Friday, March 12, 2010

NM - Ex-cop (David Maes) pleaded no-contest to rape (No prison time, and won't have to register, as usual!)

Original Article

And another cop, commits a sex crime, and gets a slap on the wrist. Why do we have one set of laws for cops, politicians and celebrities, and another set for the average citizen? He raped this woman, and gets probation only, no prison time and not on the sex offender registry.

03/12/2010

By Crystal Gutierrez

ALBUQUERQUE - A former Albuquerque police officer pleaded no-contest to rape and false-imprisonment charges on Friday and was sentenced to probation.

David Maes apologized to the court for his actions in a 2007 case that forced him to resign from the Albuquerque Police Department and move out of town.

Police said in October 2007 Sylvia Cordova was fleeing from police in a stolen vehicle when she crashed into a tree. Maes was assigned to guard her at the hospital.

Cordova claimed he fondled her and then raped her twice in an Albuquerque ballpark before taking her to jail. On Friday she asked the judge to lock him up.

District Court Judge Pat Murdoch said it would be a harsh sentence for an ex-cop.
- Yeah, so what? It's a harsh sentence for anybody, and if this were not a cop, you'd not be saying that!

The impact and the punishment that he would receive in prison would be more than anybody else going to prison for the same allegations,” Murdoch said.
- So what? Cops and those in authority positions, should be held to a higher standard, yet it's the reverse!

Under the terms of the deal, the judge could have given him 4 1/2 years in prison.

Moments later the judge sentenced Maes to five years on probation, a sentence Cordova said she expected since the man she said raped her once wore a police badge.

I guess I can say I’m satisfied with the verdict," Cordova said. "I believe everybody deserves a second chance. The judge knows what's best."
- Except if it's not a cop or famous person, right? Funny how this "second chance" never comes out when it's Joe or Jane Q. Public!

However, even the judge acknowledged it would have been a difficult case for both parties. The defense said Cordova was a known prostitute before and after the rape accusations were made and Maes was in a police uniform.

In the end Mr. Maes acknowledges it's not appropriate for a police officer to have sex with somebody in their custody,” defense attorney Joseph Riggs said.
- And so instead of punishing him, and holding him to a higher standard, you are just slapping him on the wrist! BAD BOY!!!!

Riggs said the former officer’s plea does not mean he admits his guilt. He said Maes just wants to move on with his life.

He doesn't admit that he raped her," Riggs said. "He admits that he had sex with her."

As part of the plea deal Maes does not have to register as a sex offender, and once he completes his probation the conviction will be wiped off his record.
- How many average citizens get suck a lucky break?  0%!!!

Maes resigned from APD in 2007 and moved out of state.

Cordova filed a civil lawsuit against Maes in 2009. The city of Albuquerque settled the suit and will pay her $575,000. The city paid because Maes was on on-duty officer at the time of the rape making the department was liable.

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"The best way to get a bad law repealed is to enforce it strictly." - Abraham Lincoln


WI - State To Wipe Out Local Sex Offender Ordinances?

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"The best way to get a bad law repealed is to enforce it strictly." - Abraham Lincoln


CA - Community Responds To Murdered Teens

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"The best way to get a bad law repealed is to enforce it strictly." - Abraham Lincoln


WI - Roberts passes sex offender residency ordinance

Original Article

03/12/2010

By Julia Ybarra-Young

It is official: Roberts will not allow any sex offenders to move into its Village limits. At least, not any one who hasn’t lived in Roberts before.

Ordinance 2010-1 describes safety zones for sex offenders and was initiated by Police Chief Dan Burgess earlier this year. He was concerned that since Hudson, North Hudson, Hammond and Baldwin all had adopted similar ordinance – and other local municipalities were considering adopting the same – Roberts might be left vulnerable to any sex offenders that wanted to move into the western Wisconsin area.

At the board’s request, Burgess adapted some of the existing ordinances to fit the Village of Roberts’ situation, such as restricting access within 200 feet of the Hazel Mackin library or any area it operates on.

However, Burgess said the only snag that has developed is a proposed state statute out of Milwaukee that would give the state control of sex offender zones, negating the local municipalities’ ordinances.

I spoke with a representative who co-sponsored the bill and he said that local ordinances would be grandfathered in,” Burgess said.

Mike O’Keefe, from the Department of Corrections, told the board that there are 71 sex offenders living in St. Croix County. If they are not on supervision, and they stay compliant with the registry, such as letting them know where they are living, where they work, what their vehicle registration is, etc., they are legally allowed to live wherever they want.

We haven’t had sex offenders re-offend sexually,” O’Keefe said. “We catch them mid-stream, through drinking, tip-offs from other people, etc.

