Thursday, September 17, 2009

Constitution Day

Constitution Day Web Site

Constitution Day (or Citizenship Day) is an American federal observance that recognizes the ratification of the United States Constitution and those who have become U.S. citizens. It is observed on September 17, the day the U.S. Constitutional Convention signed the Constitution in 1787.

The law establishing the holiday was created in 2004 with the passage of an amendment by Senator Robert Byrd to the Omnibus spending bill of 2004. Before this law was enacted, the holiday was known as "Citizenship Day". In addition to renaming the holiday "Constitution Day and Citizenship Day," the act mandates that all publicly funded educational institutions provide educational programming on the history of the American Constitution on that day. In May 2005, the United States Department of Education announced the enactment of this law and that it would apply to any school receiving federal funds of any kind. This holiday is not observed by granting time off work for federal employees.

When Constitution Day falls on a weekend or on another holiday, schools and other institutions observe the holiday on an adjacent weekday. This was the case in 2005, when Constitution Day was generally observed on Friday, September 16 and 2006 when the holiday was observed on Monday, September 18.

Universities and colleges nationwide have created "U.S. Constitution and Citizenship Weeks" in order to meet the requirements of the law. For example, the Milwaukee School of Engineering (MSOE) has created a celebration week that includes "Constitution Trivia Contests", distribution of free copies of the U.S. Constitution, a campus & community fair (in which volunteer and community groups can share information with students), a web page with facts and links related to the Constitution and history of the United States. MSOE has also distributed thousands of free "Presidential quote" t-shirts to all students on campus.


"The mood and temper of the public in regard to the treatment of crime and criminals is one of the most unfailing tests of a civilization. We must have a desire to rehabilitate into the world of industry, all those who have paid their dues in the hard coinage of punishment." - Winston Churchill (United States Constitution)

© 2006-2009 Sex Offender Issues , All Rights Reserved


FL - Sex offender Epstein won’t talk about his manhood

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09/17/2009

Just don’t ask millionaire Palm Beach sex offender Jeffrey Epstein about his privates.

Local attorney Spencer Kuvin did during a deposition Sept. 2, and Epstein walked out — 100 seconds after it started. And it was all caught on the video above.

Epstein, 56, did answer the first question: “What is your name?

But he balked at the second: “Is it true that . . . you have an egg-shaped penis?

After an objection from his attorney, Mike Pike, and another attempt from Kuvin, Epstein took off his microphone and left.

It cost the Wall Street prodigy Epstein: He was fined $800 by the West Palm Beach court currently hearing civil lawsuits filed by women whom Epstein paid for sex when they were underage.

While Epstein claims he never even met several of his accusers, they painted a not-so-pretty picture of Epstein’s junk to prove he exposed himself.

It absolutely was an important question,” said Kuvin. “If he claims to have never met them, then we should know whether the victim is telling the truth.”

Kuvin represents a suburban girl who, at 15, was enticed to visit Epstein’s Palm Beach home under the pretense she would receive $200 to massage the man. But the massage allegedly turned into much more until the girl allegedly walked out in disgust. She is now in college.

The deposition has been reset for Oct. 8, and Epstein should expect the same question.

Epstein was released from a county correction camp this summer after serving 13 months of an 18-month sentence for his guilty plea on two felony prostitution charges.

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"The mood and temper of the public in regard to the treatment of crime and criminals is one of the most unfailing tests of a civilization. We must have a desire to rehabilitate into the world of industry, all those who have paid their dues in the hard coinage of punishment." - Winston Churchill (United States Constitution)

© 2006-2009 Sex Offender Issues , All Rights Reserved


TX - Wrongly Convicted in Texas Paid $80G for Each Year Spent in Prison Under New State Law

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Looks like Texas will eventually go broke due to putting innocent people behind bars.

09/05/2009

DALLAS - _____'s journey from prison to prosperity is about to culminate in $1.8 million, and he knows just how to spend it: on a house with three bedrooms, stainless steel kitchen appliances and a washer and dryer.

"I'll let my girlfriend pick out the rest," said _____, who was exonerated last year based on DNA evidence after spending nearly 23 years in prison for rape and robbery.

He and other exonerees in Texas, which leads the nation in freeing the wrongly convicted, soon will become instant millionaires under a new state law that took effect this week.

Exonerees will get $80,000 for each year they spent behind bars. The compensation also includes lifetime annuity payments that for most of the wrongly convicted are worth between $40,000 and $50,000 a year — making it by far the nation's most generous package.

