as police responded to reports of a gunshot being fired.
The hospital spokesman says a man killed himself in the bathroom of the emergency department lobby.
No one else was in the bathroom at the time. A security guard found the man and called 911.
Boise police quickly determined no crime was committed and deemed this a suicide.
View the article here
Across the country, the big question for children at Halloween is that of picking the right costume: ghost, Spider-Man, witch, princess or pirate?
For many parents and police, the question is more difficult: how to protect children from sex offenders.
This concern is a relatively recent phenomenon. Ten years ago the old tainted candy scare (a discredited but resilient myth) was the primary perceived "stranger danger" threat on Halloween.
This year, in New Jersey, thousands of convicted sex offenders will be on a curfew, told to stay in their homes after 7 p.m. Halloween night and not to answer the door if trick-or-treaters come by. Other states have given offenders signs reading, "No Candy at this Residence" to be placed on their front doors, and told not to put up any decorations. Some offenders have been required to report to jail overnight.
While children's safety is important, the concern far outweighs the real danger. There is no reason to think that sex offenders pose any more of a threat to children on Halloween than at any other time. In fact, there has not been a single case of any child being molested by a convicted sex offender while trick-or-treating.
These measures are popular and well-intentioned—but ultimately ineffective—publicity stunts offered by police and politicians to placate parents. They provide a false sense of security, since there is no evidence that the policies actually make children any safer. Any opportunistic sexual predators who would attack children will simply wait until the next day.
Ironically, a group of children dressed in costume at a sex offender's doorway are probably safer than at many other places they could be, including their own homes. This is because, contrary to popular belief, most released sex offenders do not re-offend, and because most attacks on children occur in their own home by someone they know.
Furthermore, the simple logistics of trick-or-treating make an assault very unlikely. A sex offender would have great difficultly molesting a child who is in costume, outside his or her front door, and in front of other people and witnesses.
Of course, the knowledge that such an attack has never happened and is very unlikely to ever occur won't calm the hysterical concern. Those in charge of Halloween sex offender policies admit that the danger is slight, but defend the measures as being proactive. It's always better to prevent a crime from occurring than to deal with its aftermath, but proactive policies need to be logical and proportional to the real likelihood of the threat.
Police are busy making sure they know where sex offenders are on Oct. 31, but each week across America, over a dozen children are drowned, burned, or beaten to death by a parent or caregiver. If police, parents and politicians are truly concerned about children's safety, the resources spent enforcing curfews and handing out "No Candy Here" signs would do far more good in efforts to prevent parental abuse.
The real threat to children on Halloween isn't sex offenders; it’s being hit by a car crossing a dark street or wearing a flammable costume. Most kids are very safe at Halloween, and have little to fear from strangers. Scaring kids with phantom fears isn't nice, nor helpful. Happy Halloween.
View the article here
I have been let down by so many of my idols throughout my life. I first learned celebrities weren’t perfect when Boy George, who embarrassingly became my first pop idol, was arrested for heroin use. I was even more let down when Michael Jackson, the self-proclaimed King of Pop, allegedly turned into the King of Poop, but paid his way out of it. By the time Whitney Houston became a crack addict, I pretty much grew immune to the fallen idol syndrome. I also believed you, one of my idols since the mid-eighties, would never let me down. Within the past couple of years, you’ve proven me wrong.
I know you want me to refer to you as God, since everything you do these days seems done for the sole purpose of promoting yourself as the Messiah, but I think you need to slow down. Earlier this year, you opened The Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls in Africa. I admit it was a good thing, but if your motives for opening this school were truly altruistic, then how come I had to see your face on every single magazine and television special advertising it? A true philanthropist doesn’t need to constantly brag about the good deeds he or she is doing.
You see, Oprah, if you are going to make such a big deal about your school, you need to pay attention to it after the ratings sweeps. Hearing your tearful apology when finding out that your school is nothing more than a playground for sexual misconduct was just about as believable as your pathetic frying of James Frey, the author of A Million Little Pieces. I truly believe you were hoping the information about the sexual misconduct wouldn’t come out.