He did say that they should be restricted from posing as Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny and from handing out trick-or-treat candy at their homes on Halloween. He cited an instance when a registered sex offender – had his lights on and a stream of children were lining up to get candy from his home. He said that part of the onus is on the parents to know if there are any sex offenders living in their neighborhoods.

Burgess said there is already a sex offender living downtown, but he would be grandfathered in; this ordinance is more to prevent non-Roberts residents who are offenders from moving in.

One of the board members asked how the Village would address a situation where the mobile home park occupants – which include two sex offenders – would be told to seek shelter in the school gymnasium in the event of severe storms.

I don’t know if officers could identify offenders that quickly in a rush of people,” Burgess said. “I don’t think that is feasible.”

The board members discussed giving the school office personnel 8x10 photos of the sex offenders, but it was rejected because the office personnel would not always be present during an emergency after school hours.

I think it’s the parents’ responsibility to get their kids together in an emergency,” said Terry Dull, board member.

A suggestion to refuse sex offenders emergency shelter was rejected because it was argued that if the Village allowed them to live there, they are bound to offer them emergency shelter.

Katy Kapaun, board member, eventually suggested that the Village board take a pro-active stance and approach the known sex offenders with this new ordinance and ask them if they have any plans as to emergency situations.

If they are sheltering their own children, we need to address this ahead of time,” Kapaun said.

The ordinance also states a committee of several group members, such as police chief, Village board member, citizen member and others, would be activated should a registered sex offender ask to live near a child-safe zone. If a sex offender wanted to attend the Good Neighbor Days parade, for example, the police chief has the authority to make the call without the committee.

You aren’t excluding these people,” O’Keefe said, “you are just giving them reasonable conditions to live under.

The ordinance was approved unanimously.


"The best way to get a bad law repealed is to enforce it strictly." - Abraham Lincoln


NY - Saratoga County sheriff's deputy (Donald Harder III) found guilty of sexual abuse, misconduct

Original Article

As usual, another cop, another slap on the wrist! No wonder so many people want to be cops, you can get a way with anything, apparently!

03/12/2010

BALLSTON SPADonald Harder III, the Saratoga County Sheriff's deputy accused of sexually abusing several women while on duty and in uniform, pleaded guilty to a six-count indictment today in Saratoga County Court.

The top charge was for menacing, a felony. He also pleaded guilty to four counts of third-degree sexual abuse, and one count of official misconduct, all misdemeanors.

Harder will be sentenced to six months in Saratoga County Jail and five years probation. He will not have to register as a sex offender because all the victims were over 18 years of age.

However, he will have to give a DNA sample to the state Division of Criminal Justice Services.

As a condition of his sentencing, he will be forced to resign from the sheriff's department.

Harder was accused of forcing four women to engage in sexual acts with him while on duty and in uniform. The alleged crimes occurred between June 2007 and August 2009.

Harder was arrested at the end of his shift on Aug. 10, 2009 after a woman filed a complaint alleging he had forced her to perform a sexual act while assisting in a civil matter that day.





Original Article

03/12/2010

BALLSTON SPA -- Saratoga County Sheriff's Deputy Donald Harder III admitted Thursday he had sexual contact with four different women while on the job last summer.

Harder, 29, pleaded guilty Thursday to menacing, a felony; four counts of misdemeanor sexual abuse; and official misconduct. Harder is expected to serve six months in county jail after his sentencing hearing May 13, District Attorney James Murphy III said. He will also resign from his job.

Harder's lawyer, Tucker Stanclift, said his client accepts responsibility for his crimes and he is "sorry for violating the trust of the community and his family."
- So why are we not holding this person up to a higher standard? Instead he's getting a slap on the wrist while the average citizen who did the same, gets burned!

Stanclift said it was important to Harder to avoid a plea that would require him to register as a sex offender because he has young children. "Sex offender" makes people think "pedophile," Stanclift said, and Harder's victims were all over 18. Harder worked as a sheriff's deputy for three years before he was arrested Aug. 11 and immediately suspended without pay.
- Who gives a flying f---?  Like everyone else who is not a cop, they did the crime, and are forced to do the time, so why is this jerk getting off SUPER EASY?  How many times has the above been brought up in court for anyone who is not a cop?  Zero!!!

Harder made demands of a sexual nature on a woman in Edinburg on Aug. 11 while he was standing next to his patrol car wearing his uniform and gun. She complied, saying she was afraid Harder would hurt her if she did not.

After the victim complained to police, three more women came forward and said Harder abused them between June and August of last year.
- So, this man rapes or sexually assaults 4 women, and is getting a way with it, pretty much!

Murphy said Harder's crimes "violate the trust we all place in police officers." But he added, "We should remember that despite Harder's criminal conduct, most all of the men and women in law enforcement work hard to make sure that laws are enforced and upheld."

The actions of Harder should not taint all of the outstanding police officers that are ethical and abide by their oath to protect and serve."


