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Video is available on the site above.
The mother and step mother of a 15-year-old boy who had a sexual relationship with his girlfriend's mother - said today is the beginning of a new chapter.
"I never thought this would happen, now it's time to get back to a normal life," his step mother said.
Forty-one year old Roseanne Allen pleaded guilty to assault with intent to commit criminal sexual conduct. She was sentenced Wednesday to six months in jail and five years probation.
"Today is a good day," the victim's mother said.
Allen said little in court... her lawyer told judge William Collette his client was sorry.
"She is regretful of any hardship she has brought to her family and his family as well," Allen's lawyer said.
The victim's family said the relationship started a year and half ago, when the boy was just 14 years old.
"She put her name on his emergency contact list from school," his mother said. "That meant she could take him out, bring him in. He was missing a lot of school."
The family started to take a closer look.
"Something wasn't right," his step mother said. "We pursued it and come to find out they were having a sexual relationship."
Allen will have to undergo psychiatric counseling when she's released from jail. She will also be a registered sex offender.
"I don't know what kind of warped mind it takes for a mother to go out with a 15-year-old," the victim's mother said.
Despite their anger, the family is ready to move on.
"It's the start of the beginning that we get him back to the 15-year-old he should be," his step mother said.
Wednesday, May 28, 2008
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Here is another clueless politicians using the backs of sex offenders to further his career and some other possibly hidden agenda. Study after study shows these laws won't work and aren't working, yet they continue, and we have TONS of law suits, thus wasting tons of tax payer dollars to defend a law which WILL eventually be shot down as unconstitutional.
You will also hear this idiot says "Sex offender, pedophiles!" Which he is trying to make all sex offenders appear to be pedophiles, which is flat out deception! Politicians will say and do anything to further some agenda, and you notice he doesn't cite many studies about the information he is saying, which is basically lies anyway. Study after study, and expert after expert will tell you what he is saying is BS!
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Video is available at the site as well.
Incident Allegedly Took Place Inside Subway Bathroom
NEW YORK (CBS) ― An NYPD captain has been suspended after allegedly exposing himself to a man in a subway bathroom, an incident that CBS 2 has learned isn't the first in which high-ranking police have faced sexual charges.
The police captain, who is assigned to the transit bureau, was identified as 51-year-old Jeffrey Klimas. He's been charged with public lewdness for what allegedly happened at the Union Turnpike station in a bathroom.
"An arrest has been made. He obviously has the right to his day in court," said Commissioner Ray Kelly. "It's an allegation here, stemming from a contact with a complainant."
Klimas, who is a 25-year veteran, resides in New Hyde Park on Long Island with his wife and two children.
Neighbors don't believe the allegation.
"Anybody can make up charges. I can make up things about you when the camera is off. People just make up charges," said one neighbor, who asked to remain anonymous.
What's curious is that this isn't the first time Klimas has faced such charges. In 2003, a teen claimed that the captain fondled him on a 4-train.
But an investigation determined the claim was unfounded.
And it's not the first time police brass have been in trouble either under similar circumstances. Last October, another NYPD captain, Michael DeBellis, retired in disgrace, after admitting he exposed himself to a female officer in a Bronx precinct house.
In another case just a week-and-a-half ago, an NYPD sergeant was arrested for allegedly forcing a relative's adopted son to have sex with him. The suspect pleaded not guilty.
Police try to screen out recruits with problems, but police historian Robert McCree says the system isn't perfect.
"Someone who might otherwise be a good police officer and a fine human being has this psycho-sexual problem that probably is treatable, but now finds himself in circumstances where he faces a really difficult situation," said McCree.
As for Klimas, who is charged with two counts of public lewdness, his suspension is for at least 30 days without pay, while police investigate.
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Roslindale - A number of recent news stories concerned moves by South Shore towns to control where sex offenders may live in their communities. The idea of passing such ordinances sounds good on paper, but does that mean that is enough to protect children from sex offenders? Recently, both Rockland and Weymouth have passed either an ordinance or town bylaw to keep sex offenders from living near children, prohibiting them from living near schools, daycare centers, parks and other places frequented by children.
