Monday, February 14, 2011

AL - Federal appeals court says former Alabama district attorney (John Pilati) must register as sex offender

Original Article


By Kent Faulk

A federal appeals court today ordered that a former Alabama district attorney will have to register as a sex offender when he is released from prison next month.

Former Franklin County District Attorney John Pilati was sentenced in March 2008 to serve 42 months in prison for fondling five men -- ages 17 to 20 years old -- during searches while he was serving as prosecutor in that northwest Alabama county. He was convicted on five misdemeanor civil rights counts.

U.S. Magistrate Judge John Ott also ordered that Pilati register as a sex offender when he was released.

Pilati is set to be released from the Federal Correctional Institution in Seagoville, Texas, on March 24, according to Federal Bureau of Prisons records.

Pilati had appealed his conviction, sentence, and requirement that he register as a sex offender, according to the U.S. 11th Circuit Court of Appeals opinion.

The court ruled that Pilati waived or abandoned all issues related to his conviction because he not raised them on appeal at the district court level first, leaving only the question of whether Pilati had to register as a sex offender, according to the opinion.

Pilati argued the judge had erred in requiring him to register as a sex offender because he was not convicted of a qualifying offense and because he was not charged in the indictment against him or found guilty of a sex offense against a minor. The appeals court ruled that Pilati had not raised that question in an appeal to the lower district court first and that Ott had correctly determined Pilati had engaged in conduct that by its nature was a sex offense against a minor.

The appeals court had issued its opinion in December, but not until today did it issue its final mandate to the district court to enforce their ruling.

Calls to Pilati's trial attorney and appeals attorney were not returned today.

Pilati has vehemently denied the accusations.

At the time of Pilati's sentencing his attorney, Bruce Gardner of Huntsville, had said the claims against Pilati were made out of revenge by the men who had accused him.

Pilati also had served six months in federal prison after pleading guilty in 2004 to lying to FBI agents who were investigating him on allegations he extorted criminal defendants for favorable treatment.

GA - Drivers licences may soon identify some convicted criminals

Original Article


By Tina Terry

AUGUSTA - Georgia lawmakers are considering a bill designed to protect police officers from criminals.

The law would require certain convicted felons to have a code placed on their drivers license. The idea is to help prepare police officers during routine traffic stops.

The bill would target those who've committed the so-called 'seven deadly sins'. Things like murder, rape, and aggravated child molestation.
- So, how would having murder on a license help? By the time the cop gets to the car, it could be too late. By the way, the Nazi's loved marking people as well.

Some people have mixed feelings about the proposal, saying not everyone should be able to identify criminals.

A house panel unanimously approved the legislation Thursday. We will keep you posted on it's progress.

SC - Sex Offender Residency Laws are now enforceable with OffenderWatch

And like usual, their presentation they are using shows the bogus "50% of sex offenders re-offend!" See here for more on Offender Watch.

The pursuit of safety - Sex offender policy in the United States

Original Article


By Tracy Velázquez

While high-profile sex crimes routinely grab headlines, the question of how well current sex offense laws are working rarely has been examined. This report provides an overview of sex offense policies, identifying key trends and examining what is known about the effectiveness of different approaches at meeting their aims. Following a brief history of sex offender laws and a discussion of some of the current issues in the field, the report examines six significant trends in recent sex offender legislation: stricter sentencing, enhanced registration requirements, expanded community notification, more residency restrictions, the spread of electronic monitoring, and the growth of civil commitment of convicted sex offenders.

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