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VT Sex Offender Wins Legal Challenge

September 9, 2009

Vermont Public Radio : Sex Offender Wins Legal Challenge.

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Host: A judge has thrown out a Barre City ordinance limiting where sex offenders can live. That decision now will be used as legal ammunition in a similar case in Rutland. VPR’s John Dillon has more:

Dillon: The American Civil Liberties Union of Vermont brought the case on behalf of Christopher Hagan. Eight years ago, Hagan pleaded guilty to a sex offense involving a 15 year old girl. When he moved this spring with his family to an apartment in Barre, he learned that he would be violating a city ordinance that banned him from living within 1,000 feet of a playground. But the legal arguments in this case were more narrow. The ACLU said that the legislature never allowed the city to pass zoning ordinances restricting where sex offenders live.

The ACLU says that municipal ordinances like Barre’s give the public a false sense of security since most sex offenses against children are committed by relatives, not strangers.

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