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National

TX: New law keeps sex offenders out of college dorms

State Rep. John Raney, R-College Station, represents a district flush with college students and considers higher education one of his legislative priorities. So it was “shocking” for him to learn that no Texas law prevented sex offenders from living in campus dorms — and even more upsetting when a constituent came to his office to tell him that at her out-of-state college, she had been forced to live down the hall from a student who had sexually assaulted her the year before. …

For one thing, it targets a small population: Of the roughly 1.5 million college students in Texas, fewer than 700 are registered sex offenders, according to the Texas Department of Public Safety. And Mary Sue Molnar, executive director of Texas Voices for Reason and Justice, a group that advocates for registered sex offenders, said she doubts any registrants would even want to live in campus dorms, given the intense stigma they face already. …

The Texas Association Against Sexual Assault took a neutral position on HB 355 during the session, Communications Program Director Ted Rutherford said. “We know the vast majority of rapists have not been previously criminally adjudicated.  So, this raises the question how much impact a bill like this could have,” Rutherford said.  “We also know there’s a lot of work to be done to prevent sexual violence, regardless of whether registered sex offenders are allowed on campuses.” Full Article

Join the discussion

  1. MatthewLL

    Once again, one has to look at the details to understand what is really going on. The bill affects those who are convicted on or after 9/1/2017 and designated a level 2 or 3. Level one offenders require approval by the University to live on campus. This does not make the law any better or more effective, for it is still stupid law, but at least it is retroactive (from what I can tell).

  2. TXSO4Life

    Affects those who are convicted on or after 9/1/2017, I think you mean the new law is not retroactive if it has an effective conviction date after 9/17.

    • MatthewLL

      LANGUAGE FROM THE NEW BILL.

      “(H) certain locations of residence are prohibited under Article 62.064 for a person with a reportable conviction or adjudication for an offense occurring on or after September1,2017, except as other wise provided by that article;”

  3. 1984

    Just stupid. I am surprised being allowed by University leaders.

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