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‘It’s about the safety of kids’: Dana Point lawmaker’s bill would ban sex offenders from parks

Orange County’s ban on sex offenders in parks, declared illegal by appellate judges last year, has a new backer: a proposed bill in the state Assembly that would allow cities to enforce restrictions on such criminals.

The bill from state Assemblyman Bill Brough, R-Dana Point, aims to prohibit sex offenders from going to parks and beaches without written permission from the sheriff or local police chief. The bill’s co-authors include Assemblyman Matthew Harper, R-Huntington Beach.

“At the end of the day, it’s about the safety of kids,” said Brough, a former Dana Point city councilman. “The locals know what they need, and they’re on the front lines and they can make the best decisions on what’s best for their community.” Full Article

Related: AB 201

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  1. USA

    Wow, as a young man growing up, I always believed that people in high places do the right thing! I was rather disturbed by the DA’s remarks (violent rapists ect). This is nothing more than what people call propaganda! Most of society are unaware that many offenders are or have been convicted of minor offenses that in many cases don’t even involve a victim/internet porn ect. I just thank God my case/20 years ago took place in LA and not OC. OC seems more interested in a hanging them high and high conviction rates! Very disturbing. The most disturbing fact is that there is a 1.8 percent rate to re-offend and yet they want stricter and stricter laws? Maybe its better to be a gang member in OC? Highly disturbing. If the law was some how to pass, I would imagine this would again be something that ends up in court and results in the use of tax payers dollars. Maybe the DA of OC should focus upon rehabilitation, rather than trying to portray these individuals as animals and evil. *** please refrain from making personal insults. *** Moderator

  2. FED UP

    I take issue with the press and politicians continuing to reference people convicted of a sex offense as “Sex Offenders”. Just because you have been convicted of an offense doesn’t mean you are a continuing or lifelong Sex Offender!! How many persons on “the list” were “teenage lovers”, or adult with underage consensual affairs, or people who took a plea deal and were innocent? EVERY article i read gives the tone that all registered sex offenders are rapists or violent criminals that cannot be reformed when in actuality, this is a minority of the registry I am guessing. I am calling the author of this article today in regards to the below quote from the article.
    “But since the appellate ruling, Bellucci and a longtime sex offender in San Luis Obispo County have embarked on a legal crusade to change restrictions against sex offenders in dozens of cities, including Westminster, Santa Ana, Orange, Ontario, Murrieta, Carson, Pomona, South Pasadena and Victorville.”

    A long time sex offender from San Luis Obispo ??? This implies that the person has been offending for a LONG TIME, when actually it was most likely a one time offense a LONG TIME ago! Everyone of us needs to start to challenge the authors of these articles and politicians and set the record straight!

    • Janice Bellucci

      Language is important. That is why we refer to individuals convicted of a sex offense as “registered citizens” and not sex offenders. Other terms that seem to work are “registrants” and “a person required to register”. We encourage others to use these terms as well.

      • Lance Mitaro

        Janice, those euphemisms you suggested are STILL offensive, obnoxious and disparaging. It’s the equivalent of *igger = Negro. You cannot word-smith or re-band a connotation to make it appear more “user-friendly” and less threatening to the public. The term “registrant” – although less colorful than “sex offender” – implies an individual is still perceived as a sub-human and worthy of marginalization.

        • FRegistryTerrorists

          Lance Mitaro: I have read many of your postings all over the Internet and find them to be intelligent and well-reasoned. Never stop fighting. For me personally, I like to think of this as a war and it won’t be over until I have won.

          Anyway, what term do you think we should use? “sex offender” is factually incorrect and also a weapon used by the immoral side of this war. I will never say that I am a “sex offender”.

          “Registered Citizen” is factually accurate. One thing I like about that term is that it alludes to a police state and Nazi Germany, which of course is very appropriate for the “sex offender” witch hunt. The term also covers any person Registered with big government for anything. When more Registries are created, more and more people are going to be Registered Citizens. At some point, there will be millions and millions of people Registered for something.

          I do not like “Registered Sex Offender”, even though it is factually accurate. It’s also a weapon.

          I personally like “Person Registered for Harassment, Restrictions, and Punishment (PRHRP)”. I think it is completely accurate and more representative of reality.