As a special state police officer for the Metro Boston DMH Police Department since 1985, I have known of many sexual predators, pedophiles, level twos and threes who are in long-term treatment for their disease, which endangers the public. No one wants untreated sex offenders roaming our streets and communities. It is a scary situation because, for the most part, many of these offenders look just like you and me.
Local ordinances telling offenders where they can or cannot live doesn’t really make us safer as a society. I find such measures little more than feel-good quick fixes. Just as the Sex Offender Registry offers little protection, the real question that needs to be answered at the state level: What do we do with dangerous sex offenders who complete their prison terms? Many times prosecutors seek a civil commitment of one day to life, but many times, actually 50 percent of the time, judges don’t buy it and release them to the streets.
- Not all sex offenders are dangerous, like the above statements seem to say!
Releasing dangerous predators to the streets is a high-risk gamble. The present system is working as well as planned, which is pushing municipalities to keep sex offenders either out of town or restricted to tiny areas. The system must be fixed at the state level at the State House.
I can understand why, reportedly, the Weymouth Police want no role in a sex offender ordinance. The Weymouth police chief thinks residency rules should be a civil matter. Bottom line here: the best way to protect yourself and children is to be careful, very careful. When it comes to protecting children from sex offenders, the job is really up to parents. For every known sex offender, how many are flying under the legal radar? Welcome to the reality of 2008.
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Contact: Stacy Brenton
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Yesterday, The Des Moines Register praised Ed Fallon for his 2002 vote against a bill that prohibited sex offenders from living within 2,000 feet of schools or day care centers. The Register said, "… he was frequently on the right side of issues…. He was the only House member to vote against the 2,000-foot residency restriction for certain sex offenders, a law that virtually banished them from many communities, making them harder to track, while driving up costs for law enforcement."
Coincidentally, voters in the Third District received a mailing yesterday asking them "Why does Ed Fallon think it's ok for sex offenders to live near schools?" As a backdrop, it included a photo of a prisoner in an orange jumpsuit looking though a fence at children in a playground. The mailer was sent by Boswell supporter Richard (Red) Brannan of Ankeny and had no return address.
Fallon said, "This is an example of cynical, negative politics. This mailer was sent out only a week before the election to make it look as if I support sex offenders. I call on Congressman Boswell to reject and renounce this misinformation and ask his supporters to cease their efforts to disparage my character and reputation."
Fallon says he voted against the bill because, "I knew that it would only make matters worse." He has been proven right.
Today, prosecutors, sheriffs, police and those who work with victims of sexual abuse agree that the bill was a mistake. The Iowa County Attorneys Association opposes the bill and acknowledges, "The research shows that there is no correlation between residency restrictions and reducing sex offenses against children or improving the safety of children." Scott County prosecutor Bill Davis put it clearly when he said of the law, "It's the wrong path. It doesn't make anyone safe…." Common sense tells you why. The law doesn't keep sex offenders from visiting schools, as the mailer depicts; it doesn't restrict their movements at all.
In fact, most agree it has actually made children less safe. According to the Iowa Coalition Against Sexual Assault, since the law went into effect, the number of sex offenders that the system has lost track of has more than doubled.
State representative and retired state trooper, Clel Baulder said, "The residency restriction was passed on emotion and emotion has no intelligence."
"I opposed a bill that is now generally agreed to be a mistake - by prosecutors, sheriffs, police, lawmakers who supported it at the time, and those who work with the victims of sexual assault," concluded Fallon.
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She and her friends spent hours in the marsh, cutting down the cattails to make rooms and bending and tying the stems to form tunnels. When the work was done, the girls played with their dolls and munched on peanut butter sandwiches, she recalled. Rag rugs made the perfect mat for lying on the ground and gazing up at the sky.
While other kids may not have gone to such lengths, they still loved being outside. For centuries, the outdoors has been a playscape for small hands and feet. Youngsters lived for the never-ending ball games, tree climbing races and imaginary world of superheroes, cowboys and queens. If they were thirsty, they drank from the garden hose or begged Mom for lemonade. If they were hot, there was always the pool or pond.