"I'm nervous and excited," said _____, 50. "It's something I never had, this amount of money. I didn't have any money — period."

His payday for his imprisonment — a time he described as "a nightmare," "hell" and "slavery" — should come by mid-November after the state's 45-day processing period.

Exonerees also receive an array of social services, including job training, tuition credits and access to medical and dental treatment. Though 27 other states have some form of compensation law for the wrongly convicted, none comes close to offering the social services and money Texas provides.

The annuity payments are especially popular among exonerees, who acknowledge their lack of experience in managing personal finances. A social worker who meets with the exonerees is setting them up with financial advisers and has led discussions alerting them to swindlers.

The annuities are "a way to guarantee these guys ... payments for life as long as they follow the law," said Kevin Glasheen, a Lubbock attorney representing a dozen exonerees.

Two who served about 26 years in prison for rape will receive lump sums of about $2 million apiece. Another, _____, who spent about 24 years in prison for sexual assault and burglary, will get about $1.9 million.

The biggest compensation package will likely go to _____, who spent more than 27 years in prison for a 1980 murder that DNA testing later showed he did not commit. He eventually could receive nearly $2.2 million but first needs a writ from the state's Court of Criminal Appeals or a pardon from the governor.

_____ and the others are among 38 DNA exonerees in Texas, according to the Innocence Project, a New York legal center that specializes in overturning wrongful convictions. Dallas County alone has 21 cases in which a judge overturned guilty verdicts based on DNA evidence, though prosecutors plan to retry one of those.

_____, who was wrongly convicted of rape, said the money will allow him some peace of mind after more than 26 years in prison.

"It will bring me some independence," he said. "Other people have had a lot of control over my life."

_____ and other exonerees already have begun rebuilding their lives. Several plan to start businesses, saying they don't mind working but want to be their own bosses. Others, such as _____, don't intend to work and hope to make their money last a lifetime.

Some exonerees have gotten married and another is about to. _____ is taking college courses. _____ became a first-time father at 49.

"That's something I never thought I'd be able to do," he said. "No amount of money can replace the time we've lost."

The drumbeat of DNA exonerations caused lawmakers this year to increase the compensation for the wrongly convicted, which had been $50,000 for each year of prison. Glasheen, the attorney, advised his clients to drop their federal civil rights lawsuits and then led the lobbying efforts for the bill.

Besides the lump sum and the monthly annuity payments, the bill includes 120 hours of paid tuition at a public college. It also gives exonerees an additional $25,000 for each year they spent on parole or as registered sex offenders.

No other state has such a provision, according to the Innocence Project.

Exonerees who collected lump sum payments under the old compensation law are ineligible for the new lump sums but will receive the annuities. Whether the money will be subject to taxes remains unsettled, Glasheen said.

The monthly payments are expected to be a lifeline for exonerees such as _____, 53, who received nearly $390,000 in compensation — minus federal taxes — but squandered it by, as he said, "living large." He ended up homeless, spending his nights in a tattered sleeping bag behind a liquor store.

But after getting help from fellow exonerees and social workers, _____ now lives in an apartment and soon will have a steady income.

_____'s story is a cautionary tale for the other exonerees, who meet monthly and lately have been discussing the baggage that comes with the money.

_____ said he's been approached by "family, friends and strangers, too."

"It takes two or three seconds before they ask me how much money, or when do I get the money," he said. "Everyone has the perfect business venture for you."

Though appropriately wary, the exonerees say they are excited about having money in the bank.

"You're locked up so long and then you get out with nothing," _____ said. "With this, you might be able to live a normal life, knowing you don't have to worry about being out on the streets."


"The mood and temper of the public in regard to the treatment of crime and criminals is one of the most unfailing tests of a civilization. We must have a desire to rehabilitate into the world of industry, all those who have paid their dues in the hard coinage of punishment." - Winston Churchill (United States Constitution)

© 2006-2009 Sex Offender Issues , All Rights Reserved


FL - Judge rules Miami-Dade sex-offender residency law is valid

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Related Story

09/17/2009

By JULIE BROWN

The American Civil Liberties Union of Florida (Contact) failed to persuade a Miami-Dade circuit court judge to undo strict local ordinances that forced a group of convicted sex offenders to live under the Julia Tuttle Causeway.

In the suit, filed against Miami-Dade County, the ACLU argued Thursday the county's ordinance banning sex predators from living within 2,500 feet of schools conflicts with a state statute that sets the boundary at 1,000 feet.