"The best way to get a bad law repealed is to enforce it strictly." - Abraham Lincoln


NJ - New Jersey has not complied with federal sex offender law

Original Article

03/12/2010

By DAVID SCHLENDORF

The Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act of 2006 set forth uniform standards for tracking sex offenders in all 50 states. As the July 2009 implementation deadline approached, only one state, Ohio, had complied.

The U.S. attorney general signed an across-the-board extension until July 2010 for all states, including New Jersey, to bring their sex offender reporting systems into conformity with federal requirements. Failure to do so would subject the states to loss of 10 percent of their allocations under Title I, Part E, Subpart 1 of the Omnibus Crime Control and Safe Streets Act.

When it comes to sex offender laws, the nation looks to New Jersey for direction. That's because New Jersey's Megan's Law was the first such law in the nation, a model for other states and the federal government. But with the federal mandate looming, the underpinnings for the AWCPSA sex offender registry provisions seem to be eroding.

A federally funded study conducted by Rutgers University and the New Jersey Department of Corrections, released last February, found that Megan's Law does not effectively deter sex crimes, but does impose a tremendous cost upon taxpayers – $5.1 million in New Jersey in 2007. Earlier studies reached the same conclusion as the 2009 Rutgers study.

As reported by NJ.com, critics of the studies, such as the mother of Megan Kanka, the murdered little girl after whom Megan's law was named, point out that the studies addressed the recidivism rates of offenders. The critics contend that stopping recidivism was never the purpose of Megan's Law, which instead was designed as an information tool for parents.

When it comes to the AWCPSA-required expansion of its sex offender registry, New Jersey faces some of the same issues as other states, including the required inclusion of children convicted of sex crimes in the federal database and application of notification requirements to crimes committed before registration was mandated.

The state's public defenders expressed concern in 2007 that an expanded sex offender registry in New Jersey will impede the efforts of convicted sex offenders to maintain employment and housing and may increase the likelihood of sex offenders and their family members suffering harassment.

The public defenders' association notes that the federal rules would expand the audience receiving reports of sex offenders in a jurisdiction to include housing authorities, social service agencies, background check providers and volunteer organizations where contact with children is possible. The inclusion of employer name and address in the public database can be expected to lead to job losses, the public defenders said.

The federal law requires changes to New Jersey law in other areas as well, including the classes of people who must register and the crimes for which they must register. Under New Jersey law, for example, exhibitionism and possession of kiddie porn are not covered offenses, whereas they are under the federal statute.

JusticePolicy.org points out that for New Jersey, as for every other state, the initial cost of AWCPSA compliance outweighs its potential loss of federal funds for noncompliance. New Jersey's first-year outlay of $14,088,206 would vastly exceed the $516,071 it stands to lose if it fails to implement AWCPSA.

If you have questions about New Jersey laws regarding sex offenders, the sex offender registry or the new federal requirements, please speak with an experienced criminal defense attorney in your area for more information.

David Schlendorf is a lawyer and his firm is based out of Toms River, N.J.


"The best way to get a bad law repealed is to enforce it strictly." - Abraham Lincoln


GA - Can sex offenders be requires to provide all their on-line information to law enforcement?



This local article from Georgia, headlined "Judge mulls law on sex offender online obligations," reports on notable constitutional litigation concerning post-offense restrictions on sex offenders. Here are details from the story:

A federal judge on Tuesday began weighing arguments for and against a new Georgia law that requires sex offenders to hand over Internet passwords, screen names and e-mail addresses to law enforcement officials in the name of public safety.

Attorneys for convicted sex offender Terrence White urged U.S. District Judge Bill Duffey to block the law because it infringes on White's constitutional rights. State attorneys countered that the 2009 law gives authorities a much-needed tool to make sure registered sex offenders don't strike again. Duffey did not rule immediately, but he said the case centers on a "fundamental issue in our culture." "Children do have to be protected, but that also has to be balanced with constitutional protections," he said. "And I never take those lightly."...

White, who is challenging the law in Georgia, was convicted in 1986 of enticing a child for indecent purposes. His attorney, Nicole Iannarone, contended that the law is written so broadly that it could allow authorities access to his online retail accounts, bank information and anything else considered "interactive online forums."

She argued that an overzealous sheriff could charge her client or another sex offender with violating the registry's rules if he or she refuses to turn in their Delta.com account information. "The statute is over-broad, and it doesn't have anything to do with the mission of protecting children."

State attorney Paige Boorman, however, countered that the measure "is relevant and necessary to protect the public." She said online screen names and passwords are "tools for law enforcement" that will make it easier for them to investigate and prevent another sex crime before it's too late.

