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ALTADENA - As the last of six high-risk sex offenders moved from their halfway home at Risinghill Road on Monday, county officials began efforts to tighten laws on where they and others like them can live.
"We want a comprehensive study of the state law to find out where the county can create more restrictive requirements," said Tony Bell, spokesman for county Supervisor Michael Antonovich, who is leading the effort.
At today's board meeting, Antonovich is expected to ask his fellow supervisors to direct county lawyers to study the situation and report back in two weeks.
The news of Antonovich's efforts was welcomed by residents of The Meadows, the isolated Altadena community that until Monday was home to the six men charged with lewd or lascivious acts with children under 14, forced rape and sexual battery.
Still, said Altadena resident Jane Szabo, "nobody's answering the question of where they can be. I think that's the bigger question."
Monday afternoon, state Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation officials were unable to say where the six parolees would be relocated to, in part because of concerns for their safety.
The men were moved in part because of threats made against them, said Gordon Hinkle, deputy press secretary for the Department of Corrections, as well as because of uncertainty in whether nearby Angeles National Forest constituted a park.
- And they should have brought up charges on the people who threatened them, that is against the law. The California sex offender registry says so.
Sex offenders are prohibited from living within 2,000 feet of parks or places where children congregate.
"We were working closely with local law enforcement to find another suitable location that would be compliant," Hinkle said.
The Department of Corrections is responsible for only about 10 percent of high-risk sex offenders - those who are on parole - and is not required to find them housing after their release from prison, he said.
Parole officers provide assistance on a "case-by-case basis," Hinkle said. "We'd rather not have them be transient."
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Saturday, March 8, 2008
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Well it's obvious an adult should not be french kissing a child. But it seems kind of strange they are making a law about one issue. What about everything else they should not be doing?
RICHMOND (AP) - Adults who French kiss a child younger than 13 would be required to register as a sex offender under legislation passed out of the General Assembly.
- 13 only? What about grandma french kissing a 14, 15, 16, 17 or 18 year old? Nasty!!!!
Those convicted of tongue-kissing a child would be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor, punishable by up to one year in jail and a $2,500 fine.
Saturday, the House passed the legislation 96-1 and the Senate 39-0. It now heads to Governor Timothy Kaine.
The House of Delegates originally wanted the crime to be a felony, but gave in to senators who thought that was too harsh.
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Notice this story had nothing to do with sex offenders, yet the reporter felt it necessary to add "SEX OFFENDER" to the headline. It was about an insane person murdering someone else, and he was not a sex offender, so why was sex offender even brought up?
ST. PETERSBURG - Pinellas County sheriff's deputies arrested a transient early today in the fatal stabbing of a woman at a mobile home park for registered sex offenders.
- Why even mention this? Can you say hidden agenda?
Christopher Robertson, 41, was arrested at 12:15 a.m. while he was sitting in the carport of Lot 348 at the Palace Mobile Home Park, according to the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office. A witness had reported seeing him at the park, 2500 54th Ave. N., near Interstate 275.
Robertson is charged with second degree murder in the stabbing of 22-year-old Anna Marie Kasvicis about 1 p.m. Friday. Sheriff's detectives said Robertson admitted in an interview his involvement in the crime.
The investigation continues.
Deputies said Robertson knew Kasvicis and that they were arguing when the stabbing occurred in Lot 274. Deputies have not said what the argument was about. They said the pair was not dating.
Kasvicis was pronounced dead at a hospital.
Palace Mobile Home Park has Pinellas' highest concentration of sexual offenders and sexual predators, but Robertson isn't an offender or predator, sheriff's spokeswoman Marianne Pasha said.
- SO WHY EVEN MENTION THIS FACT??? Oh yeah, got to make a good headline to draw in the sheeple..
A similar mobile home park in Palm River recently became controversial when nearby residents tried to force the sexual offenders living there to leave.
- And again, why even mention this? Sounds like you have an agenda here...
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HEY CONGRESS! Here is the reason the registry should be taken off line, the public CANNOT handle the information in a civilized manner.