I used to think you stood for the common people. Your show about the Los Angeles riots in 1992 was one of the most amazing things I’ve ever seen on television. Lately, however, you seemed to have lost your touch. You can speak out against poverty all you want while sitting on that golden toilet, but exploiting poverty for the sake of exploitation doesn’t help the problem.
I can also see how you use your show to brainwash your naïve viewers into buying expensive materialistic items for your profit and then preaching, the next day, how bad it is to get into debt. I’ll also never forget how you invited the alleged sexual predator on your show, Bill O’Reilly, to talk about — guess what — sexual predators! I also find it pretty hypocritical that, like the rest of the media, you blew the Imus controversy out of proportion and pretended to be the race savior of the world. Too bad you haven’t had a word to say about Halle Berry’s pathetic anti-Semitic remarks on the Jay Leno show. Tell me, Ms.“Racism is Bad,” is racism against one race more important than racism against another?
Let’s stick to the topic of race. You are the most successful African American personality to grace the television screen. You want us to believe how important your race is to you and, many times, have even acted as the savior of the African American race. Yet, I can think of at least five Black people I know who are absolutely disgusted with you. Five years ago, I would argue with them and defend you to the point of almost being hit.
I see you trying to be “Ms. African” by running to Africa and bragging about your charity school, while the African American children, here in the Unites States — you know, the country that you actually live in — are suffering from a huge dropout rate, horrific test scores, overcrowded classrooms, and violent school playgrounds. I don’t ever see you investing in the needy Black children of the United States because, of course, it wouldn’t garner publicity and ratings.
Oprah, you may think I’m being particularly hard on you when we have other fake celebrity philanthropists, such as Angelina Jolie and Bono. Angelina Jolie uses her adopted kids as photo ops while Bono is on a mission to save the world, not realizing that the world actually needs to be saved from Bono. Neither Angelina nor Bono, though, have the talent, charisma, and diverse audience that you have. That’s why your transparency hurts more.
Oprah, I think you need to take a break. I know that’s hard for you since you make a lot of money, but you could regain your focus. Remember when you first started, how effortless it was to move an audience? You didn’t need to constantly tell people, like you do now, how great you were because they could see it though your actions. Remember how natural the interaction with your celebrity guests used to be? Now, you unconvincingly fawn over some of your guests like a puppy dog, making some believe you are possibly being paid by their publicists. Remember when you used to be a role model for middle-aged women? Now, you do nothing but brainwash them with different propaganda used to fatten up your already fat wallet.
Despite all the recent negativity, I will always admire how you rose above a life of poverty and abuse in order to become, perhaps, the most successful female celebrity ever. Many people use the negativity they've experienced to inflict negativity on others. Instead, you turned yours into a great strength and inspired millions. If you keep destroying your legacy like you have been recently, though, please have some dignity and quit.
Your Former Concerned Fan,
View the article here
Flower Mound - One of the most outrageous stories becomes more bizarre. The son of Dr. Steven B. DavidSon, the author of the Christ-based Counseling series was arrested and jailed for a parole violation for finding a job. The probation officer, Sandra Bellows filed the violation stating that the younger DavidSon did not tell her that he would be in contact with children at Life Portrait Center. DavidSon explains that he told her about the job, but responding to pressure from vigilantes, Bellows denies he told her. DavidSon's probation allows employment where children are involved as long as it is approved by the probation officer.
The original charges are from a 2002 aggravated sexual assault charge, where the younger DavidSon was making-out in an auto with a white female. The officer approached the vehicle without probable cause, and simply began asking questions. After questioning by the officer, DavidSon discovered that she was only 13. Once arrested, the investigating officer asked for a statement from DavidSon without an attorney present. Trusting the law officer that he had done no wrong, DavidSon provided an incriminating statement.
DavidSon was charged based on his statement caring a penalty of 3 to 99 years. The week following the arrest, the teenager sent an email asking forgiveness for lying to DavidSon about her age.
