Thursday, May 1, 2014

CA - Sacramento County sued over sex offender ordinance

Original Article


By Sam Stanton

Sacramento County became the latest governmental entity Wednesday to be sued over an ordinance limiting the movements of registered sex offenders near parks and other public places, but the practical effect of the suit may be negligible.

Attorney Janice Bellucci (Website) filed the suit in U.S. District Court in Sacramento on behalf of _____, a San Luis Obispo man who is a registered sex offender and has sued other municipalities over their ordinances limiting where sex offenders may go in public.

The suit challenges a 2006 county ordinance that forbids offenders from being within 300 feet of schools, parks, video arcades and other areas where children may be present. However, the practical effect of the suit is unclear because of earlier court rulings in Southern California that invalidated similar ordinances.

An appellate court in those cases found that such ordinances are invalid and leaves the state’s Jessica’s Law, passed by voters in 2006, as the main enforcement tool over paroled sex offenders. That measure prevents sex offenders on parole from living within 2,000 feet of schools and parks.

The Orange County district attorney had been pushing for additional local ordinances in Southern California communities, but the appeals court found them invalid. That finding was appealed to the state Supreme Court, which refused to hear the matter.

Sacramento County District Attorney Jan Scully’s office also provided information to area communities on such ordinances.

Our goal was to support local ordinances that kept the children of our community safe by restricting registered sex offenders’ presence at parks and public places regularly frequented by children, consistent with the intent of Jessica’s Law and the constitution,” Scully’s office said in an emailed statement. “Unfortunately, our Legislature did not clarify Jessica’s Law with respect to this issue so the responsibility was left to local governments.”

With the potential of all or most of these ordinances being rescinded in light of the court’s ruling, the Legislature should pass appropriate laws that will complement Jessica’s Law and the intent of California voters and protect our children from easy access by sex offenders.”


NJ45143112 said...

Several times the bill has been presented to the state and it failed every time (even when it had enough votes to pass)...
Perhaps the governor didn't get involved before or it wasn't politically expedient at the time...
One hopes it gets a fair hearing this time...

NJ45143112 said...

So, Ms. Schroeder reads tea leaves to determine what is legal and what isn't? Seems to me that she's smoking them too if she really believes that depriving a significant portion of the population of their basic rights is legal!
She's nothing more than a mindless mouthpiece parroting the nonsense that bonehead Tony Rackaukus is spouting!
As for this Pierson guy, what a moron!
"We're just not being understood. All we want is to protect children. Every sex offender wants to ogle children so we have to keep them away. If they want to go somewhere, they can get permission from the sheriff..."
Are you kidding?!
You are an attorney and you don't recognize that you are blatantly walking on civil rights?! You completely ignore the issue of family, friends and employment! You completely ignore the logistical difficulty in enforcing such laws! You completely ignore the cost to taxpayers when your ordinance is challenged in court!
Spend less time reading your paycheck and more time studying the law and we will all be much happier!

Mark said...

"We're just not being understood. All we want is to protect children.
Every sex offender wants to ogle children so we have to keep them away.
If they want to go somewhere, they can get permission from the
sheriff..." This statement is precisely what I have described as sex offender "OBJECTIFICATION," and because this mind set is well in place, it is a prime example of the ubiquitous mental illness that has permeated Amerika. Such an easy statement from a narrow minded mentally ill citizen. Regrettably, this is the notion from across the country.. We wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against powers, principalities, rulers of wickedness in high places. . . .