    • Gerald

      Correct!
      The label “Sex Offender” (given willy nilly by the courts) carries with it the connotation “dangerous sexual deviate” which may or may not be an accurate description of the persons personality.
      In fact, the statistics clearly point the other way as most perpetrators, if allowed,
      lead productive lives free from further sexual crimes.
      Obviously, it’s time to stop the abuse of those individuals released back into the community with detrimental labels which are usually unfair and inaccurate.

  3. Michael

    This kind of nonsense is why I feel Janice and Chance should issue a public debate challenge to Assbm. Brough, Carson city Councilman Robles and the OC DA.

    Let them (the politicians who are just pandering to keep tier names I the news) justify their positions in the face of the FACTS. A debate would force them to confront the FACTS and not get away with fallacious talking points.

    And if they decline the challenge, as there is a good chance they will, well, that too says something.

    • Q

      Nice idea; but it would never happen because all of the people who you listed, as well as all of their kind run from the truth about what’s being done to us because a public debate would expose them for what they really are; liars.

  4. FED UP

    Thanks Janice!
    I just emailed Meagan directly:
    Meagan,
    Regarding your article, it would be really nice to see any follow up articles that you may write to be a little more fair to “registered citizens” by calling them such, instead of just using the title “sex offenders”. Please read comments taken from the CA RSOL website regarding your article. My comments are under “FED UP”. As well, mass banning of registrants from parks, beaches etc. is absurd and that is why California needs to get with the times and pass a tiered registry that will allow law enforcement and politicians to effectively monitor registrants that are considered high risk. California is one of only three states that has a life long registration requirements for all offenders, which completely bogs down the system to work effectively and truly is a civil rights issue for many registrants who have already finished their sentences of incarceration, parole or probation.
    Thank you!
    Fed Up

  5. Q

    I sen’t this to MEGHANN M. CUNIFF. The writer of this article.

    “At the end of the day, it’s about the safety of kids,” said Brough, a former Dana Point city councilman. “The locals know what they need, and they’re on the front lines and they can make the best decisions on what’s best for their community.” ????

    Apparently “Brough” and the citizens of that community need to get their facts straight and learn where the real threat to the ” safety of kids” lies; and it’s not with people on the registry. More than likely it’s in their own homes, schools and with people they are familiar with. Empirical fact’s, as well as government statistics prove this to be true.I challenge any journalist to find and publish one single documented instance where the registry or any of these laws have prevented anything or saved one child.

  6. James Townsend

    Its about the kids. I guess they can say that and be positively right. They have to find something that makes sense and something that will instill a mothers love for there offspring. But what about rights. When I blow my nose its all about the tissue paper I use to wipe it. Sometimes I just use my pants. Get the point!
    People will have any excuse to stop sex offenders as they seem better than the sex offender and are bias and it discriminating to ones ego and one’s character. Just because one is labeled doesn’t mean he is that label

    • Q

      “The state must declare the child to be the most precious treasure of the people. As long as the government is perceived as working for the benefit of the children, the people will happily endure almost any curtailment of liberty and almost any deprivation.” Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf

      Especially if it’s not curtailment of their liberty!!!! Q

  7. Lance Mitaro

    ‘It’s about the safety of kids’

    The road to Hell is paved with good intentions. By all means, keep laying those bricks of wish-full thinking.

  8. Bluewall

    Why?? After CARSOL hammered down on other cities, why do they want to do it?

  9. Heartbroken

    Perhaps it is time to take the plight of 290 registrants to the people. Obama’s speech on countering terrorism today contained very pointed references to not singling out groups of people for hatred or violence; for the fundamental right of all Americans to justice and equal treatment. Yet, registered citizens are specifically not granted these most basic of protections. Maybe Janice and the other RSOL organizations around the country could start a White House Petition https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petition/create and encourage Obama to stand behind those ideals to bring justice back to registrants.

  10. Michael

    OK, since others are posting them, here is the letter I sent to that Register reporter:

    Meghann:

    I read with interest the article you wrote about Assemblyman Brough’s effort to allow cities to develop their own sex offender presence restriction ordinances. I’ve also head the story on other media along with the City of Carson desire to fight having to repeal its similar ordinance.

    But what I have not heard any reporter ask, either Assemblyman Brough or Carson councilman Robles, who seems to be driving that city’s effort, is what actual problem will these ordinances solve?