There's no denying that those sights aren't as common as they used to be. Cultural shifts have left parks sometimes as empty as Death Valley.
For Berger, who now lives in Fond du Lac, progress was one culprit.
"One summer, the bulldozers showed up to make a street over the marsh where we had played," she said. "Even though by then I was too old for such silly stuff, a special part of my childhood was turned under with that equipment."
Parents, ever caring for their child's safety, may fear predators. Lt. Steve Klein of the Fond du Lac Police Department said today's culture is becoming increasingly aware of potential risks, even though the threat itself hasn't changed.
"We've had sex offenders around for decades," he said. "Now, you can go online and see where they live."
The real hurdles to outside play aren't criminals, he noted. Klein believes today's children visit digital playgrounds. Video game systems, computers and television are a greater distraction for young minds.
Beverly Farr, a mother of five from Fond du Lac, agreed that she's noticed fewer kids playing outside these days. That's why she encouraged all her children to go out. She said her youngest daughter, 4, loves playing tag and taking walks. Her other children, who are now grown, used to play water games. They even brought their plastic farm animals outdoors.
Farr said she knows from experience that outdoor play benefits the mind and body. She and her twin sister spent their younger days outdoors in nature, where they could let their minds run free.
"We used to pretend that we were Lewis and Clark on expeditions," she said. "We didn't want to be inside. We wanted to be outside."
For Barbara Ronning of Fond du Lac, imagination made the Lakeside Park lighthouse into a castle spire or ship.
"Sometimes we climbed up the winding stairway to reach the observation deck," she said. "You could pretend to be a damsel in distress or watch for pirates at sea."
Ronning doesn't bear a grudge against technology, but she wonders about its impact on a child's imagination.
"Although I love using my computer now, I would have missed so much fun if I had one when I was a kid," she said.
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Again with the word "punishment!" All the politicians say these laws are not punishment but regulatory... What a load of BS! Everyone knows they are punishment, so therefore, punishing sex offenders after the fact is unconstitutional, period!
05/28/2008 CONCORD — Lawmakers plan to meet today to vet changes to two bills that deal with creating a new system for classifying sex offenders and how to punish them.
New Hampshire is trying to develop a three-tier system for classifying sexual offenders and offenders against children.
It would make public an offender's criminal history — whether it's a minor offense, such as indecent exposure, or a more serious one such as the rape of a child.
The bill also proposes to eliminate or limit teens who have been put on the state's current list because they had consensual sex with someone close in age, but not old enough to legally give consent.
Changes to the sex offender registry are being made in order to comply with the federal Adam Walsh Child Protection Act, which is setting standards for all 50 states to develop a more detailed format of registering sex offenders.
- Which is basically extortion. If they do not comply, they do not get the grant money that they will get if they are compliant.
Another bill aiming to increase penalties for those possessing child pornography also will be considered. That bill may ultimately determine how old a teen must be to legally consent to sex. Lawmakers are considering whether to keep the age of consent at 16 or increase it to 18.
That's one of the differences that will be discussed today, when a group of House and Senate members meet in conference committee to negotiate proposed changes to both bills.
Last week, the Senate removed a House provision that would have required the state to collect DNA from all felons. Instead, the bill now seeks to require DNA samples from sex offenders and violent offenders.
The Senate also doesn't want to publicly list where sex offenders work. Senators said they thought that could inadvertently punish employers.
- Good. If they did pass this, the companies would just fire the employee and thus more punishment due to them losing their jobs and possibly not being able to find another one.
Sen. Joseph Foster (Email), D-Nashua, said he believes the differences between legislators are minor. He said senators have been seeking a shorter time span for minor offenders to be posted on the sex offender registry, from 15 years to 10.
Foster said if the committee can come to an agreement by noon Friday, the bills would have to be approved by the full House and Senate before moving to Gov. John Lynch's (Contact) desk.
New Hampshire has until next year to revamp its sex offender registry to comply with the Walsh Act. Lawmakers and state prosecutors have been working on the proposed system since 2006.