A 21-year-old Appleton man accused of attacking a registered sex offender withdrew his insanity plea Friday.
Defense attorney Ron Colwell changed David T. Starkey's plea to not guilty. Outagamie County Circuit Judge Dee Dyer scheduled the case for trial on June 3.
Starkey is charged with substantial battery, bail jumping and disorderly conduct in connection with the Aug. 30 attack in Appleton.
Dyer had ordered a mental exam for Starkey after he entered an insanity plea to the charges on Nov. 30.
The results of that exam, presented Friday, did not support his insanity claim, so Colwell changed Starkey's plea to not guilty.
"Mr. Starkey doesn't meet the legal medical standard for an NGI (insanity) plea, and we would withdraw our plea of not guilty by reason of mental disease or defect," Colwell said.
Starkey is accused of a vicious beating of a 33-year-old Appleton man on Aug. 30 whom he allegedly targeted because of his status as a registered sex offender.
The victim required hospitalization for treatment of extensive facial injuries and lost teeth, according to court records.
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Sex offenders are among the least popular people in America today.
Probation officers work for judges.
So for a man who has been convicted of sex offenses, taking on a probation officer in court is a big uphill battle.
But that is what Matthew Glasser, who has lived in South Windsor and Tolland in recent months, started to do on Friday, as he embarked on a rare hearing to contest a probation violation charge in Hartford Superior Court.
There is no right to a jury trial in probation violation cases, so the decision will be up to Judge Edward J. Mullarkey, who is presiding.
Glasser, 32, a former music teacher at Northwest Catholic High School in West Hartford, got a seven-year suspended sentence and five years' probation in October. He had pleaded no contest to witness tampering and five counts of fourth-degree sexual assault.
Glasser originally had been charged with eight counts of second-degree sexual assault based on allegations that he repeatedly had sexual intercourse with a 16-year-old student at Northwest Catholic. Although 16 is the age of consent for intercourse in Connecticut, the law prohibits sex between students and teachers in elementary or secondary schools.
Just four months after he was sentenced, Glasser was back in court last month facing a probation violation charge.
In a 17-page arrest warrant affidavit, which the judge said was the longest he had ever seen in such a case, Probation Officer Lisa Mandeville-McGeough detailed allegations that Glasser had violated his probation conditions. She charged that he had failed to live in an approved location, failed to keep her informed of his whereabouts, and failed to cancel e-mail and other Internet communication accounts.
When Glasser started on probation in October, he was living with his parents at 154 Graham Road in South Windsor. But Mandeville-McGeough rejected that location on grounds that it was a quarter mile from Wapping Elementary School and half a mile from South Windsor High School.
Under cross examination Friday by Glasser's lawyer, former Chief State's Attorney John J. Kelly, Mandeville-McGeough acknowledged that there is "no specific distance" that a sex offender has to live away from schools.
"It's based on a lot of different factors," she said. "It's based on the overall risk to the community."
After more than a month of insistence from Mandeville-McGeough that he move out of his parents' house, Glasser reported to her that he had spent a night at a shelter for the homeless in Hartford. But she said it wasn't the shelter he had told her he would be staying at - and that he failed to inform her of his whereabouts for the next five days.
Over time, Glasser sought probation office approval to move to several addresses, but all were ultimately denied, either because Mandeville-McGeough or other probation officers concluded that they were too close to areas frequented by children or because Glasser failed to provide all the information the probation office needed.
Mandeville-McGeough testified that she told Glasser he could live at 860 Main St. in East Hartford, the Church Corners Inn rooming house.
Eventually, in December, the probation office permitted Glasser to move in with his best friend's father at 26 Ann Drive in Tolland. But the office soon revoked that approval after getting an e-mail from a neighborhood resident who reported that 14 children were living within six houses on either side of the Ann Drive house.
It was clear from Mandeville-McGeough's testimony Friday and from her arrest-warrant affidavit that Glasser has clashed repeatedly with her throughout his few months on probation. He started out on the wrong foot by telling her at their first meeting that he didn't believe he was a sex offender.