    When the parks ordinance was being proposed in Orange County, there was not one law enforcement representative that testified, before their respective city or county governing, bodies that they had a particular problem with currently register sex offenders (RSOs) re-offending against children in their public parks?

    Also, while these ordinances were commonly sold to the public with the Chicken-Little-like mantra that they were necessary to protect children from roving bands of currently registered sex offenders who, if the ordinances were not passed, would be snatching children out of the parks in record numbers, they (the ordinances) did not just target those who have assaulted children or adults. They targeted ALL registrants, the vast majority of whom are not any danger to the public.

    If the true goal of these ordinances is to protect children, and not just give politicians “cred” with their base, they need to specifically identify RSOs who offender against children/women and who are declared sexually violent predators (SVPs).

    If the ordinance do not do that, then the politicians who propose them are just grandstanding and are playing to the ignorance and fears of the general public on this issue.

    As one Irvine city councilwoman said when they were considering their ordinance, “This ordinance looks like a solution looking for a problem”. And she was very right.

    Thank you for you kind attention

  11. Stephen

    I’m pleased to hear 2 of you, “FED UP” and “Q” doing something, Now send out more Emails to other reporters that Are in Competition with the Lady. I’ve always wondered How they would handle A Political Event Held by registered citizens in a park. Could make for some Mighty big Waves. I started out with just Emails, now I go Speak against Bills. Once you do it you’ll find there is nothing to it. Some of the People I have to face are Customers of where I work. I Find Cost of a law can sometimes open Eyes. Stand up for your Rights.

    • Q

      Hi Stephen:

      Where do you speak against bills? Is it locally, or on the state level in Sacramento? And how do you find out when a new bill that goes against the constitution and freedom in general is being considered; Links?

    • Timmr

      Stephen, thank you for your courage. Maybe some of us should go beyond responding to these hacks, be proactive and start writing our own columns to submit to newspapers. One among us has written a book that spurred the formation of CARSOL. what else is possible? With one word, “sex offender,” a whole class of people is created to be discriminated against. With words based on truth, we can destroy the myths. There are many here that have the gift of writing and have the facts to back up what they say. It takes time to do it well, and many have a lot of time being unemployed or lucky enough to have economic security. That’s not a big leap and you can even adopt a pseudonym if you are not ready to put your face out there.

  12. MS

    I too emailed her and suggest more do the same.

  13. j

    IT IS ABOUT THE STUPIDITY AND SHAMELESS VOTE PANDERING OF LAWMAKERS!

    IF THEY EVER BOTHERED TO READ THE DOC RISK ASSESSMENT DOCUMENTS, THEY’D KNOW.
    BUT THEY ARE TOO WRAPPED IN THEIR OWN POLITICAL ASPIRATIONS TO BOTHER
    THEMSELVES WITH THE TRUTH AND WITH THE CONSTITUTION. THESE IDIOTS SHOULD
    ALL BE SHOWN THE DOOR.

  14. Clark

    Keep up the bad work orange county ..keep up the bad public puppet service on wasting more of taxpayers money time after time they will be bankrupt AGAIN …..oc is the biggest showcase as to punitive registry ..their greed under color of law violating peoples Constitutional rights is proof registry is punitive …this can be the greatest HomeRun for everyone ..Whewwwwwwwwwwwww..!

  15. Jo

    Here is my letter to her…

    Hello Megan,

    My name is J. I am 48 and the father of 3 amazing
    kids, 25, 23 and 21. My oldest recently returned from servicing
    in Libya, and my other 2 are hard working, productive kids. I have
    a wonderful relationship with them.

    I am a business owner, and plan on expanding into Orange County
    in the next few months as well.

    I am someone who falls under the “registered citizen” moniker.

    I was reading your article about the park ban and how, despite the
    recent State Court rulings, they are yet again rolling it out in the face
    of the State ruling. So often, the news outlets are mouthpieces for
    the politicians, helping get the word out for them and drumming up
    support. But isn’t great reporting unbiased? Shouldn’t or wouldn’t you
    want to see what is behind this, and why, instead of just repeating
    the rhetoric?

    I offended 20+ years ago, did my time, have been trouble-free and
    law abiding since that time. I was a beat down 20 something with low
    self-esteem from being raped, and I put myself in a compromising
    position where I hurt someone else. While it was not violent, it was
    100% wrong and I took and take full responsibility for my actions.