Months later, DavidSon agreed to a deferred adjudication, 8 years probation, and 30 days in jail. However, during the plea hearing the judge declared sex offender registration. DavidSon was never counseled on the potential of sex offender registration, and had not considered it before accepting the plea.
According to the elder DavidSon the case is seen as an example by many of how the registration issue is out of control. "Tim is faithful in spite of the injustice. He is quite the contrary from what you might expect. He is completely confident that God will deliver him. He is not depressed or suffering from self pity. We are all similarly confident in the God we serve." According to the younger DavidSon, his probation officer was outraged by the Child-of-a-King Day inspired by his case. The elder DavidSon calls it a case of retaliatory persecution, and shares that Timothy was prepared to be jailed for it.
Nevertheless, Dr. DavidSon considers a much larger picture than the plight of his son. "Since our judicial system is biased, registration is an additional yoke upon everyone, but particularly minorities and the economically disadvantaged. However, Katrina proved that the mass demonstration model is minimally effective today. There's been no legislative change concerning the plight of the disadvantage. They netted $1000 debit cards and that's about it. If there's going to be significant change, we must return to the basis of change historically. The basis was and always has been faith in the God we serve."
Dr. DavidSon will be a featured speaker at the nation's first rally in support of legislative change concerning sex offender registration sponsored by So Clear Media. The theme of the rally is "Silence No More" in front of the State capital in Columbus, Ohio on December 1, 2007. DavidSon accepted the invitation on the grounds that he could be thoroughly Christ-based, and without any political affiliation. The organizers responded that "Christ-based" is exactly what they desired.
"Sex offenders are the lepers of our day, and a foreign mission field on our own shores. The Lord is stirring within me words for America, church-building dwellers, and the maligned everywhere."
Dennise Bates, CMO Associate
Phone: 972-987-1674, 713-775-8824
Web System: Christbasedcounseling.org, M2Maturity.org, Collegeplex.org, A3CEESaffirmed.org
View the article here
KEARNEY - A jury couldn't reach a verdict in his first trial, so a former Ravenna police officer faces another court test on sex-assault charges.
Attorney General Jon Bruning says his office will retry former Ravenna officer Larry Williams.
A Buffalo County District Court judge earlier this month declared a mistrial in Williams' case. Williams was accused of having a sexual relationship with a then-15-year-old girl.
The 51-year-old defendant has denied the charges, which include five counts of felony first-degree sexual assault and one count of felony sexual assault of a child.
The woman, now 20, says she and Williams had sex in 2002 and 2003 in Ravenna's police station, City Council chambers, a city pool and Williams' police cruiser.
View the article here
Video available at the site.
CBNNews.com - For years, lawmakers have been working to stamp out child porn, establishing task forces and enacting laws to make it a crime to distribute, solicit or promote sexually-explicit images of children.
"This is the dirtiest business you could ever think about. Let's do something about it," Sen. Richard Shelby, R-Ala., said.
But in today's Internet age, Congress has had a tough time balancing its efforts against what opponents call a violation of free speech.
Watch more from the ACLJ's Jay Sekulow on the child pornography issue, following CBN News reporter John Jessup's report.
Today's case centers around a law Congress passed in 2003 in an attempt to beef up penalties for child predators lurking on the Internet.
But part of the law was overturned by a lower court, ruling that it was too vague and unconstitutional. The court believed the law could ban not only harmfully obscene images of children. But even clean ones as well.
The government argues advertising child porn fuels the market, even when the promoted pictures are fakes.
But opponents counter that the law is so vague that it could even affect people who are trying to promote mainstream literature and movies.
The Supreme Court agreed with that view the last time it took on the subject of child porn laws, saying another congressional ban was so broad that it could have banned Shakespeare's "Romeo and Juliet."
So while some First Amendment rights supporters say they're protecting free speech, children's advocates wonder whether Congress can protect kids at all.
View the article here
Genarlow Wilson is by no means a martyr. Like many teens, I’m sure Wilson has made many stupid decisions. However, it was one in particular that put him in the national spotlight.