Rep. Gene Charron, D-Chester, is a lead sponsor for revamping the sex offender registry. He said he's withholding his opinion on the proposed changes offered by the Senate until he can meet with the committee later this week.
"I don't want to lessen what we've worked on for a year and a half," he said.
Charron said maintaining a DNA database is "critically important" and hopes the majority of the bill will remain intact.
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An attorney who had a Geneva office has been disbarred after being convicted of sex crimes.
According to the Illinois Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission, William Murphy, 34, was disbarred by consent.
His law license had been suspended in February.
In July 2006, Murphy was charged with indecent solicitation of a child, attempted aggravated assault and using the Internet to arrange a sexual encounter with a 15-year-old.
In October 2007, a DuPage County judge sentenced Murphy, of the 2000 block of Prairie Lane, Woodridge, to 30 days in jail and 30 months of sex offender probation.
- What about being on the sex offender registry? Guess it's all in who you know!
Murphy's office at been in the 2000 block of South Batavia Avenue in Geneva. He was licensed in 2000.
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OSHKOSH (AP) -- A 41-year-old Oshkosh woman accused of having a sexual relationship with a 13-year-old boy has been charged with three felony counts of sexual assault of a child.
Authorities discovered the relationship after Teresa Cantrall let the boy drive a car and he was pulled over for speeding.
After police arrested both of them, the boy told officers he and Cantrall had sex about a dozen times since last summer.
According to the criminal complaint, Cantrall told investigators she met the boy about two years ago and contacted him at least twice a week.
Prosecutors quote her as saying the boy's parents wanted a restraining order against her but the boy would sneak out to meet her anyway.
The complaint says she acknowledged knowing he was 13 and she knew it was wrong but she loved him very much.
She was ordered held at the Winnebago County Jail in lieu of a $5,000 cash bond.
View the article here | Follow Up Article
Read both articles to see that this was sex offender related. And you see the registry did not protect anybody in this case, now three people are dead!
ECHOLS COUNTY — A feud among neighbors that continued to intensify despite the efforts of Echols County law enforcement may have contributed to the deaths of three men Sunday night.
Echols County Sheriff Randy Courson said that it could be several weeks before the Georgia Bureau of Investigation releases any sort of official report on the domestic dispute gone wrong. He said that the process of conducting autopsies and toxicology tests can be a slow one. He does not know when all of the findings will be made available to his office.
“We just have to wait,” he said.
At 11:28 p.m. Sunday, an Echols County Sheriff’s Office deputy, whose name is being withheld until the GBI investigation has been completed, was sent to address a downed power line, Courson noted. A few minutes later, he received word of a complaint of loud music and shots fired in the 200 block of Lisa Circle. The deputy cleared the power line and then made his way to the neighborhood, which sits some 100 yards from the intersection of Lisa Circle and Tince Road. He arrived on the scene at 11:58 p.m., Courson said.
Despite rumors to the contrary, Courson said that was the only time the deputy had been dispatched to the neighborhood that particular evening.
On the scene, Courson said the deputy addressed the excessive noise issue with the men and women involved. While he was doing so, a verbal dispute occurred between at least one of the women and a next-door neighbor living at 207 Lisa Circle. That dispute soon turned physical, he added.
As the deputy addressed that situation, 67-year-old Billy Corbett of 207 Lisa Circle pulled a small caliber handgun and fatally wounded David Coody Jr., 35, of Lowndes County, and Chad Wiggins, 36, resident of the home with the alleged loud music. Corbett was then shot and killed by the deputy. He was not shot in the back or shot while lying on the ground, contrary to rumors, Courson said.
Earlier this year, Courson said the Corbett family allowed a convicted child molester to move into a single-wide mobile home on their property with their granddaughter. The Corbetts live in a double-wide mobile home on the same tract of land. Their neighbors did not approve of the registered sex offender living near their children and filed complaints with the Echols County Sheriff’s Office.
“I think the bad blood between them pretty much stemmed from that,” Courson shared. “They really didn’t have any problems before that happened — except a dispute a little while back over land and putting up a fence.”
