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CaliforniaJanice's Journal

Janice’s Journal: A Step in the Right Direction

The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR), not know as an ally of registered citizens, took an important step in the right direction on March 26 by declaring that they will apply the recent Taylor decision statewide. In the Taylor decision, the California Supreme Court ruled it is unconstitutional for CDCR to levy residency restrictions against all registered citizens on parole as a blanket condition. Also in that decision, the Court provided CDCR with discretion to levy residency restrictions on a case-by-case basis.

CDCR’s decision to apply the Court’s decision statewide could benefit thousands of registered citizens if and only if they exercise their discretion wisely. That is, if they levy residency restrictions only on those who pose a current danger to public safety. That category could include those who have “recently” committed violent offenses and are not yet rehabilitated. The category should not include those who have committed non-contact offenses, such as public indecency and sexting.

The media has expressed great interest in CDCR’s decision, including articles in the Los Angeles Times and interviews on both Fox TV and National Public Radio (NPR) stations. There will even be a one-hour panel discussion regarding this decision broadcast on KCRW, an NPR station, on March 30.

Thus far, the media attention has been balanced in large part and even favoring the rights of registered citizens in small part. The media has chosen wisely to focus on the facts related to residency restrictions such as the significant increase in the homelessness rate of registered citizens since the passage of Jessica’s Law and the resulting decrease in public safety.

We are encouraged by CDCR’s decision and the media coverage of that decision as well as by decisions of Riverside County and the City of Downey toward repeal of their existing residency restrictions. It is important to note that residency restrictions in those communities apply not only to parolees but to all registered citizens.
If more cities and counties follow the example set by Riverside County and the City of Downey, there will be no need for a series of lawsuits challenging residency restriction. If, however, the example set by Riverside County and the City of Downey is not followed, there will be a need for many lawsuits. California RSOL and similar organizations are preparing to meet that challenge if necessary.

– Janice Bellucci

Read all of Janice’s Journal

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Thanks for the update Janice. Very appreciated.

YOu’d think that since there are way more registered citizens out and off of Parole, they would come first to loosen the res. restriction(s). Besides, they having to been out, some for decades, continually being punished (more than murders and other physically maiming and disfiguring others) but yet they undure this website and negative adornments. Why are NOT Murder’s and others so permanent killing and loss of limb and eyes convicts not on a website??? Especially the DUI folks that are repeat offenders that KILL others and just get manslaughter and the drugs sellers that physically hurt and permanently visible… Read more »

How does this ruling affect the stay on residency restrictions in Los Angeles county? Is that stay still in effect? I can’t seem to find any information anywhere and am nervous as to how this ruling might be misapplied/abused by parole and probation officers. In child pornography cases, for example, when the parolee has not produced the material or ever touched a child, the way the ruling is worded, the parole officer may demand that residency restrictions be applied to the parolee since the c.p. often involves people under the age of 14.

The Los Angeles County stay is not by the CDCR. This action is simply CDCR and solely for those still on parole. It has no effect on that stay.

Janice, is it possible that this is just a cynical move by the CDCR, wherein they simply order their officers to glance at each individual case and then quickly stamp them as “restrictions required” and thus be able to say they are doing it on a “case by case” basis? Seems like this might be seen by them as a more efficient way of getting around the court ruling than challenging it legally.

That’s pretty much my question. This doesn’t seem like a good thing at all. It simply gives individual parole officers more power.

I am more optimistic the registry will be ruled unconstitutional in the next 5-10 years. The current rulings are just a piece of the puzzle leading to the inevitable. Thank you Janice and crew for all that you are doing.

They can no longer hang their hat on the recidivism argument; nor the it’s already “public information to begin with” nonsense. They are running out of trees to hide behind and are scrambling daily to justify the Megan’s Law train wreck of futility.

Knowing where someone lives simply does not minimize risk, mush less enhance pubic safety. It it weaponized hatred by association, little else.

The proponents for the registry need to be attacked daily with this.

I agree with Hookscar. The entire SOMB, I call them SOB’s, are breaking the law and what they require to register as a sex offender is so unconstitutional. Their judgment day will come but that is not my place to say that. That is God’s territory and I trust he will reward those that were unjustly punished on earth by man. If we continue to allow this illegal registry to continue, the average general public is not aware that they are creating this to happen to them in due time. The ones in power have a plan and this is… Read more »

If you want to hear the panel discussion KCRW is out of Santa Monica on 89.9 FM.

Not sure how powerful the radio station is. Might not even get out of L. A. county. But worth a try.

I wonder what time?

The panel discussion will begin at 2:30 p.m. on Monday.

