Lyons wants to limit sex offenders

Lyons wants to limit sex offenders

There are 46 comments on the KUSA Denver story from Apr 3, 2007, titled Lyons wants to limit sex offenders. In it, KUSA Denver reports that:

" The town of Lyons may adopt an ordinance to try and keep convicted sex offenders away from places children go.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at KUSA Denver.

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Sex Offenders

San Jose, CA

#4 Apr 4, 2007
I think that people need to know that not all sex offenders are rapists! My son would up convicted of a sex offense for turning 18 when he was seeing a girl who was 13 going on 14. He was immature for his age and in and out of alternative schools due to ADHD and ODD (oppositional defiance disorder). The girl's mother liked him and was ok with them being together. However a friend of the mother's did not like the relationship and turned them in. He got convicted of a class 4 felony and has to register for 10 years, after which he can request to be released from registering. He is by no means a rapist and would never hurt anyone. His relationship with the girl started when he was 17 and then he happened to turn 18; the girl was 2 months shy of being 14. Not that I would advise kids to have girlfriends this young, but years ago when I was in high school it was not that uncommon. Society needs to be aware that not all sex offenders are violent and they should be more prone to watching out for the people labeled 'sexually violent predators'- those are the people to watch out for!!! They are shown on the websites for most counties. But I also believe that the laws need to be changed as in my son's case, not all counties in Colorado would have even charged him in this instance. The laws vary county by county!
HELD BY REQUEST

Orange, CT

#5 Apr 4, 2007
THIS SEX OFFENDER THING HAS GOTTEN TOO OUT OF HAND. THE PUBLIC NEEDS TO READ UP AND LEARN A FEW THINGS. A LOT OF CONVICTED PEOPLE ARE INNOCENT, BUT BECAUSE OF OUR STUCK UP AND PRISSY LIFESTYLE IN THE COUNTRY, YOU CAN BE CONVICTED OF SEXUAL ASSULT ON A CHILD IF ONE PERSON IS 18 AND THE OTHER IS 17. GO AHEAD AND LAUGH, BUT IT IS HAPPENING IN THIS COUNTRY. YOU CAN BE CONVICTED ON JUST HEARSAY, NO PHYSICAL EVIDENCE, JUST SOMEONE GETTING MAD AND ACCUSING. MURDERERS DONT HAVE TO REGISTER ONCE THEY GET OUT OF PRISON AND THEY ARE 10 TIMES MORE DANGEROUS THEN A SEX OFFENDER. I WOULD MUCH RATHER LIVE NEXT TO A SEX OFFENDER THAN A MURDERER, BUT THAT INFORMATION IS NOT MADE PUBLIC. EVERYONE HAS A RIGHT TO GET A JOB AND LIVE A NORMAL LIFE, BUT BECAUSE OF ALL THE RESTRAINTS PUT ON SEX OFFENDERS, THESE PEOPLE DONT GET THAT RIGHT. BUT, OH NO, LET THE DRUG DEALERS, MURDERERS, THIEFS OUT OF PRISON AND DONT MONITOR THEM. FOR ALL THOSE PEOPLE THAT WANT TO MONITOR THE SEX OFFENDERS, MAKE SURE YOU TAKE YOU LOOK INTO YOUR OWN CLOSET, I AM SURE A LOT OF THEM HAVE SOME KIND OF SEXUAL ENHANCHMENTS HIDDEN IN THE BACK.
Broken Hearted Parent

San Jose, CA

#6 Apr 4, 2007
People need to know that some of our counties (namely the 18th Judicial District - serving Arapahoe and Douglas counties) are convicting 'teens' as sex offenders and giving them prison terms for sometimes doing nothing more than having boyfriend/girlfriend relationships. Sure they may try to give them an 'adjudicated' sentence with requirements to fulfill, but if they can't (due to mental health issues), then they wind up in prison for no more reason than for caring for someone. Other counties in Colorado won't give them an adjudicated sentence, but just a warning of the what the law are these days. Not all 'convicted' sex offenders are rapists who are a danger around your children. Anyone who has any question can contact me and I will tell you the instance with my son! He got caught in this because he was seeing someone who was 13 (2 months shy of being 14) when he was 17 and then turned 18. It's awful!!! Not he has to register for 10 years and then apply to be taken off the registration. This is wrong!!!

Lyons is wrong in their attitude - but then the news media does nothing to help stop the attention placed on these people -I think that they need to let the public know that not all people who have to register are 'dangerous' to society. The people society needs to be wary of are the one's labeled 'sexually violent predators'- those are the rapists, and muliple offenders who DO need to be watched more closely.