Essentially, the ACLU claimed there was an "implied preemption" by the Legislature that local municipalities' ordinances would fall in line with the state's law.

But Miami-Dade Attorney Tom Logue countered that, if that were true, the Legislature would have clearly inserted the preemption into the statute.

In fact, Logue pointed out, over the past few years, various lawmakers have tried and failed to change the sex offender residency restrictions to make local ordinances more consistent with state law.

That effort -- and its repeated failure to pass snuff in the Legislature -- demonstrates there was nothing in the original statute -- even intended -- that would prohibit municipalities from drawing up their own restrictions.

The ACLU, however, implored Judge Pedro P. Echarte Jr. to consider one intent expressed in the statute: that the law was designed to protect children from convicted sex offenders and predators.

They and others have long claimed that by forcing the molesters to abide by the 2,500-foot rule -- which has been passed across South Florida -- it makes it impossible for the predators to find a decent place to live. By doing so, it fails to protect children because it forces the molesters to disappear and abscond so law enforcement and the public can't track them at all.

"This is a terrible policy and cannot be what the Legislature intended," said Maria Kayanan, who argued the ACLU case on behalf of two residents who lived under the bridge.

She said the recent efforts by state lawmakers shows they realize the state's 2005 statue needs to be fixed.

"The statute could not have intended to push sex offenders under a bridge," she told the judge.

Logue, in turn, told the judge the ACLU's arguments rely upon a lot of "mind reading." In the end, Encharte agreed.

"The county's ordinance is a valid exercise of its local power," he said.

The ACLU, which already anticipated an appeal, said they would take their case to a higher court.

"This is a classic story of unintended consequences," said Howard Simon, executive director of the ACLU of Florida.

Ron Book, a state lobbyist who fought for the stringent local ordinances, applauded the judge's decision, saying the ACLU's argument was fundamentally flawed.

"There is no provision in the law that prohibits local municipalities from enacting their own ordinances," he said.

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"The mood and temper of the public in regard to the treatment of crime and criminals is one of the most unfailing tests of a civilization. We must have a desire to rehabilitate into the world of industry, all those who have paid their dues in the hard coinage of punishment." - Winston Churchill (United States Constitution)

© 2006-2009 Sex Offender Issues , All Rights Reserved


NC - Sex offender law toughened

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09/17/2009

By Drew Brooks

Sex offenders who shirk registration laws by leaving the state may discover they have U.S. Marshals (PDF) on their tail.

The federal agency is ramping up enforcement of a 2006 law that directs them to track down offenders on the run. Marshals, unlike local police, can cross jurisdiction lines to find fugitives.

"They're not off the radar," said U.S. Marshal Clyde Cook Jr., who oversees a 44-county district of eastern North Carolina. "We're coming, and it's just a question of when."

On Wednesday, a Cumberland County man was the first in the district to be sentenced under the law, called the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act. It's named for the murdered son of John Walsh, a victims advocate and host of "America's Most Wanted."

_____, 38, was sentenced to 34 months in federal prison followed by 10 years of supervised release, according to Deputy U.S. Marshal Brandon Taylor.

_____ had been charged with failing to maintain and update his status as a sex offender, as required by the Adam Walsh law.

Cook said that the sentence should be taken as a "warning shot across the bow,'' and that his office plans to bring similar cases to the attention of U.S. Attorney George E.B. Holding in Raleigh.

"This particular prosecution in the 44-county eastern district is the beginning of an even more intensive federal effort, aimed at bringing to justice other non-compliant sex offenders who have violated the Adam Wash act in addition to state laws," said Cook.

The act targets sex offenders who move from state to state without notifying the required authorities, or who otherwise flaunt registry laws.

_____, who is originally from Wade, has been required to register as a sex offender since a 1998 conviction on two counts of taking indecent liberties with a child. The charges stemmed from incidents involving a 14-year-old girl, according to published reports.

But starting in fall 2007, law enforcement could no longer find _____. Warrants were issued that year by Cumberland County sheriff's deputies charging him with failure to register as a sex offender.

Prior to the federal law that involves U.S. Marshals, finding sex offenders who vanished was time consuming and unreliable, Cook said. The U.S. Marshals Service can go anywhere, though, with a considerable network of deputies.

Finding people is the specialty of the marshal, Cook said.

"We're pretty good at it," he said.