She also quoted him as saying, "My family has taken the legislative stance that I did not commit the offense that I was arrested for and I did nothing illegal."
The hearing is to continue Friday, March 14, in Hartford Superior Court.
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Pure vigilantism supported by congress no less. This country is definitely going to collapse on itself when we start allowing this kind of stuff to occur.
STONY BROOK - After a quick aerial survey of Long Island and the sites where its 1,200 registered sex offenders reside, Laura Ahearn used her computer’s mouse to swoop down on the Nassau County village of Hempstead, dotted with 50 icons resembling pushpins: green for Level 2 offenders, blue for Level 3. She headed east over Brentwood in Suffolk County, home to about 60 offenders, and zeroed in on the thickest cluster: the Gordon Heights section of Coram, with 69 pushpins, more than a dozen crowded onto a single block.
She clicked on one pushpin icon, and up popped a picture, complete with dossier: Age, 67. A Level 3 offender. Drives a red Ford Focus. Convicted of first-degree sexual abuse of an 11-year-old girl.
For the past decade, Ms. Ahearn has been painstakingly compiling such information about sex offenders and distributing it — first by hand, then by e-mail — to their neighbors, including updates like a new car or new scar. Last week, her nonprofit advocacy group, Parents for Megan’s Law and the Crime Victims’ Center, received a $593,000 federal grant to take the project national, using the sharp new mapping program that enables such a computerized tour.
“Probably safer than giving it in person,” said Ms. Ahearn, 44, a tough-talking smoker and workaholic who started the group as a grass-roots crusade with several volunteers and now has 25 part- and full-time employees and a million-dollar annual budget. “Sex offenders may be good at what they do, but all of us are getting better at what we do.”
Senator Charles E. Schumer and Representatives Timothy H. Bishop, Pete King and Carolyn McCarthy all joined Ms. Ahearn in her inconspicuous office in a strip mall here to announce the federal grant. The group plans to use the money to compile sex offender data from all 50 states into maps on a revamped version of parentsformeganslaw.com, its Web site, scheduled to make its debut on May 1; to create a national e-mail notification program to alert people about offenders in their ZIP code; and to establish a toll-free number that Ms. Ahearn says will be the first national Megan’s Law help line.
Critics call Ms. Ahearn’s zealous pursuit of sex offenders counterproductive and unconstitutional, and contend that overexposure can deter the offenders from checking in with the authorities.
“Mapping out sex offenders makes them greater social lepers than they already are,” said Seth Muraskin, executive director of the Suffolk County chapter of the New York Civil Liberties Union. “You’re fostering punishment, not rehabilitation, and you’re leaving them very vulnerable to mob justice. You’re basically challenging vigilantes to come to their doors.”
Notification has also caused some complications. In Southbury, Conn., neighbors recently petitioned the local authorities to reduce their property tax assessments, claiming that a registered sex offender’s recent move into the area had brought down the value of their homes.
But Ms. Ahearn is constantly pushing for more restrictive laws against sex offenders on local, state and federal levels. She worked with lawmakers on state legislation limiting online activities of sex offenders, and on the federal Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act of 2006.
She supports state legislation that would require real estate brokers to provide house hunters with sex offender registry material, as well as a proposed Suffolk County regulation against renting to more than one sex offender per residence. She opposes, however, a proposal to prohibit registered sex offenders from residing within a quarter-mile of homes for the elderly, worrying that it could be used to overturn existing residency requirements prohibiting sex offenders from living near schools, parks and day care centers.
After Ms. Ahearn fought to keep paroled sex offenders out of homeless shelters, Suffolk County in 2006 began placing them in a trailer it promised to move from location to location to avoid overburdening any one area; lately officials have been keeping the trailer next to the county jail in Riverhead.
Long Island has had its share of nationally covered sex crimes — from the Friedmans of Great Neck, whose strange tale was documented in the film “Capturing the Friedmans,” to the Katie Beers dungeon case — and Ms. Ahearn has harnessed the issue to attain national prominence.
She is on a first-name basis with elected officials and has gained folk-hero status in many neighborhoods dense with sex offenders.