HDHale417@yahoo.com
Education

Fort Collins, CO

#7 Apr 4, 2007
Why not do the same for murders, child abusers, and violent people, drunk drivers…….. yes sex offenders need to pay the price for the crimes …..

I'm all in favor of doing things to stop crimes against children, but let's use our money and efforts to do something that will actually prevent crimes rather than something that will make us feel like something is being done.

Let's make sure we prosecute these men (and jail them for a long long time); let's make sure we educate young people to come forward. Let's separate high risk (likely to repeat) sex offenders from one-time sex offenders.

Don't get me wrong – I’m not in favor of child molesters and i'm all too familiar with the experience of rape. I've spent a good chunk of my life trying to stop violence against women and girls

This is a controversial issue growing across the nation: Should registered sex offenders be allowed to live and be able to move near schools or day cares, and is enforcing such a restriction legal?

A handful of states have passed "child safety zone" laws restricting where sex offenders can live. But some of those states also face legal challenges to the statutes. Alabama was the first state to pass restrictions on sex offenders in 1996. Under Alabama law, offenders cannot work or live within 2,000 feet of a school or day care. Other states also prohibit what sex offenders can do within a certain distance of a school or day care ranging from living and working to volunteering and even traveling. In Iowa and Tennessee, the constitutionality of laws outlining where sex offenders can live is being challenged. Likewise, an ordinance in Albuquerque preventing sex offenders from living near schools was also put on hold earlier this year after the ACLU filed suit claiming it violated the civil rights of sex offenders.

Assistant Utah Attorney General Craig Barlow concurred that trying to restrict a person because of history raises serious constitutional questions.
"You can't prohibit drug offenders from living near pharmacies or alcoholics from living near taverns or kleptomaniacs from living near people who have stuff," he said. If someone tried to place such restrictions on sex offenders they would probably only be able to live in Utah's most rural communities, he said. "The whole notion of where do they live begs the question of population. Any inhabited places are probably in some distance to a church, school or day care," Barlow said. "The problem is, how do you get (a statute) that is practical or constitutional? It would have to be both. If you make it so draconian,(sex offenders) stop registering all together and then the value is gone."

Probation or parole board across the nation considers each offender's history individually when setting conditions for parole, because no two offenders present the same level of risk to public safety. "It's about the situation," ……."Not all sex offenders are the predators and pathological personalities people assume they are. After 15 years on the board I recognize that there are murderers and then there are murderers. It's the same with sex offenses. There are sex offenders and then there are sex offenders." Says one parole board member.
Education cont 2

Fort Collins, CO

#8 Apr 4, 2007
Common misperceptionsDr. Michael Stevens, director of Psychopharmacology Research for Valley Mental Health, agrees. Sex offenders do primarily fall into two broad categories which include different kinds of predatory behaviors. Those who prey randomly on "unknown" victims represent a much smaller portion of the sex offender population than those who are "domestic sexual offenders," such as biological relatives, he said. The mere presence of a sex offender within a neighborhood does not necessarily mean then that the person presents a significant threat. "Actually if you do a Google-like search, and you read very reputable news sources, you'll find some confusion in the distinction between those (offender) groups," Stevens said. "That uniformly tends to reinforce the public lack of knowledge and the public's tendency to think that a sexual offender represents a single syndrome."

In making its decisions about releasing a sex offender to parole, the board also considers whether the offender has successfully completed treatment, board administrator John Green said. It is generally true that most offenders do not get a parole date until such treatment is successfully completed, Green said. Those who refuse treatment typically stay incarcerated for longer periods of time.

Statistics show that treatment does have an impact on a sex offender's behavior, Corrections spokesman Ford said. Between 1991 and 2001, only 18.9 percent of offenders who completed sex offender treatment returned to prison — those returns were for parole violations, but not for new sex offenses, Ford said. "That's contrary to what the media would have people believe," Ford said. "Those recidivism numbers are significantly less than those for other kinds of offenses." In Robert's case, Brienholt said AP&P actually checked out his house before he moved in to make sure it was in an appropriate location. If a school or day care is a couple of streets over, he said that's OK. "The closest analogy I can make is an alcoholic. There's a lot of alcoholics out there who go the rest of their lives without touching another drink," he said. "Through proper treatment and supervision we feel they can become a minimal risk to the community." Exactly what to do with convicted sex offenders once they return to the community has been the focus of growing national attention.

