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KS: Kansas appealing in sex offender registry ruling

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — Kansas will appeal a state district court judge’s decision that orders a child molester’s name to be removed from its offender registry after finding the registration laws violate the U.S. Constitution, the state’s top prosecutor said Thursday.

At issue is Tuesday’s decision in which Shawnee County Judge Larry Hendricks found that Kansas law ostracizes offenders and requires them to remain registered longer than necessary. But, his ruling applied only to the 50-year-old Lenexa man who sued the Kansas Bureau of Investigation and Johnson County sheriff’s office seeking to end his registration requirement. Full Article

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  1. JB

    Another state embarking upon another losing battle…the dam is finally starting to crack.

  2. alert

    I can’t help but notice that alcoholics who drive while drunk escape Kansas registration laws which are meant to protect it’s children and the public.
    Maybe they don’t represent the danger I imagine?
    Or perhaps drunk drivers encompass too many law makers, politicians, district attorneys and other highly respected citizens.
    If anyone deserves their history printed on a drivers license, they seem suited.

    • td777

      I’ve said that about drunk drivers for about 7 or 8 years, as well as drug dealers. Drug dealers hurt more people, affect more lives, and risk far more others than registered sex offenders.

  3. Anonymous Nobody

    I think you are seeing what you want to see when you say the dam is breaking. I would say that opinion is fine and dandy, no problem to hold — except that it tends also to lead to the wrong strategy and tactics and expectations in continuing the fight. If you think the powers that be are reasonable, you will not approach this fight with the right strategy. They are not at all interested in being reasonable or honest. And because of that mindset, the chances of this ruling being upheld all the way through SCOTUS is just about nil. Oh, I hope as much as can be that I am way wrong, but I don’t think I am, I’ve watched this stuff for far too many years.

    In my opinion, no, this does not represent the dam breaking. This is simply an anomaly by an isolated judge whose opinion is unlikely to prevail and will not persuade any of his colleagues — very unfortunately. Its nice to have it, but it just is not so significant as to represent the dam breaking.

    For one thing, it is this judge’s personal opinion that the Kansas law now goes to the level of punishment, Oh, I agree that it does (I agree with the former California High Court that once ruled that simple SOR without any public notice or any other collateral requirements and with a lot more leniency about doing the registration is still cruel and unusual punishment), but that doesn’t mean the judiciary generally agrees with me. No, the judiciary has already made rulings up and down the ranks and across the 50 states, and it is clear they will all bend over backward and go to extremes to say SOR is not punishment — they will flat out rule that blue is red, as they have the power to do so. Yes, maybe at some point some collateral horror that gets added on will finally be ruled to be punishment, but at best that will only get those final items dropped from the laws, and the rest of SOR will continue as always.

    In California, they have prepared for that by splitting 290 up into quite a few different statues, and thus if any part is ruled to be punishment, all the other statutes-parts will remain retroactive. This is why 290 was split into several statutes a few years back.

    This Kansas judge ruled that the simply fact of 25 years length of time for the SOR requirement constitutes punishment! That has already been ruled on by the California court, and I think even SCOTUS. In many respects, the Kansas law is harsher than that law in California, so maybe those parts will end up being held to be punishment, but not the whole law.

    • B

      I think the analogy referred to cracks and not breaks. Maybe it is more accurate to say that the reservoir is not filling up as fast?

      Our esteem Chief Justice Roberts once said that registering as a sex offender is no more inconvenient that signing up for the Price Club. He said that as an argument before he got on the court, but it is clear that the sentiment permeates the court’s thinking about registration.

      The Price Club no longer exists, but I don’t recall that their membership featured homelessness and unemployment. In a way, though, I like the standard. Although I think registration is a worthless exercise, if all cities and all states were held to the Price Club standard (no law will make registration more difficult than a Price Club membership), then I wouldn’t mind so much.

      Maybe John Roberts becomes our hero.

      • td777

        Actually, the Price Club was purchased and became part of Costco, so they have a similar signup. By mentioning the Price Club, he simply showed how out of touch with the common man Chief Justice Roberts really is.

  4. Louis

    In my opinion the 290 laws in California are hideous and unconscionable at best. the problem is that we have full time legislators whom justifies their existence by passing laws which are absolutely punitive and post conviction consequences. Besides an inconvenience (justice Roberts), these laws violate each and every person(s) whom fall victim of this post punitive requirements. The California 290 laws are ridiculous and a violation the Fourteenth amendment of the U.S. Constitution. This is America , where are the second chances once an individual pays his or hers debt to society? Just like California prop 8 , the courts will side with the change of times and make decisions according to the Constitution. This by far not over! The judge who ruled on this decision will have other judges follow suit. Standby and watch.

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