Friday, October 26, 2012

CA - The Commentariat - Anthony Zurcher & Diane Dimond talk about Halloween sex offender issues

Video Description: (Audio Source)
Anthony talks with Creators columnist and veteran TV crime reporter Diane Dimond about whether police programs to contact and target registered sex offenders in the days leading up to Halloween constitute good public-safety policy or a needless violation of civil liberties.

NC - Sex Offenders Change Their Identities To Avoid Law Enforcement, Get Jobs

Original Article


By Faith Abubey

There are now more than 14,000 sex offenders living in North Carolina. That number is a tally of just those who are on the books with the state's sex offender registery.

Nationally, there are 570,000 registered offenders.
- This just goes to show you, "reporters" do not know what they are talking about, and do not do any real investigative work.  Based on what the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children say, there are just over 722,000 offenders (PDF) in this country, so you are about 152,000 off, but, does it really make a difference?  This article is the usual fear-mongering crap!

Even more troubling is that a U.S. Department of Justice funded research has revealed 16% of the offenders nationwide are beating the system by stealing identities to avoid being tracked. Some of the abusers are hiding from the law in plain sight. They are out working jobs their criminal records disqualifies them from. However, few people, including law enforcement agencies, know because they aren't aware of the tactic.
- Really?  I've searched their site and do not see this "study!"  If anyone finds it, let me know.  I do know of one article, but it's not very convincing either, here.

One month on the job, and Corporal Brian Henderson with the Guilford County Sex Offender Registry has met more sex offenders than he ever wanted to know.

"We do sweeps, we bring in 40-50 officers, we give them all about 10 files and say, 'go out and knock on these doors,' and in one morning we'll touch 700 sex offenders," said Corporal Henderson, commenting on the 700 sex offenders registered in Gulford County.
- Careful, you "touch" someone the wrong way and you'll be on the registry.

Regular compliance checks have kept a majority of the 14,000 North Carolina sex offenders on the books.

"There are victims for every one of these folks that I come out here for," said Corporal Henderson. "That's what I'm doing this for. To make sure there's not another victim."

A new study, paid for by the Department of Justice, reveals a startling statistic. One in six sex offenders is re-inventing themself.
- I don't buy it!  Show me the study.

What does that mean? Some sex offenders are using fake birthdates, stealing social security numbers and making up addresses to avoid being tracked.

Researchers estimate there are 92,000 sex offenders among us, changing their identity.
- I don't like estimates or educated guesses, I like facts.

News 2's Faith Abubey called investigators and deputies in the Triad, and most said they'd never heard of "identity stealing sex offenders." The researchers say that's not surprising, considering how new this trend is. What's more problematic? They don't have the resources to stay on top of it.
- Exactly, they've never heard about it, but they say "it's a new trend," and again, I don't buy it.  Just sounds like a way to plead for more money.

The Department of Justice is now working with the researchers to find out if there's something they can do to stay a step ahead of sex offenders who change their identities.

Until then - they suggest we all get familiar with the online sex offender registry.
- So if what you say is true, then how will checking an online shaming hit-list do any good?

The researchers are working on breaking down the numbers state-by-state. When News 2 gets the North Carolina numbers, we'll let you know.
- I'm sure you will, but, I'm sure we'll never hear anymore about it.

TX - Pasadena residents fearful after reports of a sexual predator

Original Article


By Rucks Russell

PASADENA — Fears of a sexual predator have given homeowners a disturbing reality check in a Pasadena neighborhood.

I don’t feel safe at all,” said Linda Cox, who’s lived in the area for 45 years. “I feel like I could get out of my car and someone could just grab me and take me and they could do anything.”
- The world is a dangerous place, but living in total fear is not going to do you any good, except worry you over nothing!

Many neighbors are scared because of what happened to a female postal worker who was delivering mail Wednesday afternoon.

According to police, she was assaulted by a man who groped and fondled her. The woman fought back and her attacker eventually ran away.

The incident occurred in the 800 block of Yorkshire Road, about half of a mile from an apartment complex where a similar attack occurred in early October.

In that assault, a man attempted to grope a 10-year-old girl. She also fought back and managed to get away.

Authorities weren’t sure if the incidents were connected. No one has been arrested.

It’s very disturbing,” said Johnny Garza, who has a teenage daughter. “I don’t like that at all. I don’t feel comfortable that someone is in the neighborhood doing that.”

Anyone with information is urged to contact Pasadena police.

NM - Where are the Results? NMSC Study Fails to Deliver

Original Article

Reform Sex Offender Laws, Inc., Calls N.M. Sentencing Commission Report a Sham

In September, 2012, after a six-year wait, the New Mexico Sentencing Commission published and distributed a study of sex offender recidivism in New Mexico. (1) At least, RSOL thinks that's what it is about.

Where are the charts?” asks Lloyd Swartz, president of the N.M. affiliate of RSOL. “Where are the graphs? Where are the percentages? How is anyone supposed to understand what this is saying? Most of it has nothing to do with New Mexico.” Indeed, more than three pages of the four-page report do not. They instead provide information on various other studies around the country and even in Canada. Its only chart does NOT include New Mexico.

I’ve never seen a recidivism report that didn’t use percentages,” comments Swartz. “You have to wade through all that stuff that has nothing to do with New Mexico, then wade through the paragraphs about the New Mexico study until you get to some numbers, and then you have to do the math to know what you have.”

Paralegal Larry Neely did the math. “Seven out of 126 from the prison cohort were returned to prison for a repeat sexual offense; that’s 5.5%. Of the 79 in the probation cohort, only one out of the 79 total had committed a new sexual offense. That is a fraction over 1%.” (1, pp. 2,3)

This is outrageous,” Neely continues. “Our sex offender recidivism is low, very much in line with that found in other studies in other states. The Sentencing Commission obscures that fact by deliberately focusing on all these other studies, especially one widely-discredited study that shows higher recidivism for some populations but has nothing to do with our New Mexico study. The date from our study is being downplayed in the report and ignored in the media in favor of the higher numbers which don’t even apply. This is nothing more than political pandering.”

Dr. Jill Levenson, professor at Lynn University and author of many sexual offense related studies and publications, when asked to review the study, also expressed surprise that the newspaper articles dealing with the N.M. Commission’s report didn’t even cite the results of their N.M. recidivism study.

The NMSC, media, and at least one lawmaker have put nearly all their attention, says Swartz, on "one study done by a group from Canada (2) who specifically said that their results should not be used to formulate policy and which has been rejected as poorly controlled by the rest of the research community. (3) But that is what the media and politicians see when they look at the report.” (4)

Even more egregious,” adds Neely, who has extensive knowledge of sentencing and supervision practices as they apply to sex offenders, “is the veiled suggestion in the Commission’s follow-up statement that some of the subjects from the study may have re-offended elsewhere, making the rate higher. (5) This is nonsense. Convicted sex offenders on parole or probation are virtually never given permission to leave the state. The Commission does not say that any of the study group is ‘missing.’ If one or two have been given permission to move elsewhere, the Commission would have had no difficulty at all tracking them. Everything in that report is designed as a scare tactic and as a springboard to a demand for additional restrictions on registrants and more stringent laws and monitoring.”

Brenda Jones, Executive Director of National RSOL, agrees there should be graphs and percentages, and she set about creating them. “It took me about an hour,” she said. “It would seem like the NMSC could have taken an extra hour and produced something that has some meaning for the average citizen.” (6)

Brenda Jones, Executive Director, RSOL