Before 1994, only a handful of states required offenders to register their addresses with police. Now all 50 states do, as does the District of Columbia.Those lists have focused attention on where the sex offenders live, and as of this summer, 17 states had imposed residency requirements for them, according to research by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. This month, Californians voted to bar sex offenders from living within 2,000 feet of schools or parks -- though a federal judge quickly blocked that provision. In Iowa, which in 2002 became one of the first states to impose residency restrictions, police and prosecutors have united in opposition to the law, saying that it drives offenders underground and that there is "no demonstrated protective effect," according to a statement by the Iowa County Attorneys Association, which represents prosecutors. "The law was well-intentioned, but we don't see any evidence of a connection between where a person lives and where they might offend," said Corwin R. Ritchie, executive director of the group. Enforcing the law consumes lots of law enforcement time, he said, and leads some offenders to list interstate rest stops or Wal-Mart parking lots as their addresses. "Our concern is that these laws may give a false sense of security," said Carolyn Atwell-Davis, director of legislative affairs for the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. "We're not aware of any evidence that residency restrictions have prevented a child from being victimized."
Education

Fort Collins, CO

#9 Apr 4, 2007
Why not do the same for murders, child abusers, and violent people, drunk drivers…….. yes sex offenders need to pay the price for the crimes …..

I'm all in favor of doing things to stop crimes against children, but let's use our money and efforts to do something that will actually prevent crimes rather than something that will make us feel like something is being done.

Let's make sure we prosecute these men (and jail them for a long long time); let's make sure we educate young people to come forward. Let's separate high risk (likely to repeat) sex offenders from one-time sex offenders.

Don't get me wrong – I’m not in favor of child molesters and i'm all too familiar with the experience of rape. I've spent a good chunk of my life trying to stop violence against women and girls

This is a controversial issue growing across the nation: Should registered sex offenders be allowed to live and be able to move near schools or day cares, and is enforcing such a restriction legal?

A handful of states have passed "child safety zone" laws restricting where sex offenders can live. But some of those states also face legal challenges to the statutes. Alabama was the first state to pass restrictions on sex offenders in 1996. Under Alabama law, offenders cannot work or live within 2,000 feet of a school or day care. Other states also prohibit what sex offenders can do within a certain distance of a school or day care ranging from living and working to volunteering and even traveling. In Iowa and Tennessee, the constitutionality of laws outlining where sex offenders can live is being challenged. Likewise, an ordinance in Albuquerque preventing sex offenders from living near schools was also put on hold earlier this year after the ACLU filed suit claiming it violated the civil rights of sex offenders.

Assistant Utah Attorney General Craig Barlow concurred that trying to restrict a person because of history raises serious constitutional questions.
"You can't prohibit drug offenders from living near pharmacies or alcoholics from living near taverns or kleptomaniacs from living near people who have stuff," he said. If someone tried to place such restrictions on sex offenders they would probably only be able to live in Utah's most rural communities, he said. "The whole notion of where do they live begs the question of population. Any inhabited places are probably in some distance to a church, school or day care," Barlow said. "The problem is, how do you get (a statute) that is practical or constitutional? It would have to be both. If you make it so draconian,(sex offenders) stop registering all together and then the value is gone."

Probation or parole board across the nation considers each offender's history individually when setting conditions for parole, because no two offenders present the same level of risk to public safety. "It's about the situation," ……."Not all sex offenders are the predators and pathological personalities people assume they are. After 15 years on the board I recognize that there are murderers and then there are murderers. It's the same with sex offenses. There are sex offenders and then there are sex offenders." Says one parole board member.
Education followup

Fort Collins, CO

#10 Apr 4, 2007
------Common misperceptions----
Dr. Michael Stevens, director of Psychopharmacology Research for Valley Mental Health, agrees. Sex offenders do primarily fall into two broad categories which include different kinds of predatory behaviors. Those who prey randomly on "unknown" victims represent a much smaller portion of the sex offender population than those who are "domestic sexual offenders," such as biological relatives, he said. The mere presence of a sex offender within a neighborhood does not necessarily mean then that the person presents a significant threat. "Actually if you do a Google-like search, and you read very reputable news sources, you'll find some confusion in the distinction between those (offender) groups," Stevens said. "That uniformly tends to reinforce the public lack of knowledge and the public's tendency to think that a sexual offender represents a single syndrome."

In making its decisions about releasing a sex offender to parole, the board also considers whether the offender has successfully completed treatment, board administrator John Green said. It is generally true that most offenders do not get a parole date until such treatment is successfully completed, Green said. Those who refuse treatment typically stay incarcerated for longer periods of time.