    But when does that end? I didn’t receive a life sentence, and yet, here
    we are again, being threatened with loss of our restored civil rights. I
    love to surf, and travel down to the area, stay in hotels, eat at restaurants
    and frequent the beach. I spend money in local businesses. I am not
    interested in offending, those scars are healed and in the past that fueled
    my actions. How is this bill going to do anything to protect anyone?

    I searched and searched online and haven’t really found anything about
    a sex offense being committed by a sex offender in the park or beach in
    Orange County. What I do find is grandstanding and inflated recidivism
    numbers and straw man accusations designed to stir up the uninformed
    and raise hysteria for political gain.

    So they pass this law against “us”, what next? Who next? Banned from
    stores, banned from malls, banned from restaurants, banned from the
    movies? These are the same people who passed an ordinance which was
    found unconstitutional, and now they are trying to put that power, unabated,
    right back in their hands to do it all over again.

    There are two sides to every store. “We” are easy targets. Why not take
    a look at the villains here and you may find behind that huge shadow is a
    non-existent issue.

    Respectfull
    J

    • MS

      Your email to her was great. I believe it will give her something to think about.

    • Janice Bellucci

      Thank you, Jo, for your articulate and well reasoned letter to the reporter who wrote this article. You showed up, stood up and spoke up! Please keep sharing your views with reporters, elected officials and anyone else who needs to hear the truth.

    • John B

      JO, good work. Keep at it.

      I too have 3 well-adjusted, healthy, happy, productive adult children. All were born years after the completion of my sentence. Additionally over the years I participated in raising several nieces and nephews who lived with us for varying periods of time. All love me and are highly grateful for my influence on their formative years.

      Imagine if I were starting out now and the community uproar over my involvement with “the children”. I feel so badly for younger RC’s who might “only” be 10 or 12 years past their problems, and for what their children will have to suffer through due to these unjust laws.

  16. Gerald

    FEAR IN AMERICA! BREAKING NEWS!
    Headline: Orange County terrorist threaten parents wanting to protect and supervise their innocent young children while they play in public parks.
    How can we let this happen? Step up and stand up! Our children deserve this.

    • Janice Bellucci

      And Gerald, I appreciate your sarcasm. You hit the nail on the head. Too often the media and elected officials use fear to control the behavior of individuals.

      • Gerald

        Thanks Janice. It’s unfortunate that our civic leaders aren’t as astute as you.

  17. Bruce

    Hello This IS very Interesting Ruling In New York about Municipalities NOT being able to rule that which is Federally controlled Already..READ THIS JUST OUT TODAY!:http://www.recordonline.com/article/20150217/News/150219388

  18. Mike

    “People’s civil rights are being violated extensively, and there’s no increase to public safety,” Bellucci said, citing statistics from the California Sex Offender Management Board that say most sex offenders – 93 percent – victimize children they know, and that few – 1.8 percent – commit sex offenses after paroled from prison.”

    Hmm, did they quote you correctly Janice, it seems like they spun the statistics to make them sound like the 93% rate directly applies to “most sex offenders” making an implication that this offense rate applies to those already on the registry, rather than “93% of sex offenses are committed by someone the victim already knows, the majority of these offenses are *NOT* committed by someone already listed on the registry.”

    Don’t let them get away with mis-quoting or re-spinning the statistics!!!

  19. FED UP

    Janice,
    Do you know if the young female reporter who attended the LA meeting (two meetings ago) ever wrote an article regarding our plight?
    Thanks!

  20. David

    See p.17 of the Mosley decision ‘re: parks as public spaces and traditional public forums, etc. Can these arguments be used to defeat AB201?

  21. David

    So what is the legal/statutory definition of “presence”?
    If I drive by a school or park, I am technically “present” for that minute or two while driving past. Is the ten minutes that it takes me to walk my dog on a street two blocks away (but still within 2,000 feet) considered “presence”?
    I had read somewhere on this site that 3 hours is considered “residency” by the County of Los Angeles. So what does L.A. consider “presence”?
    What a cluster-mess! I’m imagining every county, city, town and hamlet in California having there own definition of “presence”. (Not to mention each having a list of selected “no presence” places.
    These politicians would be wise to quietly withdraw their proposed bills in light of the Taylor decision.

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