Duffey peppered both attorneys with questions, but focused on the balance between public safety and free speech. The addresses of sex offenders in Georgia are already posted online to alert neighbors to their whereabouts, the judge said. "I'm not aware of a fundamental right to live somewhere anonymously," Iannarone replied. "It is a fundamental right to speak anonymously."


"The best way to get a bad law repealed is to enforce it strictly." - Abraham Lincoln


UT - Lawmaker (Republican Kevin Garn): I went skinny-dipping with teen

Original Article

03/12/2010

Utah House majority leader admits paying $150,000 in hush money

SALT LAKE CITY - Utah's House majority leader said late Thursday he paid a woman $150,000 to keep silent about going nude "hot-tubbing" with her when she was minor a quarter century ago.

In a statement on the House floor, Republican Kevin Garn, 55, said he paid her to keep quiet about the incident during his unsuccessful U.S. congressional bid in 2002, but did not have sexual contact with her.

Garn said the woman, who he didn't identify on the floor, has been calling news outlets and that he wanted to be open about the incident that occurred when he was 28 years old, before any stories appeared.

A woman identifying herself as Cheryl Maher told The Salt Lake Tribune that she and Garn were in a hot tub nude when she was 15 years old.

"This has just been a nightmare for me," Maher said in a telephone interview with the newspaper from New Hampshire. "I just want to tell the truth because it's part of the healing process for me."
- What the man did, was wrong, but this lady sounds like a Gold Digger to me!

'Spur of the moment'
Garn told The Associated Press early Friday that Maher was the woman and that they were nude during a "spur of the moment" skinny-dip. He said she worked for him in a warehouse.

"We sat there and that was it," Garn said.

Maher, who now lives in New Hampshire, also contacted Garn's hometown newspaper, the Ogden Standard-Examiner.

The Associated Press could not immediately reach Maher.

Garn's legislative future in highly conservative Utah with its strong Mormon influence is uncertain, but GOP Gov. Gary Herbert's (Contact) spokeswoman, Angie Welling, said Herbert would not be asking for Garn's resignation.

Garn spoke on last night of the legislative session as a tearful House Speaker Dave Clark and their colleagues looked on.

Thunderous applause
House members gave him thunderous applause for his honesty and embraced him. As majority leader, Garn was the House's point man on a series of legislative ethics bills this year that were designed to restore the public's faith in the Legislature after recent accusations of bribery.

"While this payment felt like extortion, I also felt like I should take her word that the money would help her heal. She agreed to keep this 25-year-old incident confidential. Now that this issue is coming up again, it is apparent to me that this payment was also a mistake," Garn said.

"Although we did not have any sexual contact, it was still clearly inappropriate — and it was my fault," Garn said.

"I apologize to you, my colleagues, for any shame this brings to the Utah State Legislature. I have tried my best to serve my constituents in a way that brings honor to them and makes this great state better than the way I found it. I hope to continue to do that," Garn said.

The Utah Senate's former majority leader, Sheldon Killpack, resigned earlier this year after being arrested for driving under the influence.

"Although Rep. Garn made some bad decisions, first 25 years ago and then again in 2002, they do not diminish the good work he has done for the state of Utah," Welling said in a statement to the AP.

Filing for re-election begins Friday.



Kevin Garn Statement [Full Text]

"Twenty five years ago I made a mistake that has now come back to haunt me. I was 28-yrs old and I foolishly went hot-tubbing with a young woman nearly half my age. Although we did not have any sexual contact, it was still clearly inappropriate -- and it was my fault.

One of the consequences of that decision was the negative impact it had on this young person's life. Years later, when I was running for Congress, she decided to bring this incident to the attention of the media. Shortly thereafter, my wife and I met with her, and at her demand, I paid her $150,000. While this payment felt like extortion, I also felt like I should take her word that the money would help her heal. She agreed to keep this 25-year-old incident confidential. Now that this issue is coming up again, it is apparent to me that this payment was also a mistake.

Today, she went to the press and reported all of these events. There will be a story. I expect to suffer public humiliation and embarrassment, but I also want you to know that I cannot allow one foolish mistake to continue to shadow my life. At this point, I would rather be open and honest about this than continue to live in fear. Some lessons are hard to learn. This is something I should have done back in 2002. But I was scared. I did not want to be publicly judged by one of my life's worst decisions.

I told my wife about this incident years ago, as well as my children. I may not deserve their forgiveness, but they have given it. My primary concern at this point is that my wife and the rest of my family know how much I love them. I am sorry for this incident. And I am sorry I ever responded to the financial demands.

I also wish to publicly apologize to this young lady for this incident. And I apologize to you, my colleagues, for any shame this brings to the Utah State Legislature. I have tried my best to serve my constituents in a way that brings honor to them and makes this great State better than the way I found it. I hope to continue to do that.

Thank you.
"

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"The best way to get a bad law repealed is to enforce it strictly." - Abraham Lincoln