Statistics show that treatment does have an impact on a sex offender's behavior, Corrections spokesman Ford said. Between 1991 and 2001, only 18.9 percent of offenders who completed sex offender treatment returned to prison — those returns were for parole violations, but not for new sex offenses, Ford said. "That's contrary to what the media would have people believe," Ford said. "Those recidivism numbers are significantly less than those for other kinds of offenses." In Robert's case, Brienholt said AP&P actually checked out his house before he moved in to make sure it was in an appropriate location. If a school or day care is a couple of streets over, he said that's OK. "The closest analogy I can make is an alcoholic. There's a lot of alcoholics out there who go the rest of their lives without touching another drink," he said. "Through proper treatment and supervision we feel they can become a minimal risk to the community." Exactly what to do with convicted sex offenders once they return to the community has been the focus of growing national attention.

Before 1994, only a handful of states required offenders to register their addresses with police. Now all 50 states do, as does the District of Columbia.Those lists have focused attention on where the sex offenders live, and as of this summer, 17 states had imposed residency requirements for them, according to research by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. This month, Californians voted to bar sex offenders from living within 2,000 feet of schools or parks -- though a federal judge quickly blocked that provision. In Iowa, which in 2002 became one of the first states to impose residency restrictions, police and prosecutors have united in opposition to the law, saying that it drives offenders underground and that there is "no demonstrated protective effect," according to a statement by the Iowa County Attorneys Association, which represents prosecutors. "The law was well-intentioned, but we don't see any evidence of a connection between where a person lives and where they might offend," said Corwin R. Ritchie, executive director of the group. Enforcing the law consumes lots of law enforcement time, he said, and leads some offenders to list interstate rest stops or Wal-Mart parking lots as their addresses. "Our concern is that these laws may give a false sense of security," said Carolyn Atwell-Davis, director of legislative affairs for the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. "We're not aware of any evidence that residency restrictions have prevented a child from being victimized."
disgusted by defenders

Pueblo, CO

#11 Apr 4, 2007
All sex offenders accused/convicted of having sex with children....as the law defines a child, should be executed! Immediately. I know what it's like to survive abuse as a child and if I had my way, all sex offenses would be punishable by death. I'd rather execute some idiot 18 year old that thinks it's appropriate to have sex with a 13 year old, than risk letting any other type of sex offender loose on the streets. People who defend and protect sex offenders should be punished also. You have no idea what it does to a child to be abused in such a manner. That child is changed forever. Left are the shattered remains of hope, trust and self loathing that it takes a lifetime to try and assemble into a "normal" life. The 3 stages of abuse are Victim, Survivor, then Thriver. Many of us never leave the Survivor phase. What kind of human collateral damage is left behind. You go ahead and try and justify the actions of the abusers...so some "innocents" get caught in the crossfire...well as far as I'm concerned...that's just too damn bad. You try living as a "Survivor" for 40 years.

Since: Apr 07

Fort Collins, CO

#12 Apr 4, 2007
Common misperceptions
Dr. Michael Stevens, director of Psychopharmacology Research for Valley Mental Health, agrees. Sex offenders do primarily fall into two broad categories which include different kinds of predatory behaviors. Those who prey randomly on "unknown" victims represent a much smaller portion of the sex offender population than those who are "domestic sexual offenders," such as biological relatives, he said. The mere presence of a sex offender within a neighborhood does not necessarily mean then that the person presents a significant threat. "Actually if you do a Google-like search, and you read very reputable news sources, you'll find some confusion in the distinction between those (offender) groups," Stevens said. "That uniformly tends to reinforce the public lack of knowledge and the public's tendency to think that a sexual offender represents a single syndrome."

In making its decisions about releasing a sex offender to parole, the board also considers whether the offender has successfully completed treatment, board administrator John Green said. It is generally true that most offenders do not get a parole date until such treatment is successfully completed, Green said. Those who refuse treatment typically stay incarcerated for longer periods of time.

Statistics show that treatment does have an impact on a sex offender's behavior, Corrections spokesman Ford said. Between 1991 and 2001, only 18.9 percent of offenders who completed sex offender treatment returned to prison — those returns were for parole violations, but not for new sex offenses, Ford said. "That's contrary to what the media would have people believe," Ford said. "Those recidivism numbers are significantly less than those for other kinds of offenses." In Robert's case, Brienholt said AP&P actually checked out his house before he moved in to make sure it was in an appropriate location. If a school or day care is a couple of streets over, he said that's OK. "The closest analogy I can make is an alcoholic. There's a lot of alcoholics out there who go the rest of their lives without touching another drink," he said. "Through proper treatment and supervision we feel they can become a minimal risk to the community." Exactly what to do with convicted sex offenders once they return to the community has been the focus of growing national attention.

