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California

California eases Jessica’s Law restrictions for some sex offenders

When California voters approved Jessica’s Law in 2006, the goal was simple: to keep sex offenders away from children. The sweeping measure prohibited all sex offenders from living within 2,000 feet of schools and parks where children gather, regardless of whether their crimes involved children.

The law left large swaths of neighborhoods off-limits to these parolees, creating consequences that not everyone expected. Sex offenders were pushed into industrial areas, homeless camps and other remote locations. In Harbor Gateway, officials even built pocket parks to help make larger portions of the community fall under the Jessica’s Law restrictions. Full Article

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  1. sadandmad

    what do you wanna bet the PO’s are gonna come up with some asinine excuse why we don’t qualify?

    “NEXUS” being that we’re SO’s

  2. j

    I wonder if being on parole is better than staying there through the end of the sentence. Although incarceration is living hell, I’m not sure that the conditions of release and parole aren’t a greater burden. If that time after parole eligibility and end of actual sentence can be useful and productive, especially with regard to counseling and job prep, it may be worth it. I know this statement will be controversial, however after a look at the conditions of release and supervision, it may do some better to avoid the entire parole loop.

  3. Edie

    My loved one, who’s alleged crime was against a 21 year old, has been told by his P.O. that because of changes to this law, both residency and presence restrictions will not apply to him. As stated in this article, he will still be required to wear a GPS monitor. My question is why monitor someone that doesn’t have residency and presence restrictions? And Janice & Co., once the dust settles with this tiered registry issue, can we get the wheels in motion to challenge Jessica’s Law???

    • AJ

      @Edie:
      If the GPS was court-ordered, it will almost assuredly take a court-order to get it removed. But beyond that, are there presence restrictions in his supervision? Not allowed in bars, strip joints, etc? Obviously someone has decided he needs to be subjected to “intense supervision” (that phrase always sounds awfully Monty Python-esque to me). Finding out who decided that, why, and to observe what about his behavior would seem to be the best route to get answers…and maybe a removal of that fashion accessory.

  4. Edie

    AJ – This was an out of state conviction, with a sentence that required registration but lacked the GPS requirement (which the state of conviction doesn’t require). His Interstate Compact transferred his post-prison supervision to Calif. Hence, he’s subject to California laws, so I guess you could say it was court ordered indirectly. Due to the Supreme Court case in San Diego, residency and most presence restrictions were lifted. Establishments who primarily serve alcohol are off limits, so I guess that combined with the 50 mile restriction justifies the GPS anklet. While our family is new to this mess, already we see the discomfort and humiliation it will cause for someone who has already paid his dues by being wrongly incarcerated. These laws are so draconian……

    • AJ

      @Edie:
      Being an ICOTS “client,” he must comply with the supervision requirements of both States–meaning CA can add measures the transferring State didn’t impose. That the transferring State didn’t require GPS makes your hunt a little easier, as you can now look wholly within CA rules, regs and laws to see why the GPS. I guess the first thing I would do were I him is ask my PO why it’s required. Doing this in a non-confrontational way is highly recommended. Asking out of ignorance and curiosity will go a long way.
      “Is this GPS thing something I have to wear because I transferred from another State?” would be a good way to start that conversation.

      Beyond that, were I you, I would try to find under what circumstances GPS is required. In some States, it can only be done by a judge at sentencing or as an enhanced measure by a PO if one has violated rules. If he was “banded” immediately by his CA PO, it certainly rules out both these situations. I would next look at how CA classifies his offense. He’s obviously been deemed in need of intensive supervision; I would try to find out under what conditions that is applied. It shouldn’t be too hard to find the offenses that trigger it. Given how CA likes to have all sorts of notification laws about things, I would even suspect there is some notification somewhere in his papers that says under what CA Statute it’s being done. Is it risk based? I assume you know his risk level from the court proceedings. Even if he was deemed low-risk by the transferring State, CA may have determined otherwise. It’s vital to your query to find how CA views him. (I doubt this will be in any paperwork he got.) Offense based? Perhaps. In fact, I would point to the GPS being due to the nature of his offense, which has led CA to consider him high-risk, and not to do with presence/residence restrictions. That’s purely speculation on my part, and assumes low-risk assessment. Mind you, I am not in CA, so there are certainly others on here who will have greater insight into who gets GPS and who doesn’t.

      • someone who cares

        We are in California, and when my husband was released on Probation, the PO put the ankle monitor on him. It was not mandated by the judge or written in any of his court stipulations. I addressed the PO and was told that it was State Law. Upon further research, I saw that State Law requires SOs on Parole to wear an ankle monitor, so obviously, he was mistaken. In any case, the PO made up his own “rule” I guess, and we could have probably gone back to court to ask the judge to add the stipulation if that is what he wanted, but we did not want to rattle the cage. Somebody in his therapy group fought this added stipulation and actually had it taken off, but few of us are courageous enough. As a matter of fact, it may have been better to have the GPS because I think they may have done more home visits had he not been on it. Who knows. I think POs add the GPS to make their jobs a little bit easier, but I don’t think it is a law per se. The stipulations have to be reasonable related to the offense, and if someone has no presence or residency restrictions, I don’t see how a GPS can be justified if were to be taken up with a judge. POs and Judges don’t really follow any laws, though, and will most likely always find a good reason for their decision.

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