During a party, Wilson was caught on videotape having sex with a 17-year-old girl and then receiving oral sex from a 15-year-old girl.
By all accounts, the acts were consensual. The 15-year-old said she instigated it. Wilson and some friends were arrested and charged with rape and aggravated child molestation.
Although Wilson was acquitted of the rape charges, the oral sex led to a conviction for aggravated child molestation.
This alone wouldn’t send shockwaves except that, because of an old Georgia law where having intercourse with a minor was a misdemeanor, oral sex was a felony with a minimum sentence of 10 years. The tale of Wilson finally took a turn for the better Friday. The Georgia Supreme Court ruled that his mandatory 10-year sentence was cruel and unusual punishment for the circumstances.
But the lesson we should learn from Wilson goes beyond that Georgia has stiff penalties for oral sex that it doesn’t have for intercourse. It wasn’t just the state of Georgia that put Wilson in the spotlight. There really are not any true villains in the case. ESPN tried to make the district attorney out to be the villain, but even Wilson said he was just doing his job.
However, Wilson’s case brought up several red flags that all point to the same thing. The system didn’t work.
Former President Jimmy Carter and Sen. Barack Obama questioned the role of Wilson’s race in the arrest. Carter even wrote a letter to the Georgia Attorney General stating that white defendants in similar situations had received lighter punishments.
Some members of the jury said they didn’t know that convicting Wilson on that charge would lead to a mandatory 10-year sentence. Had they known, the verdict may have been different.
The Georgia Legislature quickly patched up the hole that caused Wilson’s sentence, yet wouldn’t make it retroactive. Another bill would have allowed the courts to reduce his sentence, but the Legislature didn’t vote on that bill before it convened.
Most importantly, though, Wilson’s defense was never allowed to have the tape that served as the basis for the prosecution’s case. Because of the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act, state prosecutors cannot release materials to criminal defendants if it constitutes child pornography.
But this law doesn’t prevent the district attorney from releasing the tape to legislators, reporters and anyone else who asks, which is exactly what happened in Wilson’s case.
Wilson never had a fair trial. He couldn’t defend himself when the only physical evidence that convicted him remained out of his reach. The system failed Wilson, and it may fail more. In many child pornography cases, the only evidence includes the pornographic materials. Logically, there is no way for defendants to contradict the charges if they don’t have access to the materials. Yet the law has kept these materials out of reach of those who need them most, even if they are open record to everyone else.
Wilson wasn’t a threat to anyone, and his case had a relatively happy ending. He eventually got released.
But there’s a lesson to learn. Wilson’s case wasn’t about protecting others or enacting the law: it was about convicting him. If the system is stacked against defendants, Wilson won’t be the last to bear the burden. The next Wilson may not be so lucky.
View the article here
Video available at the site.
A rape victim has filed a lawsuit against a former police officer, the chief of police, and the city. She says her civil liberties were stripped when former officer Ruben Saenz raped her inside her own home. The rape happened exactly two years ago.
Saenz was fired from the police department and sent to prison for the rape. He's being released November 17th. The woman's attorneys say Saenz got in trouble a number of times before the rape for things like possession of pornography, public intoxication and racing on the highway.
“The police department and the chief knew that this guy could be what is termed a bad apple,” explained David McQuade Leibowitz, the victim’s attorney.
Those victim’s attorneys say if proper discipline action would have been taken by the San Antonio Police Department, their client may have never been raped.
The city attorney says they are looking into the lawsuit. The trial should take place in six to twelve months.
View the article here
A former Brandon police officer pleaded guilty Monday to two counts of statutory rape and was sentenced to 10 years in prison.
James Hobson, 31, also was ordered by Rankin County Circuit Judge Samac Richardson to serve 5 years' supervised probation after his release and register as a convicted sex offender.
Hobson, 31, admitted having sex with a 15-year-old girl on at least two occasions in 2006.
Hobson was ordered not to contact the victim.