Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Research review II: Sexual predator controversies

Original Article

Following up on last week’s research review, here are some new articles from the ever-controversial practice niche of sexually violent predator cases:


Once a jury is empaneled to decide whether someone with a prior sex offense conviction is so dangerous to the public that he should be civilly detained, the verdict is a foregone conclusion. Dangerousness is presumed based on the prior conviction, rather than having to be proven.

Researchers Nicholas Scurich and Daniel Krauss confirmed this by giving jury-eligible citizens varying degrees of information in a Sexually Violent Predator (SVP) case and asking them to vote. Some mock jurors were told only that the person had a prior conviction for a sex offense. Others were also given information that the person had a mental abnormality that made him likely to engage in future acts of sexual aggression.

It mattered not a whit. The mock jurors voted to civilly commit at the same rate, whether or not they had heard evidence of current dangerousness.

The mere fact that a respondent had been referred for an SVP proceeding was sufficient for a majority of participants to authorize commitment,’ the researchers found. “These findings raise concerns about whether the constitutionally required due process occurs in SVP commitment proceedings.”

No surprise, really. In this practice niche more than others, fear and hype often overshadow reason. Sex offenders are not the most appealing human beings, and no one wants to shoulder the responsibility of voting to release someone who could go out and rape or molest again.


ieee said...

The court made the right call on this.

What the defendant was saying was illegally searched was the metadata in the picture, not his home. What the court said was that when he put the picture on the internet, the entire contents of the picture, including the metadata, was okay to be examined by anyone, including law enforcement. The court was not saying that uploading a picture gave law enforcment a right to search your home.

Mark said...

"It mattered not a whit. The mock jurors voted to civilly commit at the
same rate, whether or not they had heard evidence of current
dangerousness." "Pervs," "monsters," "rapist(s)," "sexually dangerous," "A prior conviction," "sex beasts," "baby rapers," "sexually violent offense/offenders," "John Walsh;" these are the real walls that have been created by the media, the courts, the neighborhoods of America, the police, "victim" advocates lying and distorting facts and figures for personal gain, people in libraries using library computers to "look-up" sex offenders, Congress buying into the lies, the states enacting sex offender registration so they will not lose tons of money, Cynical? NO, truthful yes. How does sex offenders collectively break the mental and spiritual cycle of this type of mind corruption that has permeated the entire planet? Personally, I am at a loss to come with any persuasive solution. Any suggestions?

Mark said...

Assuming arguendo, if the defendant DID NOT consent to a search, in spite of so-called downloaded materials in violation of the commerce clause, the FBI should have, and were required to obtain a bona fide search warrant while keeping the premises under surveillance. If this scenario did not occur, then Judge Costa has the courage of a non testicular eunuch. And if the defendant's lawyers, if so under court rules of Texas, should and must move for an interlocutory appeal IMMEDIATELY for encroachment of the Fourth Amendment. I can tell you about Texas, it is an "old boy network." So this defendant better have an attorney worth his salt.

Sex Offender Issues said...

You are right, we misread that and thanks for pointing it out.

Anonymous said...

If he posted the stuff online, he lost pretty much any right to privacy about his pictures. I don't think there was any problem with the guy's arrest.