“We tried to address the situation,” he continued. “We increased patrol in the area, but things simply escalated. I understand their concern as they have small children. We could not legally force the man to move to another neighborhood. From day one, he complied with all requirements. He has done everything he was supposed to do.”
Courson said he does not believe the man was on the property when the shootings occurred Sunday.
No charges have been filed at this time in the shooting deaths.
The deputy remains on administrative leave with pay until the investigation has been completed as protocol mandates, Courson said.
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A Westchester County teenager has filed a federal civil rights lawsuit against three Harrison police officers, accusing one of them of sexually abusing her and all three of forcing her to watch a sex video — in which she performed at age 15 — that they confiscated.
The lawsuit in U.S. District Court in White Plains accuses one officer of groping and fondling her while searching a residence May 17, 2007, following the arrest of a Harrison man on charges of selling and possessing marijuana.
Another lawsuit in federal court referencing the same incident was filed by Joseph Porto. That lawsuit says the man's son, Joseph Porto Jr., had been arrested on drug charges by Harrison police and that the raid took place at Porto's home on Ellsworth Avenue.
The lawsuit filed by the girl, in which she is identified only as "Jane Doe," names Harrison Capt. Anthony Marraccini, Sgt. Edward Lucas and Detective Richard Light as defendants.
The three officers, along with other police, raided the house in search of additional marijuana and a weapon, according to the lawsuit. During the raid, Light rubbed the girl's buttocks and "placed both of his hands on (her) breasts and massaged them," the eight-page lawsuit alleges. The lawsuit accuses Light of acting "solely for the purpose of his own sexual gratification and with the intention of both degrading and sexually abusing" the girl.
Marraccini retrieved a camcorder from a bedroom that contained a sex video of the girl at age 15, the lawsuit said. The girl was 16 at the time of the raid, the suit said. The three officers then forced the girl to watch the 15-minute tape with them, the lawsuit alleges. Light is accused of saying he should beat the girl for making the tape and that he hoped her parents beat her for it.
Harrison police did not return calls last night seeking comment.
Jonathan Lovett, the lawyer who represents Porto and the girl, also did not return calls seeking comment. Joseph Porto did not return a call seeking comment.
The lawsuit claims that there was no reason to search the girl and that she was held in the residence for more than three hours without being able to leave or use her cell phone. At one point, she was told by Light that she was under arrest for tampering with evidence, it is alleged.
The lawsuit filed by Porto says the girl was never charged with a crime. That lawsuit said she was "terrorized" and "became hysterical" during the incident. The Porto lawsuit names the same three officers as the girl's lawsuit, as well as Officer Paul Cuzzapoli, the Harrison Police Department and the town. Porto accuses police of violating his civil rights during the raid.
The girl's lawsuit claims that police "stole the camcorder with the video" and took it to Harrison police headquarters. The three officers "played the video for other members of the department to watch for their amusement, sexual gratification, and to further degrade" the girl, the lawsuit alleges.
The lawsuit alleges there was no reasonable suspicion to believe she had engaged "in any wrong-doing."
The lawsuit names no dollar figure but asks that a jury award her punitive and compensatory damages. It also asks for the return of the camcorder and video so the tape can be destroyed. The Porto lawsuit also names no dollar figure and asks a jury to fix an amount for damages.
Police said last year that they seized marijuana with a street value of $5,500 and a semiautomatic gun with silencer in the Ellsworth Avenue home.
Porto Jr., 20 at the time, and a teen were in Congress Park at 5:30 p.m. May 17, 2007, prepared to complete a sale of a 2-ounce bag of marijuana for $500, Sgt. Lucas said last year. At 8 p.m., police executed a search warrant at the Ellsworth Avenue home. Police said they confiscated four potted marijuana plants, an unloaded Glock semiautomatic handgun with a silencer, ammunition and $5,000, as well as grow lights, a hydration system and books on growing marijuana at home. A knife that police have said Porto Jr. had on him when arrested was confiscated.
