Archive for October 1, 2009

Man Arrested for Living with His Own Children

October 1, 2009 Comments off

RepublicanAmerican (Connecticut) : Sex offender’s violation: Living with his own children.

LITCHFIELD — A former freshman Torrington High School baseball coach convicted in 2003 of having sex with minors was back in court this week, accused of violating the terms of his probation by living with his own children. There are no new allegations of sexual contact. Officials ordered him to leave his home where his children live, for their safety. He failed to do in a timely fashion, State’s Attorney David Shepack said. As a result, Torres was charged with violating probation.

KY Supreme Court Strikes Down Sex Offender Law

October 1, 2009 Comments off : Kentucky Supreme Court strikes down sex offender law.

The Supreme Court of Kentucky has ruled that a law limiting where registered sex offenders can live cannot apply to those who committed offenses before July 12, 2006, the day the law was implemented. The law prohibits sex offenders from living within 1,000 feet of playgrounds, daycare centers and schools, and changed how the distance is measured.

The court, in a decision dated Oct. 1, said the law is punitive in nature and violates the ex post facto clause in the U.S. Constitution, which prohibits states from passing laws that increase punishment for old crimes.

In October 2006, authorities in Fayette County began knocking on doors and arresting sex offenders who were in violation of the law. At the time, there were 256 sex offenders in Fayette County and 180 were expected to move. Most of them were living in older, urban neighborhoods inside New Circle Road. Downtown Lexington was virtually off limits. Several registered sex offenders owned homes for years and were upset about being forced to move because of a new law.

Sex offenders across the state took their concerns to court only to receive varying opinions from judges.

*Read the Kentucky Supreme Court ruling (PDF)
Full ruling in Kentucky v. Baker, No. 2007-SC-000347-CI (Ky. Oct. 1, 2009) (available here)

Sex-offender Registration Status Appeals

October 1, 2009 Comments off (Rhode Island) : Sex-offender status appeals.

Rhode Island State law allows convicted sex offenders to appeal the risk level assigned to them by the Sex Offender Board of Review. The two offenders’ lawyers argued the cases Tuesday afternoon before Magistrate Gordon M. Smith. If they are not satisfied with the magistrate’s decision, they can appeal to a Superior Court judge and, if desired, seek Supreme Court review. Until that appeal is settled, the public will not, by law, be notified of the offenders’ residence.

“It’s not a politically correct thing to say, but even convicted sex offenders have rights,” Healey (an Attorney General official) said.

At least one Sex Offender Board of Review member, JoAnne Waite, said any delay in assigning levels during the appeal process keeps an offender in limbo and it could affect where they live and their jobs. “They are trying to start their lives, but in a sense they can’t,” said Waite, who works with sex-offender groups. She said she knows of offenders who have awaited a level for more than a year.

This is one of the primary flaws in the SORNA/ Adam Walsh Act/Ohio Senate Bill 10 : Tier levels are assigned according to the crime of conviction, without a court hearing and without regard to the likelihood of an individual’s risk level. Not only is this unconstitutional (Due Process), but it floods the registries with large numbers of offenders, many of whom are at low risk of re-offending.