Before 1994, only a handful of states required offenders to register their addresses with police. Now all 50 states do, as does the District of Columbia.Those lists have focused attention on where the sex offenders live, and as of this summer, 17 states had imposed residency requirements for them, according to research by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. This month, Californians voted to bar sex offenders from living within 2,000 feet of schools or parks -- though a federal judge quickly blocked that provision. In Iowa, which in 2002 became one of the first states to impose residency restrictions, police and prosecutors have united in opposition to the law, saying that it drives offenders underground and that there is "no demonstrated protective effect," according to a statement by the Iowa County Attorneys Association, which represents prosecutors. "The law was well-intentioned, but we don't see any evidence of a connection between where a person lives and where they might offend," said Corwin R. Ritchie, executive director of the group. Enforcing the law consumes lots of law enforcement time, he said, and leads some offenders to list interstate rest stops or Wal-Mart parking lots as their addresses. "Our concern is that these laws may give a false sense of security," said Carolyn Atwell-Davis, director of legislative affairs for the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. "We're not aware of any evidence that residency restrictions have prevented a child from being victimized."
education 3

Fort Collins, CO

#13 Apr 4, 2007
Much of the public fear surrounding sex offenders has arisen from the perception that most commit another offense. But that idea is a "myth," according to the Center for Sex Offender Management, an affiliate of the Justice Department.

Child molesters have a 13 percent reconviction rate for sexual offenses, according to research cited by the group, and rapists have a 19 percent reconviction rate for sexual offenses. Concrete measures of recidivism are difficult to come by, however, because most researchers believe that crimes against children are underreported. Even amid all the restrictions imposed by states, Georgia's attempt to control the sex offender population stood out.
Among those swept up under its definition of sex offender are a 26-year-old woman who was caught engaging in oral sex when she was in high school, and a mother of five who was convicted of being a party to a crime of statutory rape because, her indictment alleged, she did not do enough to stop her 15-year-old daughter's sexual activity. Moreover, by prohibiting sex offenders from living within 1,000 feet of school bus stops, the law would force all or nearly all the offenders living in some counties to move. That provision has been suspended, pending a federal court case. A consent order has temporarily halted the evictions of six elderly and disabled sex offenders, including Ruby Anderson's husband, Daniel. But even without the bus stop provision, 78 of 129 registered sex offenders in Houston County, where the Andersons live, were required to move, according to the sheriff's department there. Keen and other advocates have defended the legislation, calling it above all an effort to protect children. "We felt if we were going to err on any side, we were going to err on the side of protecting the innocent rather than those who have already been convicted," he said. He has no plans to alter it. As for those who feel it unfairly targets them, he said they can petition the local school board to move the bus stop. Although the legal actions have focused attention on the rights of convicted sex offenders, he noted, the victims "have been given a life sentence."

"There's not a day goes by, if you pick up a newspaper or turn on the TV, that you don't see these crimes continue to happen," he said.
For those affected by the law, however, it seems to have reached too far. "Every other block, there's a church," Ruby Anderson said. "Where can we go? I've checked." Her husband, who was a janitor, was charged with statutory rape in 1996 for having sex with a girl younger than 14. He pleaded guilty on one count and was sentenced to probation, according to Houston County court records.
"At this late date for him, the law is very unfair," Ruby Anderson said. "He doesn't have any recollection of what happened."
education 3

Fort Collins, CO

#14 Apr 4, 2007
Much of the public fear surrounding sex offenders has arisen from the perception that most commit another offense. But that idea is a "myth," according to the Center for Sex Offender Management, an affiliate of the Justice Department.

Child molesters have a 13 percent reconviction rate for sexual offenses, according to research cited by the group, and rapists have a 19 percent reconviction rate for sexual offenses. Concrete measures of recidivism are difficult to come by, however, because most researchers believe that crimes against children are underreported. Even amid all the restrictions imposed by states, Georgia's attempt to control the sex offender population stood out.
Among those swept up under its definition of sex offender are a 26-year-old woman who was caught engaging in oral sex when she was in high school, and a mother of five who was convicted of being a party to a crime of statutory rape because, her indictment alleged, she did not do enough to stop her 15-year-old daughter's sexual activity. Moreover, by prohibiting sex offenders from living within 1,000 feet of school bus stops, the law would force all or nearly all the offenders living in some counties to move. That provision has been suspended, pending a federal court case. A consent order has temporarily halted the evictions of six elderly and disabled sex offenders, including Ruby Anderson's husband, Daniel. But even without the bus stop provision, 78 of 129 registered sex offenders in Houston County, where the Andersons live, were required to move, according to the sheriff's department there. Keen and other advocates have defended the legislation, calling it above all an effort to protect children. "We felt if we were going to err on any side, we were going to err on the side of protecting the innocent rather than those who have already been convicted," he said. He has no plans to alter it. As for those who feel it unfairly targets them, he said they can petition the local school board to move the bus stop. Although the legal actions have focused attention on the rights of convicted sex offenders, he noted, the victims "have been given a life sentence."