Porto Jr. and the teen were charged with second-degree attempted sale of marijuana, a felony. Porto Jr. also was charged with second- and fourth-degree criminal possession of marijuana, a felony and a misdemeanor, and resisting arrest, also a misdemeanor.
Reach Timothy O'Connor at firstname.lastname@example.org or 914-694-3523.
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On Friday night, along a stretch of Broadway in Lorain, Dennis Flores allegedly solicited sex from a police decoy prostitute and was arrested. That is when Flores went from being part of the solution to being part of the problem in Lorain.
Now, the only way Flores can begin to undo the damage he has inflicted on Lorain is to resign as 2nd Ward councilman.
Unfortunately, Flores seems to think that he can get away with just an apology, a nod to counseling and a big dose of denial. Sounding strangely like the pre-resignation Marc Dann, Flores told our reporter yesterday, ''We've got lots of work to do at City Council, and that's what I'm concentrating on. I'll deal with my personal problems as I go along.''
Those words merely demonstrate more poor judgment by Flores.
Soliciting sex on the doorstep of his own ward mocks the oath he took when he joined council. It mocks the words of his own profile on the City Council Web site about being eager to work at ''improving the safety in our neighborhoods and cleaning up Lorain's image...'' It erases all credibility from his campaign talk about being a strong councilman who can fight ''the rise of crime and drug activity that is prevalent in our neighborhoods.''
Soliciting for sex is a crime, and such criminal activities both kill neighborhoods and foster other crimes, including violent crimes and drug abuse.
Flores certainly has personal problems that he needs to conquer, and we wish him well at that task. He also will get his day in court. But by his actions, he already has cut the bonds of trust and duty needed to function as a city official.
Leaders are people, and people are human and have failings, but those who are elected to public office and take an oath are most definitely and deservedly held to a higher standard. Flores has failed to meet that standard, and for the good of the city, he must resign, or be removed from council.
- Except if they are people like Marc Dann, Mark Foley, to name a few.
Perhaps Flores does have more to contribute to the betterment of Lorain, but that is for future years to determine. After Flores has conquered his personal problems, he can run for election and see if the community believes he has what it takes.
But right now, the only positive contribution Flores can make to Lorain is to gracefully step down from City Council so that someone credible and effective can take his seat.
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A former corrections officer, who pleaded guilty to having criminal sexual contact with two inmates and a nurse while on the job in the Hunterdon County Jail, lost a bid to serve his time in the same facility.
Instead, Marc Jenkins, 36, of South Brunswick, ended up in the state prison system after he was given a three-year sentence Friday.
A Department of Corrections spokeswoman confirmed Monday that Jenkins was at the state's Central Reception and Assignment Facility in Trenton.
The spokeswoman, Deirdre Fedkenheuer, said Jenkins will be evaluated for three to six weeks before he is permanently assigned to a state prison. With no mandatory time, Jenkins will be eligible for parole consideration in nine months.
Attorney Paul Uhlik, who represented Jenkins at the sentencing in Flemington, said Judge Roger F. Mahon was advised against recommending his client serve his time at the Hunterdon jail in Flemington.
"Correction officials contacted the judge and advised they didn't think it was a good idea," said Uhlik.
Even if the judge had given the recommendation, the decision would still be up to the state, according to Uhlik.
Another lawyer who represented Jenkins when he accepted a plea deal in March said the former guard feared he was at risk in a state prison because of his law enforcement background. Under the terms of a plea deal, Jenkins was barred from ever working again in law enforcement in New Jersey.
Jenkins admitted he had criminal sexual contact with a nurse while he was employed at the jail in June 2006. He also admitted similar criminal sex acts with two inmates between December 2005 and January 2006.
Jenkins pleaded guilty to three counts each of second-degree official misconduct and fourth-degree criminal sexual contact. He must also pay the victims restitution for counseling and other costs, according to the deal.
In exchange, Hunterdon County Assistant Prosecutor Dawn Solari recommended Jenkins be sentenced as a third-degree offender, which meant he could spend three to five years in state prison. Mahon chose three years at Friday's sentencing.
Fedkenheuer said a review committee decides where to send inmates and could still decide Jenkins should go to a county jail. With his first parole being considered as soon as February, Jenkins could end up staying at the Trenton facility where he was Monday, she said.
