‘Post-Snowden Era’ Audit of CA Sex-Offender Monitoring

SAN FRANCISCO (CN) – The NSA’s controversial domestic surveillance program factored into a 9th Circuit hearing Wednesday on California’s monitoring of sex offenders.
Proposition 35, passed by voters last year, mostly aims to punish human traffickers, but also mandates that sex offenders give police a complete list of their usernames, screen names, email addresses and Internet service providers within 24 hours of setting up a new account or screen name. Failure to do so carries up to three years in prison. Full Article

Related: Release Net identities of sex offenders, state urges

The state asked a federal appeals court Tuesday to allow enforcement of a voter-approved law requiring 73,000 registered sex offenders in California to disclose their Internet identities to police.

The law was part of Proposition 35, approved by an 81 percent majority in November. U.S. District Judge Thelton Henderson of San Francisco blocked the Internet disclosure requirement from taking effect, saying it was not narrowly targeted at preventing sex crimes and would discourage offenders from exercising their free speech right to post anonymous comments online. Full Article

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I note, while this Prop. 35 bit would be actual monitoring, until now 290 has never suggested that registrants are to be monitored or surveilled. That surveillance term came up in a court ruling years ago, and has been quoted and regurgitated without any thought or consideration — or challenge –ever since. In fact, 290 does NOT provide for surveillance. It merely provides for identifying registrants and knowing where to find them IF they are suspected in a crime.

It is just as unconstitutional for the police to surveil a registrant without any probable cause or any crime as it is to surveil anyone else. 290 has never spoken of surveillance.

This is a point that should be pushed and pushed hard. This idea that registrants are open to surveillance is completely false — until this Prop 35 statute now calls for it. This idea in Prop 35 that a registrant can be subjected to this surveillance is just as unconstitutional as applied to a registrant as it is for anyone else. It also is a grave danger to everyone, as this is how such widespread surveillance (and spying) of an entire citizenry gets started. And I am disappointed not to hear this argument added to any others against Prop 35.

I would like to make two comments regarding statements made by the State attorneys.

1. They described in detail how the identification and apprehension of a suspect would be aided in having this list of online identifiers – shaving valuable **hours** off that process.

To that I say exactly the opposite may be true. There are many sites where you can comment as a guest or anonymous (like this one – please note my screen name, dozens of others must have used that on this site). While usernames on many sites may be unique to that site, the certainly are not across the internet. So what is someone to stop from using a name they see on one site on another? Not only is any of this not useful, it also could muddle an investigation.

2. This requirement is not an unreasonable burden on someone already required to register? But it most certainly is. Name one action in civil life where you have 24 hours to take action with a government authority. Under the threat of prosecution and incarceration. Buying a car. Filing your taxes. Paying for your speeding ticket.

Now I have heard a judge say to a defendant at sentencing “after leaving here you are to check in directly with the probation department. Do not take a nap. Do not go to Taco Bell. If you do you will go to jail”. Not a problem. Repeat, this is at sentencing to probation. In the middle of the, yes, punishment phase.

Again, name one instance where an action as innocent as making a comment on this site under the name “Johnny Appleseed” and not running over to the PD within 24 hours lands you in prison for up to 3 years. Not unreasonable! What planet do these people live on?

In Del Norte County, California, our Sheriffs’ office refused to let anyone register except between a 2 hour window only on Thursdays.

It would be impossible to comply with any law that says “Must provide this information within 24 hours”.

I like this part
“these are folks that are going to have to report all of their monikers that are used on the Internet and have no idea whether the police are regularly trolling to monitor everything that they say on the Internet.”

“all of their monikers” I think this judge “get it” but we will see

The federal judge ruling got it right ….the section of prop 35
does not have evidence to overturn ruling……..also 35 was fronted to voters has more punishment to sex trafficking ….
no one….no one on listing committed a sex trafficking crime
to further punishment ……..also as free Americans ….no other free Americans are forced to give private communication info…….the information coerced under threat of jail/prison must go through Constitutional Rights of search warrant if crime involved ……..also free speech will
be criminal …..the federal judge ruling got it right.

The unsaid assumption in proposition 35 is that all registrants are sex traffickers and that they can’t wait to go online to hook children into acts of sex. I think if you ask anyone who voted for this proposition, that is what they believe. The State has not said one thing to dispell this myth. It is mass deception on a scale not seen since the McCarthy era.

One of the worst lines in this is “Use of the Internet by sex offenders to commit crimes rose between 2000 and 2006, the lawyer added.” Did they bother to think about the fact that the number of laws regarding internet use quadrupled and then some during that period?

The best line…Judge Schroeder’s response after Harrison said “The fact that a registered sex offender didn’t use the Internet to commit his first crime or facilitate it doesn’t mean that he might not use the Internet in the future.” Her response was “That’s true of all of us – that just because we haven’t been sex criminals in the past, that we might not be in the future.” I can only hope and pray more people would start using the level of reason and logic and intelligence that Judge Schroeder showed here!

Convicted once by evidence specific to my individual case. Due process. Convicted over and over again by statistics, which don’t describe my individual case. Tyranny.

So, they are getting these identifiers already? Isn’t this in violation of the injunction? How are they getting these? Taking advantage of registrants who don’t know of an injunction, who don’t have a computer or are not allowed to use one? The internet is the only way I found out about it. Are they filtering out meta data? If you or I willfully violated a court order, you or I would be facing prison time. Maybe I am missing something? I think I will change my moniker to “Bewildered”, because that is the way I feel most of the time.

A famous founding father once said. “Government at its best is a troublesome servant and at its worst a fearsome master.” So tell me is it really at its best these days?Our government has become the fearsome master the founding fathers warned of. Did we allow this to happen? Yes. Is it too late to turn the tide? Maybe. One thing is for certain; your rights are being gobbled up faster than you know. Things you don’t even know are your rights are being taken away right in front of your eyes. Case in point: I am now required to buy health insurance whether I want it or not. My choice to trust in God and be healthy is being erroded. I choose to pay the Health Tax even though the Media calls it a fine I must face. The Supreme Court ruled it a “Tax” in order to support the individual mandate. After all congress has the power to levy taxes. So much for no new taxes. If the Media calls it a fine, even though it was ruled a tax, I guess now I’m guilty of the crime of being healthy. So who wins the most in The Affordable Care Act? The big insurance companies of course. And who looses? We loose our rights.
Thank You for your time.