"There's not a day goes by, if you pick up a newspaper or turn on the TV, that you don't see these crimes continue to happen," he said.
For those affected by the law, however, it seems to have reached too far. "Every other block, there's a church," Ruby Anderson said. "Where can we go? I've checked." Her husband, who was a janitor, was charged with statutory rape in 1996 for having sex with a girl younger than 14. He pleaded guilty on one count and was sentenced to probation, according to Houston County court records.
"At this late date for him, the law is very unfair," Ruby Anderson said. "He doesn't have any recollection of what happened."
education 4

Fort Collins, CO

#15 Apr 4, 2007
Many experts question the wisdom of restricting where sex
offenders can live. Rather than keeping communities safe, residency
restrictions might actually do the opposite, they say.

There's pros and cons to them," said Marc Klaas, whose 12-year-
old daughter, Polly, was raped and killed by a predator in a
California case that drew nationwide attention more than a decade
ago. "What we need is better management, not necessarily more
restrictions. Ultimately, it will be a failed experiment."

"Some of these limitations, frankly, make it harder to keep an eye
on these guys," said Sangamon County assistant state's attorney
Sheryl Essenburg, who has specialized in prosecuting sex offenders
since 1989. Essenburg and other experts believe that residency restrictions have reduced the ability of law en- forcement to track sex offenders and, ultimately, to prevent them from committing more crimes. Residency restrictions might prompt sex offenders to stop registering so that no one knows their whereabouts, they say. And they worry about hundreds of sex offenders who have been denied parole because they can't find legal places to live. Eventually, their sentences will expire, and when that happens, they'll be released without supervision.
Politicians trumpet restrictions as a way to keep communities
safe. "Residency restrictions are just one way of trying to protect
people in neighborhoods," said Ald. Mark Mahoney, who sponsored the Springfield ordinance that bans sexual predators from living within
1,000 feet of each other without permits from the city council, which
unanimously passed the measure in December. "If these guys are turned back to prison, a lot of people will breathe easier." But Essenburg, who serves on the state Sex Offender Management
Board, sees no advantage to Springfield's 1,000-foot rule. "I don't have reason to think it makes the community safer," she
said. "And I do have concerns that it makes it much harder for law
enforcement and parole to do an effective job of monitoring sex
offenders." Like other experts, Essenburg says lawmakers aren't thinking about long-term ramifications. "We're doing it backwards," she said. "We're thinking up ways we can make life difficult for these people without thinking about 'Does this make the community safer or less safe?' "I'm afraid we have people in politics who, anytime you can make life more difficult for sex offenders, you get points for that. If
people thought it all the way through, they wouldn't be so quick to
laud these not-so-well-thought-out efforts."

The public needs to be education….
“The purpose of education is to replace an empty mind with an open one.”
education 3

Fort Collins, CO

#16 Apr 4, 2007
Much of the public fear surrounding sex offenders has arisen from the perception that most commit another offense. But that idea is a "myth," according to the Center for Sex Offender Management, an affiliate of the Justice Department.

Child molesters have a 13 percent reconviction rate for sexual offenses, according to research cited by the group, and rapists have a 19 percent reconviction rate for sexual offenses. Concrete measures of recidivism are difficult to come by, however, because most researchers believe that crimes against children are underreported. Even amid all the restrictions imposed by states, Georgia's attempt to control the sex offender population stood out.
Among those swept up under its definition of sex offender are a 26-year-old woman who was caught engaging in oral sex when she was in high school, and a mother of five who was convicted of being a party to a crime of statutory rape because, her indictment alleged, she did not do enough to stop her 15-year-old daughter's sexual activity. Moreover, by prohibiting sex offenders from living within 1,000 feet of school bus stops, the law would force all or nearly all the offenders living in some counties to move. That provision has been suspended, pending a federal court case. A consent order has temporarily halted the evictions of six elderly and disabled sex offenders, including Ruby Anderson's husband, Daniel. But even without the bus stop provision, 78 of 129 registered sex offenders in Houston County, where the Andersons live, were required to move, according to the sheriff's department there. Keen and other advocates have defended the legislation, calling it above all an effort to protect children. "We felt if we were going to err on any side, we were going to err on the side of protecting the innocent rather than those who have already been convicted," he said. He has no plans to alter it. As for those who feel it unfairly targets them, he said they can petition the local school board to move the bus stop. Although the legal actions have focused attention on the rights of convicted sex offenders, he noted, the victims "have been given a life sentence."