Ralph R. Ortega may be reached at email@example.com or 973-951-3816.
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Original Article (See the comments from the vigilante crew)
And Here (See comments)
So, it was harassment after all. I wonder what the people who were defending this person has to say about it now? And yes, what the offender was doing was wrong, but that is no excuse to harass someone, period! Video is available at the site, or below.
A father in Garfield County is drawing attention to sex offenders following a disturbance earlier this month. Travis Metcalf was cited with disorderly conduct, after confronting a known sex offender near a popular children's hang out.
According to the sheriff's department, the community needs to be educated on how to protect their children without violating the rights of others. That was the topic of a special meeting held tonight in Battlement Mesa. Metcalf, who is director of the Colorado Chapter of Communities Against Predators feels laws need to change. He says since the incident, he and his family have been the targets of harassment.
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THE SERIAL MOLESTER known as the Georgia General Assembly did it again, with Gov. Sonny Perdue (Contact) acting as an enabler by not vetoing the measure. Their sex-offender residency restrictions slapped down by the state Supreme Court, the legislators removed the narrow cause of the court verdict and launched the thing once again.
Despite good intentions ruined by overly broad language that some assembly leaders concede is intended to make it impossible for sex offenders to live anywhere in Georgia, this is more than a civil-rights offense. It’s stupid and everyone, except the political grandstanders in an election year, knows it.
It’s bad enough when the “usual suspects” in filing rights lawsuits take the state to court — and win — but when they’re joined in the effort by organizations whose purpose is to end sexual assaults against women and children one would hope the light of day might creep into the dark recesses of some political minds.
THE REVAMPED measure once again bans sex offenders — which include teens who were caught getting oral sex from the young lady now their wife, among other follies — from living, working or loitering within 1,000 feet of where children might gather: schools, churches, parks, gyms, swimming pools or any of the state’s 150,000 school bus stops.
The only thing changed was what the justices struck down in the only limited portion of the first measure to reach them (more are pending, including the church restriction). Now a sex offender who owns his or her home will be allowed to remain there even if a facility where children gather later opens nearby. Such generosity!
Within 24 hours of the governor signing it, a new class-action lawsuit against the revised measure was filed, as well it should have been.
What really should have given legislators second thoughts (assuming they even had first ones on this measure) is the fact that now the groups most concerned with stopping the very thing the legislation purports to address are lining up against it. They argue it only creates the illusion of safety while putting women and children at even greater risk.
“We can scare people into believing that we are doing something, and that does nothing in my mind but endanger people by luring them into a false sense of security,” said Shawn Paul, president and CEO of the Georgia Network to End Sexual Assault, a coalition of sexual assault centers, speaking to the Athens newspaper.
NOTING THAT an estimated 94 percent of sexually abused children are the victims of their parents or other family members, he said the law provides no actual assurance children will be any safer. And, he added, most such assaults take place in the victim’s home, not that of a convicted sex offender nor at a church or school-bus stop.
Moreover, roughly 15,000 Georgians are on the registered sex-offender list, which is a lifetime proposition — meaning no number of decades of good behavior can get one off it and free of the restrictions. The offenses of most were not against children to boot, though this is the fear tool used to gain support for such draconian measures.
Actually, it is the state itself — and the General Assembly — that is at fault for the situation. If it actually believes these 15,000 pose a continuing and constant risk, and some few probably do, then why did it release them from incarceration and back onto the streets? Why are they not in secure treatment facilities, being rehabilitated ... or kept away from doing what they do? It can’t possibly be that state officials and politicians don’t want to spend money on protecting all those children and others they vow are at risk, can it? Do they really believe that fixing the state’s problems involves throwing them outside the state’s borders?
IF THAT’S THE CASE, then the water shortages in Atlanta could be solved by exiling all transplanted Yankees back to their native states, and deteriorating roads could be remedied by the simple measure of banning cars.
It is not only sex offenders, particularly those trying to reform themselves, who deserve better from the legislators. It is all of us.