The Marshal Service Violent Fugitive Task Force became involved in the _____ case in January, initiating a nationwide search. Taylor said _____ had been "skating under the radar" and was traced to Washington state and Maryland.

_____ was arrested in St. Pauls on April 10. Taylor said he was back in Cumberland County visiting people and was picked up after a traffic stop. He pleaded guilty to his charge on June 9 in federal court.

Taylor said there's no doubt that _____ was trying to avoid law enforcement.

"The problem with sex offenders is that they tend to re-offend at a very high rate," Cook said. "When they disappear, there's considerable cause for concern."
- More BS.  Many, many studies out there, show that sex offenders have the LOWEST recidivism of any other criminal, except murderers, yet they continue to use some old sound bite from the 80's.

After sentencing, _____ was brought to Cumberland County to face state charges for failing to register as a sex offender.

Those arrested by U.S. Marshals have the potential to face both federal and state prosecution, Cook said.

"It's a potential double whammy."


"The mood and temper of the public in regard to the treatment of crime and criminals is one of the most unfailing tests of a civilization. We must have a desire to rehabilitate into the world of industry, all those who have paid their dues in the hard coinage of punishment." - Winston Churchill (United States Constitution)

© 2006-2009 Sex Offender Issues , All Rights Reserved


NM - More proof that most sex crimes committed today, are by unknown offenders, and the victim knows the offender

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"The mood and temper of the public in regard to the treatment of crime and criminals is one of the most unfailing tests of a civilization. We must have a desire to rehabilitate into the world of industry, all those who have paid their dues in the hard coinage of punishment." - Winston Churchill (United States Constitution)

© 2006-2009 Sex Offender Issues , All Rights Reserved


WA - Woman accused of threatening to claim rape charged with extortion

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09/16/2009

King County prosecutors have filed second-degree extortion charges against a Renton woman accused of threatening to report a former lover as a rapist if he didn't pay her $2,000.

In court documents, Mercer Island police contend that Jeanine Ann Gessner began harassing the man after he broke a date with her to attend a pre-season Seahawks game on Aug. 22.

An instant message exchange between Gessner and the man included in court filings shows a marked shift in her attitude toward him following the broken date. Initially loving, the writer whom prosecutors allege to be Gessner ultimately sent the man dozens of threatening messages.

When the man said he would take legal action if the harassment continued, prosecutors allege Gessner began threatening she would make a false police report accusing the man of raping her.

"Let's go coward," Gessner allegedly wrote. "Who are the police going to believe? You or me? You are out of your league(.) Don't start something that you will loose(sic)."

Prosecutors allege Gessner went on to demand $2,000 for her silence.

In charging documents, prosecutors note that she was convicted of third-degree malicious mischief in a separate April domestic violence incident involving another victim, and is the subject of two anti-harassment orders filed by two other men.

Gessner was arrested Sept. 3 and later released.


"The mood and temper of the public in regard to the treatment of crime and criminals is one of the most unfailing tests of a civilization. We must have a desire to rehabilitate into the world of industry, all those who have paid their dues in the hard coinage of punishment." - Winston Churchill (United States Constitution)

© 2006-2009 Sex Offender Issues , All Rights Reserved


MI - Woman jailed for false rape report

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09/09/2009

By Jenny Lancour

ESCANABA - A Gladstone woman who said she was brutally sexually assaulted last year was sentenced Tuesday to four months in Delta County Jail on two counts of attempted filing of a false report of a felony.

Amanda Chatterton Miller, 27, claimed she was sexually assaulted by a stranger on Feb. 27, 2008, in Brampton Township. She told police in the hospital emergency room she was kidnapped, beaten and raped, and also a victim of sodomy.

Following an intensive two-day hunt for the suspect, Miller confessed to police she had lied about being assaulted by a man who never existed. She told police she and her husband, Gilbert Tryan, made up the story so he wouldn't get in trouble.

During her sentencing in Delta County Circuit Court Tuesday, Miller declined to make a statement. Her attorney, Russ Hall, did speak on her behalf.

"This is a situation where basically a person has been battered during most of her married life," Hall said. "Her first reaction was to make a false statement to protect her husband. She doesn't have a criminal record."
- So is her husband the one who beat her up?  If so, was he arrested?

Circuit Court Judge Stephen Davis told Miller, "You have gone from being a victim of domestic violence to being a perpetrator of public crime." Davis said her false police report resulted in an investigation of smoke.