"There's not a day goes by, if you pick up a newspaper or turn on the TV, that you don't see these crimes continue to happen," he said.
For those affected by the law, however, it seems to have reached too far. "Every other block, there's a church," Ruby Anderson said. "Where can we go? I've checked." Her husband, who was a janitor, was charged with statutory rape in 1996 for having sex with a girl younger than 14. He pleaded guilty on one count and was sentenced to probation, according to Houston County court records.
"At this late date for him, the law is very unfair," Ruby Anderson said. "He doesn't have any recollection of what happened."
education 3

Fort Collins, CO

#17 Apr 4, 2007
Much of the public fear surrounding sex offenders has arisen from the perception that most commit another offense. But that idea is a "myth," according to the Center for Sex Offender Management, an affiliate of the Justice Department.

Child molesters have a 13 percent reconviction rate for sexual offenses, according to research cited by the group, and rapists have a 19 percent reconviction rate for sexual offenses. Concrete measures of recidivism are difficult to come by, however, because most researchers believe that crimes against children are underreported. Even amid all the restrictions imposed by states, Georgia's attempt to control the sex offender population stood out.
Among those swept up under its definition of sex offender are a 26-year-old woman who was caught engaging in oral sex when she was in high school, and a mother of five who was convicted of being a party to a crime of statutory rape because, her indictment alleged, she did not do enough to stop her 15-year-old daughter's sexual activity. Moreover, by prohibiting sex offenders from living within 1,000 feet of school bus stops, the law would force all or nearly all the offenders living in some counties to move. That provision has been suspended, pending a federal court case. A consent order has temporarily halted the evictions of six elderly and disabled sex offenders, including Ruby Anderson's husband, Daniel. But even without the bus stop provision, 78 of 129 registered sex offenders in Houston County, where the Andersons live, were required to move, according to the sheriff's department there. Keen and other advocates have defended the legislation, calling it above all an effort to protect children. "We felt if we were going to err on any side, we were going to err on the side of protecting the innocent rather than those who have already been convicted," he said. He has no plans to alter it. As for those who feel it unfairly targets them, he said they can petition the local school board to move the bus stop. Although the legal actions have focused attention on the rights of convicted sex offenders, he noted, the victims "have been given a life sentence."

"There's not a day goes by, if you pick up a newspaper or turn on the TV, that you don't see these crimes continue to happen," he said.
For those affected by the law, however, it seems to have reached too far. "Every other block, there's a church," Ruby Anderson said. "Where can we go? I've checked." Her husband, who was a janitor, was charged with statutory rape in 1996 for having sex with a girl younger than 14. He pleaded guilty on one count and was sentenced to probation, according to Houston County court records.
"At this late date for him, the law is very unfair," Ruby Anderson said. "He doesn't have any recollection of what happened."
Helly

Parker, CO

#18 Apr 4, 2007
Get a BIG dog, a gun and leave it at that...one or the other will take care of anyone coming on your property that you did not allow. Keep your friends close and your enemies closer, Ignorance is bliss...And honestly, its the people that are not registered that pose the biggest threat, for all anyone knows the Joneses across the street could be harboring a pervert! One other thing, talk to your local police! Get to know them as people, ask their opinion on this matter because THEY are the ones that will have to enforce these loop-hole filled laws that it seems anyone can create anymore. Be happy, be safe...but NEVER live your life in fear! Cheers!
Tim P

Kansas City, MO

#19 Apr 4, 2007
As a retired Police officer I can tell you that the public is not getting the full word on Sex Offenders (SO's) and Sex Offender Registrys (SOR).