Ms. Ahearn, a mother of two, was studying to become a social worker when New York State enacted Megan’s Law in 1995, and she found that it was difficult, despite the new disclosure requirements, to get the names and addresses of local sex offenders from the authorities. So she began pressuring politicians and the police, all the while compiling her own local registry and posting it online, complete with offenders’ addresses and graphic details about their crimes.
Publicizing such details has provoked anger among those on Ms. Ahearn’s registry, and after numerous threatening phone calls, she moved her office out of her home in 2000. At the strip mall, one room holds a mock witness stand and stenography machine that are used to familiarize children with the setting before they testify in court. Ms. Ahearn’s office walls are lined with photographs of politicians and notorious sex offenders, and drawings by victimized children.
On Tuesday, workers were cross-checking registry information and preparing updates for school districts and community groups, based on the latest state data and notifications mailed from dozens of local police departments, a vital source of information on Level 1 offenders.
Early on, volunteers would gather information by visiting local police departments and hand-copying details to type later into the database. The group distributed the information to schools and community groups by mail or in person. Though much of the latest information is now computerized, the group still has a huge number of files in binders, labeled by ZIP code, by last name and by offender level.
“These people navigate under the radar screen,” Ms. Ahearn said of the offenders. “We want them to know they’re being watched.”
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LEALMAN -- A petty argument turned deadly Friday for a pregnant mother of two, who was fatally stabbed at a mobile home park for sex offenders.
Pinellas County Sheriff's deputies are searching for Christopher Robertson, 41, who they said stabbed Anna Marie Kasvicis, 22, about 12:40 p.m.
Robert Piccolo, 20, said his fiancee was dropping off groceries at his lot at the Palace Mobile Home Park on her way to a job interview. He said she commented to Robertson, who had been staying there since he got out of jail, that he wasn't to touch the food.
Piccolo said that triggered a back-and-forth that ended when Robertson, 41, grabbed a butcher knife from the kitchen and stabbed her in the chest. Piccolo witnessed the altercation.
"I wish he would have stabbed me," said Piccolo, who said he met Robertson in jail and was doing him a favor by taking him in. "She was a wonderful person."
Piccolo said Kasvicis was two months pregnant with his baby and leaves behind a girl and a boy, ages 7 and 4.
Robertson is described as a white man with short salt-and-pepper hair, about 6 feet tall and 170 pounds. He was last seen wearing a black shirt and blue jeans.
Neighbor Maribel Guzman, 44, said she saw Robertson running out of the park as she was on her way back from the store.
"She was a baby, a gorgeous young lady," said Guzman, who said she's known the victim for five years. "She didn't deserve this."
Kasvicis was taken by ambulance to Bayfront Medical Center in St. Petersburg, where she was pronounced dead, said Cecilia Barreda, spokeswoman for the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office.
The Palace Mobile Home Park houses nearly 100 sex offenders. They have found it a haven after manager Nancy Morais persuaded the owner to start admitting them a few years ago. The move was inspired by her son, himself a sex offender, who struggled to find a place to live.
Robertson has faced charges of aggravated battery and kidnapping and was released from the Pinellas County Jail last month, after which he started staying at the park.
But he is not a sex offender, and Palace manager Morais said the residents of lot 274, where the stabbing occurred, are not part of the sex offender program either.
Tucked in the southwest corner of 54th Avenue N and Interstate 275, the park was quiet Friday afternoon as deputies with cameras guarded three rows of mobile homes wrapped in caution tape.
Neighbor Richard Reckert, 59, said Robertson had been hanging around the park lately, sometimes walking the dog of the residents at lot 274.
He lamented the way the killing would appear to the public.
"This place is going to get buried," he said. "It's going to get blown up like some sex offender did it."
Morais said she has more trouble with the private owners in her park than with the sex offenders. Because offenders are on probation, they're easier to refer to police when they cause problems, she said.
Morais spoke to reporters before driving to Hillsborough County, where she's involved with a similarly controversial park. Her nonprofit organization, Florida Justice Transitions, runs a Palm River mobile home park housing a small group of sex offenders.