In addition to the four months in jail, Davis ordered Miller to 18 months probation on each of the two counts of attempted filing of a false police report, to be served concurrently. She was also ordered to pay restitution to be determined, $526 in fines and costs, and attorney fees to be determined.
- Pay restitution to whom?  The man apparently doesn't exist!

During Miller's plea hearing in July, she agreed to make a sworn truthful statement so authorities could do a follow-up investigation, which may include additional arrests. In exchange for the plea agreement, the prosecution agreed to dismiss four counts against the defendant.

Troopers arrested Miller on March 31 after waiting on DNA evidence for more than a year. She was originally charged with four counts of filing false police reports for criminal sexual conduct, kidnapping, assault with intent to commit sexual penetration, and attempted sodomy.


"The mood and temper of the public in regard to the treatment of crime and criminals is one of the most unfailing tests of a civilization. We must have a desire to rehabilitate into the world of industry, all those who have paid their dues in the hard coinage of punishment." - Winston Churchill (United States Constitution)

© 2006-2009 Sex Offender Issues , All Rights Reserved


IN - UPDATE: ISU Recanted Rape Case

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09/16/2009

By Jon Swaner

The Indiana State University student who said she was raped and recanted her story could get a unique sentence.

Wednesday morning, 19-year-old Erin Conley pleaded guilty to False Informing.

The Vigo County Prosecutor will ask the Victim's Assistance office if Conley can do community service with them.
- Community service?  She should get what the victim would have received if found guilty!

A deputy prosecutor told us they want Conley to work with actual crime victims in hopes this teaches her a valuable lesson.

It's also something they've never done before.
- So! She could have ruined someone's life.

Conley will be sentenced September 25th.

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"The mood and temper of the public in regard to the treatment of crime and criminals is one of the most unfailing tests of a civilization. We must have a desire to rehabilitate into the world of industry, all those who have paid their dues in the hard coinage of punishment." - Winston Churchill (United States Constitution)

© 2006-2009 Sex Offender Issues , All Rights Reserved


NY - Hofstra student recants gang rape allegations

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And so the news media lists the falsely accused names, but not the lady who made the false accusations? Why not? I think all men should be aware of her! Well I have found this article, which mentions her name (Danmell Ndonye).


09/16/2009

NEW YORK (CNN) -- Charges have been dropped against four men accused of raping an 18-year-old student at Hofstra University after the woman recanted her allegations, prosecutors said.

A judge dismissed all charges Wednesday night and ordered the release of the four men -- _____, 19; _____, 19; _____, 20; and _____, 21; all of the New York metropolitan area, according to Nassau County, New York, District Attorney Kathleen Rice.

They had been arrested, arraigned and jailed, with bail set at $500,000 each. Each was facing five counts of first-degree rape.

"Late this evening, during the continuation of the Nassau County Police Department's investigation of the allegation, and under questioning by my office's chief trial attorney and chief sex crimes prosecutor, the alleged victim of the sexual assault admitted that the encounter that took place early Sunday morning was consensual," Rice said.

She said her office has launched a criminal investigation into the statements and reports given by the woman.

The student had told Nassau County police that she had been lured from a club, forced into a men's bathroom at a university dormitory, bound and assaulted.

The woman then called the university public safety office, which alerted local police.

The reported rape shocked the Hofstra University community. The university had announced that it was increasing safety patrols on campus, as well as establishing a support hotline for students and parents.

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"The mood and temper of the public in regard to the treatment of crime and criminals is one of the most unfailing tests of a civilization. We must have a desire to rehabilitate into the world of industry, all those who have paid their dues in the hard coinage of punishment." - Winston Churchill (United States Constitution)

© 2006-2009 Sex Offender Issues , All Rights Reserved


GA - Wild Adventures theme park doesn't like ex-offenders

This was posted elsewhere:

_____ gave me a Season Pass to Wild Adventures Theme park in Valdosta Ga. We went and they take your picture and info so you will get your admittance card for the season and then we watched the 38 Special concert. About 3 weeks later I get a certified letter in the mail from security at wild adventures along with a check for the refund amount of a season pass. They told me I'm not welcomed or allowed back in the theme park for life.

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"The mood and temper of the public in regard to the treatment of crime and criminals is one of the most unfailing tests of a civilization. We must have a desire to rehabilitate into the world of industry, all those who have paid their dues in the hard coinage of punishment." - Winston Churchill (United States Constitution)

© 2006-2009 Sex Offender Issues , All Rights Reserved