The fact is that SOR do little to protect the public or childern. More than 90% of sexual assaults are commited by a person well known and trusted by the victim, numbers from the US Dept. of Justice Bureau of Justice Statistics. As for the number of repeat crimes by sex offenders again the public is not being told the full story. Again The US Dept. Of Justice Bureau of Justice Statistics On Recidivism showes that to be at 3.5% repeat the crime. The chances are greater that a criminal who was arrested for somegthing other than a sex crime, upon the release from prison that criminal will commit a sexual assault.
Why all the media attention to this. Well of course the fact that some very bad assaults of childern have taken place by repeat offenders. But the REAL TRUTH as to why so much media attention; those we have elected to office are using this issue to show they are hard on crime. Futhermore they are using this issue to get the media to give them free press. What better way can they get all the free press and votes at the same time. As for the police and the states, these laws have put extra work on them, but guess what they are not telling you; they get extra money from the federal goverment for having many of these laws in place. Futher they can always say to you; these sex offender laws are puting more work on us and we need more money to cover the extra work and personel we have had to add to keep an eye on these sex offenders. Most of the public will buy that and vote them the money. Its time we stop making these feel good laws that do nothing to protect our kids. And look to the real issue education of the childern to the facts. Retired Law Enforcement Officer Tim P.
mws

Denver, CO

#20 Apr 4, 2007
yet again, people seem to be supporting the rights of the criminals rather than the rights of the victims or potential victims.

that said, more laws will not change reality. the ones that would abide by the new laws are not the ones we need to worry about. new laws will not affect the offenders that don't follow the laws anyway. better enforcement of laws already in place is what is needed, no matter what type of crime we are speaking of.
Just an opinion

Louisville, CO

#21 Apr 4, 2007
disgusted by defenders wrote:
All sex offenders accused/convicted of having sex with children....as the law defines a child, should be executed! Immediately. I know what it's like to survive abuse as a child and if I had my way, all sex offenses would be punishable by death. I'd rather execute some idiot 18 year old that thinks it's appropriate to have sex with a 13 year old, than risk letting any other type of sex offender loose on the streets. People who defend and protect sex offenders should be punished also. You have no idea what it does to a child to be abused in such a manner. That child is changed forever. Left are the shattered remains of hope, trust and self loathing that it takes a lifetime to try and assemble into a "normal" life. The 3 stages of abuse are Victim, Survivor, then Thriver. Many of us never leave the Survivor phase. What kind of human collateral damage is left behind. You go ahead and try and justify the actions of the abusers...so some "innocents" get caught in the crossfire...well as far as I'm concerned...that's just too damn bad. You try living as a "Survivor" for 40 years.
I am feel for you for having to live your life like that. It sounds like the person who violated you was some one close. I agree we should not defend tha actions of perverts. However there are cases where one turns 18 and the other party is 17 or 16. I do not see this person being a sex offender. In reality you are a year apart. I do not think some one should be put to death because of this or have to register as a sex offender. I pray that one day you are not the survivor, and will be able to find love that I am sure you do diserve. Good luck in life and God Bless you.
pathetic

Madison, WI

#23 Apr 4, 2007
Parents, PARENT your own children instead of depending on the govt. to do it for you. Worry about your child playing in the front yard of your home? Get off your a$$ and go out with them. Worried about your child walking home from school? Carpool. Worried about your child getting molested? Watch that uncle that always wants to hold your kid..or watch that teacher who shows too much interest in your child.

We don't need any more of a nanny state than we already have.

You want to know where sex offenders live? More power to you, but the more restrictions you put on them, the less likely they are to register then where are you? NOT KNOWING anything.

It would be so much better if only the police knew where the sex offenders lived, then people wouldn't be lulled in to any false sense of security and maybe parents would take back some of their responsibility.

Write to the legislature, tell them that instead of passing these PC, good for nothing laws that maybe they should look at tougher sentencing laws for the REAL child molestors out there. Not the 18 year old kid that has sex with his 17 year old girlfriend. Not the father of the child whose mom is pissed off and calls "child molestor" to get sole custody in a divorce..but these sick bastards that truly are aroused by children. THAT is what we need...lock 'em up.
Disgusted by Defenders

Pueblo, CO

#24 Apr 4, 2007
Just an opinion wrote:
<quoted text>

I am feel for you for having to live your life like that. It sounds like the person who violated you was some one close. I agree we should not defend tha actions of perverts. However there are cases where one turns 18 and the other party is 17 or 16. I do not see this person being a sex offender. In reality you are a year apart. I do not think some one should be put to death because of this or have to register as a sex offender. I pray that one day you are not the survivor, and will be able to find love that I am sure you do diserve. Good luck in life and God Bless you.
It was my father..and he molested my half sister before me and was priming my younger sister to be his next victim before he died. Clearly I err on the side of caution. I understand that my view is specifically extreme. Makes me an unpopular jury candidate, but it's just another level of fall out from being abused. Another example of injury to the soul of a child. Thanks for responding kindly.

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