On Friday, county officials determined they could not remove the offenders based on a county ordinance.
"I'm very proud of what the guys have done here, and I don't want this to come up against them," Morais said.
Times researcher Angie Drobnic Holan contributed to this report. Stephanie Garry can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (727) 892-2374.
So now, from what this is saying, is people cannot even visit the people being held in Civil Commitment center. Not sure where this is, but I think it's the place in California, which is the second video below.
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Video is available at the site.
03/08/2008 PALM RIVER - Eleven convicted sex offenders and predators again will be able to call Judi's Mobile Home Park their home.
The Hillsborough County Attorney's Office, however, has determined that because the mobile home park is within 300 feet of a school bus stop, the convicted sex predators living at the mobile home park at 5011 24th Ave. S. will have to watch their step - literally.
Under a county ordinance passed in March 2007, sexual predators aren't allowed within 300 feet of a bus stop, school, playground or other place where children congregate. There is a bus stop on 50th Street and 24th Avenue South about 250 feet from the mobile home park owned by Rooring Lake Gilbert LLC.
Six of the 11 men living at Judi's are convicted sex predators. A sex predator is someone who has been convicted of more than one crime or a more serious crime.
The proximity of the bus stop severely limits the movements of those six men, said Assistant County Attorney Sheree Fish.
"They can sleep in their trailers, but they can't do other things the neighbors have been telling us about, like standing around outside smoking, cutting through their yards and walking up and down the street," she said.
She said her office has notified the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office to watch for violators, who ultimately could receive a $500 fine and jail time.
It wasn't the victory that residents of the J&L Mobile Home Park across the street had sought when they went before the Hillsborough County Commission on Thursday asking that something be done about the transitional housing facility for sex offenders run by the nonprofit Florida Justice Transitions.
Initially, residents of both mobile home parks were told the sex offenders had 24 hours to leave.
Instead of leaving, the offenders sought the advice of Tampa lawyer Janine Cohen.
"The ordinance only applies to loitering," said Cohen, adding that the Florida Department of Corrections approved this location for the Florida Justice Transitions facility.
"A man sleeping in his bed is not equal to loitering," she said. "The assistant county attorney didn't do proper research and was ready to put these men out on the streets. Fortunately, when they were told they had to move they came to an attorney looking for help. We don't want them to hide. We want to know where they are."
"We wrote the law. We know what it says," Fish countered. She said the law was intended for situations such as this.
"These families shouldn't have to worry about these men walking through their trailer park. This will prevent it."
Residents had mixed feelings about the outcome, especially after Nancy Morais, founder of Florida Justice Transitions, visited Thursday night to discuss her program, which provides counseling services and support for the men along with a place to live and continual monitoring by probation officers and sheriff's deputies.
"I had a change of heart," resident Mary Hogan said. "I think it would hurt the community more if we kicked them out. This way, we can keep an eye on them."
Even child safety advocate Judy Cornett is rethinking her opinion on clustering sex offenders.
"I think Nancy's heart is in the right place," Cornett said. "She just hasn't fine-tuned this thing. She needs to invest in an industrial area, away from families with children. You don't turn a 2-year-old loose in a toy store and expect them not to touch the toys."
Single mother of three Carla Bowling wasn't convinced.
"The woman's got a good heart, but my number one concern is the kids," she said. "A lot of the men in that trailer park were convicted of crimes against children under 12 and I've got an 11-year-old daughter. Now I can never relax. I can never be comfortable in my own home."
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Video available at the site, and here. Why don't you just make it a bullseye? Might as well!
A state bill is in the works that could make spotting a sex offender easier at least if they are in their car. The bill would require sex offenders to have a special license plates indicating their offender status.
The green plates would allow people to see if an offender is parked near a school or park which current state laws don't address.
Of the 58,000 non family child abductions annually, the Department of Justice says most of those happen by luring the victims into cars. Opponents of the bill call, call the bill a scarlet letter similar to failed proposals for special plates for habitual drunk drivers.