Monday, September 27, 2010

CNN's Don Lemon Admits To Eddie Long Supporters "I Am A Victim Of A Pedophile"

WI - Wisconsin DA. (Kenneth Kratz) Accused of Sexual Harassment to Resign, Lawyer Says

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Calumet County, Wis., DA. Kenneth Kratz Accused of Using Office to Manipulate Relationships With Women

The Wisconsin district attorney accused of "sexting" women involved in cases he was prosecuting, including one alleged domestic violence victim, will resign from office, the attorney's lawyer said today.

Calumet Country DA Ken Kratz had fought pressure to resign for two weeks since the allegations were first made public but decided to step down before the Oct. 8 court hearing that could have forced his removal, Kratz's attorney Robert Craanen told reporters after he met with his client at a Wisconsin courthouse, according to The Associated Press.

The first of what would become five accusations against Kratz came to light Sept. 15 when the AP published several text messages from Kratz to Stephanie Van Groll, the victim in a domestic violence case Kratz was trying in the fall of 2009. Van Groll, 26, went to police after she received the texts from Kratz, messages in which he called her a "tall, young, hot nymph" and asked whether she is "the kind of girl that likes secret contact with an older married elected DA."

Kratz, 50, admitted to texting Van Groll and offered his "sincere and heartfelt apology" at a news conference days after the news broke. He also said he had already begun psychotherapy to address the "selfishness" and "arrogance" that led to him contact Van Groll.

"My behavior was inappropriate," Kratz said. "I'm embarrassed and ashamed for the choices that I made, and the fault was mine alone."

Kratz's office announced last week he'd gone on leave. Craanen did not immediately return requests for comment on the report.

A second woman came forward early last week to claim similar harassment, saying Kratz had offered to let her attend an autopsy. In an e-mail written to Wisconsin Gov. Jim Doyle, the woman claimed to have met Kratz online in December 2009. On a dinner date, the woman alleged, Kratz divulged to her the details of an ongoing murder investigation in which a woman was believed to have been killed by her boyfriend.

A few days later, a third woman came forward to claim she, too, had been harassed via text message by Kratz.

Maria Ruskiewicz told the AP she met Kratz in 2008 about a previous drug case. Ruskiewicz said that after she left the meeting, she received several texts from Kratz that escalated into sexual harassment.

"The reason ... I'm coming forward is he abuses his power, not only with women, but with women in certain situations who are extremely vulnerable to his authority," Ruskiewicz, 31, an Appleton, Wis., native, told The Associated Press last week.

In the week that followed, another two women leveled similar accusations, ABC New's Wisconsin affiliate WBAY reported.

Craanen denied to the AP the second woman's claim about the autopsy date.

Doyle, the governor, a former district attorney and state attorney general, began proceedings last week to investigate the official complaints, a process that could have concluded with Kratz's forcible removal.

"My reaction was the same as everyone who has worked on these issues over the years, that this is just a terrible violation of trust," he said on "GMA" last week.

The investigation into Kratz's alleged harassment will continue whether he is in office, one investigator told WBAY.

"The announcement that Ken Kratz will resign will have no bearing on their investigation," Keith Sellen, director of Wisconsin's Office of Lawyer Regulation, said. "It will continue to its conclusion, as announced last week, and regardless of whether or not he resigns or surrenders his law license."

FY 2010 Adam Walsh Act Implementation Grants

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IA - Sex offender worker took job no one else wanted

Original Article


By Brian Wellner

Diana Danielson took the job that no one else wanted.

Her office is on the second floor of Davenport’s halfway house at 605 N. Main St., where she counsels convicted sex offenders, whom she calls “clients.”

Her case load is about 30 clients out on parole or probation, supervised release or work release. Clients come to her two to seven times a month. Some of them live in the halfway house, a transition between prison and rejoining society.

She monitors whether her clients are following the rules and gives them a venue to “think out loud,” she said.

She gives them a polygraph test at the first meeting. She wants to know if there were other victims.

She reminds them to keep the battery in their electronic monitoring devices charged. She reminds them of their 10 p.m. curfews.

She hears their issues. A client complained that neighbors spray painted “move away child molester” on his car. Another client said people were printing off his page on the Iowa Sex Offender Registry and distributing it around his home and at his work.

Ninety-five percent of sex offenders sent to prison are going to be released. If the public thinks locking them up is the solution, it isn’t. It’s only going to delay it,” she said.

The reality is sex offenders are living in our community. We have the task of managing them.”

In the late 1980s, as the number of convicted sex offenders rose, the 7th Judicial District created a position to deal solely with that criminal population, Danielson said. She volunteered for the job only after others turned it down.

Danielson has assisted countless clients in 22 years. Her “a-ha” moment came in 1989.

She met an offender who had committed crimes that “people would find very repulsive,” she said.

No case worker wanted to talk to this man, she said.

He was in her office, she recalled, and he told her, “If this is your adult world, you can keep it. Kids treat me better than this.”

Of course they do, she said. “Kids are wonderful, aren’t they? They love you, they admire you, they look up to you, they make you feel important and you matter."

And what were we doing with him? He wanted nothing to do with us."

When we push them away from the adult world, we’re pushing them toward children, and we really need to stop doing that.”
- This may be true to some extent, but not all sex offenders are pedophiles and/or child molesters either.  So making a blanket statement like that, is just helping keep the fear and disinformation alive.

Danielson said Iowa’s sex offender registry had good intentions when it was launched in 1995 as a way to inform the public as to where a convicted sex offender resides. But she’s not sure why only sex offenders are singled out.

So what about a drunk driver? What about a drug dealer,” she said.

She said there haven’t been studies done to show how a registry lowers recidivism — the rate at which a person continues to reoffend — among sex offenders.
- Sure there has, you just have to look and not assume one hasn't been done.

Bottom line, you’re a parent, supervise your children,” she said.

There’s less than 10 percent recidivism among sex offenders who have successfully gone through treatment, she said. The rate can go as high as 18 percent if a sex offender does not do well in treatment, she said.

That compares to an average 33.9 percent recidivism statewide for all crimes.

It is the persons most likely to abuse your children are those who have not yet been identified as a sex offender,” Danielson said.

People think the registry says these are the people I have to watch and no one else, that’s foolish,” she said.

More than 90 percent of victims of a sex offense know their abuser, she added.

Danielson has the task of helping sex offenders find a place to live. The state does not allow sex offenders to reside within 2,000 feet of a school or registered day care facility.

Offenders who have been unable to find housing because of the 2,000-foot rule are allowed to register “homeless.” Detective Peter Bawden of the Scott County Sheriff’s Office typically meets with offenders who register homeless on a weekly basis, he said.

I discuss with the registrant where they have been staying and ensure they are not anywhere they would be excluded from being in accordance with the law,” he said.

As of Sept. 22, Scott County had a total of 321 registered sex offenders.

This information is always changing with new registrations daily,” Bawden said.

An authorized group for convicted sex offenders meets every Wednesday at the halfway house. Danielson said the group is growing too big because of an increasing population of sex offenders in Scott County and state funding cuts.

Sex offenders find inspiration hearing about each other’s struggles and successes, Danielson said.

For someone who commits a sex offense, there’s a lot of shame, a lot of guilt,” she said.

These people want to put their lives back together. We put them with others who, like them, suffer humiliation and torment."

They watch how these others have put their lives together. It helps them.”