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Lawsuits leave us more vulnerable to sex offenders (Opinion)   

Inland dwellers take note: unless state lawmakers take action, registered sex offenders will likely have a great deal more leeway in choosing where they live and congregate in the very near future.

Santa Maria civil rights attorney and one plaintiff, a 62-year-old registered sex offender, have been on a tear over the past year, challenging ordinances up and down the state that bar sex offenders from living near schools, parks, libraries and other public places where children might be. Full Article

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  1. td777

    I tried to post the following on that site, but the site would not accept the post. It seems to be turned off somehow.

    —————————————————
    It is people like you who continue to write articles containing only half of the truth in order to keep the propaganda machine rolling. I understand this is an opinion, but you should at least base your opinion on facts rather than hype and hysteria.

    There are no legitimate studies and no evidence that residency and presence restrictions do anything to reduce sex crimes, though there is suggestive evidence to show they may actually increase crime by putting more stress on registrants which may result in them acting impulsively.

    Yes, there are some registrants who are a threat. That cannot be denied. However, when the true recidivism rate is below 2% according to the California Department of Justice, and the fact that a vast majority of sex crimes are committed by someone known to the victim, it becomes clear that registrants are not the impending threat they were made out to be when politicians were working to get Jessica’s Law passed(when they claimed a recidivism rate around 60-70%). One working with the facts MUST conclude that the “stranger danger” is not what it was made out to be. Are we going to put residency restrictions on family members, teachers, and clergy since they are the group who commit more sex crimes than registrants. Also, are you aware that in recent years, police officers have committed sex crimes in the state of California at a higher percentage than registered offenders? Should we also put residency restrictions on them as well?

    I have no problem with someone having an opinion, I just wish you would be sure to have the ability to back up that opinion with cold hard facts.

    • Harry

      You can email him, Ben Boychuk (bboychuk@city-journal.org.

      • Robin Banks

        Here is what i emailed to Ben:

        Dear Ben,

        I’d like to ask you something: Do you think that an evil person who was intent on kidnapping/sexually assaulting a child from a park/library/video arcade would decide NOT to do so out of fear that he/she would be charged with a misdemeanor for being present in the vicinity? Why on Earth would someone who was determined to commit a serious felony heed a local ordinance regarding presence restrictions?

        Studies show and experts agree that 98% of sexual offenses against children are committed by individuals who are NOT on the sex offense registry and who ALREADY have access to our children. I think the bottom line is this: we need to protect and supervise our own children and not expect the government to do it for us – even as much as politicians would have us believe that is exactly what these laws will do.

        I hate to say it, but I believe you are ill informed and your article is harmful in that it stokes paranoia and feeds a popular myth that stranger abductions are a common occurrence from which we need government protection.

  2. MS

    I just emailed Ben. And I suggest others do the same. Ben like so many others is ill informed.

  3. j

    The gaping hole in boychuk’s logic is that his approach is limited to fear mongering without regard for the punishment that has already been inflicted on registrants. What he is selling is vigilantism and ex post facto punishment on behalf of an uninformed (by design) voter populace. Nowhere and at any time do these “exaggerationists” refer to copious studies done by CDC researchers that have pretty much spelled out that a guy like boychuk, for all intents and purposes, is the one most likely to commit a new registrable offense.

    As long as hyperbole, hate and misplaced civilian punishment vehicles are allowed to be disguised as laws, the constitution remains unrepresented in these lopsided equations. If Lady Liberty can do an end run around politicians’ need to exploit victims of the registry and implicitly and needlessly punish their children, we will be very lucky indeed.

    Hoping that there can be found but one ounce of humanity in lawmakers that they may see both their total betrayal of the constitution and the implicit societal abuse of children of registrants is the real battle here. Our children should not have to pay while illusions of safety are touted by those who have made a mockery of the constitution and the justice system

  4. sadandmad

    at least Ben understands “Here we need to acknowledge that sex offenders are not all the same. A man convicted of statutory rape after a consensual encounter with an underage girl, for example, does not pose the same sort of threat as someone who served hard time for forcibly assaulting children. How should the law prioritize those threats? How should former offenders be treated? Who should be let go and who should remain locked up forever?”

    my statutory rape is MUCH different than those with crimes against children, or crimes involving force.

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