You can listen online. Just search KCRW Santa Monica…

I’M POSTING THIS IN TWO PARTS – sorry, AS ONE PART IT KEEPS GETTING A 404 ERROR: Thank you for the perspective, Janice. However, I see some of the comment as a bit misguided. I expect it is simply oversight, not attitude. It reminds me of the previous correct decision to stop using the term sex offender and instead call them registrants — after all, they no longer are offenders, no registrant is, someone who is an offender is prosecuted and jailed, not left free and registering. Only those who are not offenders are registrants. The spot I note is:… Read more »

Damn this 404 error – it won’t let me post the rest! Damn it. Now you have only half of it. Hmm, unless I can get it in below this using the new edit function: It’s easy even for us to lose sight of our grounding on these issues, under the cacophony of slander and libel and hyperbole and lies and misinformation and screaming going on about registrants. But a child molester is not automatically more likely to reoffend than someone who committed indecent exposure, or who downloaded simulated child porn, or some other lower level offense. Consider, even CA… Read more »

It all sounds really good, although I do have some misgivings. If it turns out to be the individual parole agent who is deciding who does and who does not have to live under these residency restrictions I see a great potential for abuse by the individual parole agents making these decisions. Let us not forget the utter BS this whole residency/presence restriction phenomena is. Also, let us not forget that the CDCR (they really do need to drop the rehabilitation part; really, they do) is staffed by a group of individuals making up the whole. These individuals all have… Read more »

It is very possible that few if any will ever get that assessment. It would require a huge bureaucracy to assess them all, and the money that costs. I note, pretty much everything about sex offender registration is done as a blanket policy! This argument could extend to other things. But I’m afraid the court will only require individual assessments for the most egregious things, not for registration itself. But even registration itself is applied by blanket policy,with the registrant not allowed any due process to even argue against it. The court have ruled it is not a due process… Read more »

Another point is that in mosley the AG states that its the position of the AG and therefore the people that residency restrictions only apply to parolees and no one else and even the court states that that is the position of the AG so therefore no prosecuter can pursue charges in any court in CA if its the states and therefore the peoples position that the restrictions only apply to parolees. Am I missing something. It would be impossible to prosecute someone if the state has stated its position allready on record and with the supreme court even restating… Read more »

I agree. At this point no city or county is ignorant enough to arrest someone for residency or presence restrictions. Nevertheless, even the ones which have repealed their ordinances may still try to intimidate you. Your right, “CA Attorney General Kamala Harris argued that residency restrictions are constitutional, but should only be applied to sex offenders while on parole”. With this statement and the fact that the Supreme Court has now said it is unconstitutional for parolees, is just a matter of time that this part of Megan’s List is behind us.

Mike, I’m not sure about all you said. However, one point to understand is the difference between when the AG staff or office states an opinion, whether in a press conference or when arguing a case in court, and when the AG formally issues and publishes an official opinion of the AG. The latter is citable in court, the former is not. I’m suspecting the AG opinion you are referring to was of the former kind, so not worth much.

LA Times Website today has put up an editorial in support of the state and court decision last week nixing blanket residency restrictions on sex offender parolees: This is very supportive and argues for common sense, pointing out that it is wrong to think that registrants across the board are child molesters, are likely to reoffend, or are any kind of danger to children, and that in any case, residency restrictions like this only make matters worse, not better, that making people homeless is only going to make them more likely to be a problem and will leave them… Read more »

Read the article and things are changing. I do have a thought though….it has not happened to me but…. Has anyone been a victim of identity theft by being on the registry? We have our addresses, names and other “personal” information listed. Granted a SSI number is the grail, but I think there is enough information to help.

Somewhat off topic but relevant.

Ariz. governor vetoes bill shielding cops’ names

“The simple fact remains that we live in a world where misinformation can put everybody in jeopardy, especially police officers,” state Sen. John Kavanagh said last week. “And until we get those facts straight, we need to shield those cops and their families from being assassinated by lunatics or political zealots.”

I aid really like some feedback from Janice or chance or anyone with a legal background on the following motion I am preparing. If you have the time I would really appreciate it thanks. I the plaintiff Michael …………… do hereby bring forth this motion for declaratory and injunction relief in the superior court for the county of sacramento in the state of California. This motion is being brought forth as a as applied challenge to the constitutionality of the sex offender registration requirement and notification laws on the state and federal levels in my personal situation. Introduction I’m asking… Read more »

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Anonymous Nobody said “LA Times Website today has put up an editorial in support of the state and court decision last week nixing blanket residency restrictions on sex offender parolees” I would give the L.A Times editorial a 100% rating on support for the state ( CDCR ) interpretation of the California Supreme Court ruling, and a 90% rating on support for the California Supreme Court ruling. The LA Times editorial supports the CDCR’s decision to interpret the California Supreme courts specific determination that blanket residency restrictions on parolee rso’s be done on a case-by-case basis, as meaning that replacing… Read more »

I hope you do not feel I am picking on your posts, but I have been tracking this issue myself for a while now… Anonymous Nobody said “This is very good, especially coming from the LA Times, which in recent years has been thrashing sex offenders, doing all possible to reinforce the idea they are all the same, they are solely parolees, they are predators after children, they have a high recidivism rate. Now, out of nowhere, they put up a very well considered and honest editorial.” The LA Times, when putting out editorials representing their opinions have been quite… Read more »

No, I don’t mind you “picking” on my post at all. Hey, that’s why I posted it, to inform people it was out there. You show some understanding of the inner workings at newspapers. Yes, the Times editorial staff is separate from the reporting staff, and the columnists pretty much everywhere get a lot of leeway to speak their minds that reporters don’t get. I haven’t seen the Times do many editorials on registration issues, but I haven’t been trying to track them on that. When I have seen it, they might say something positive, but then seriously qualify that… Read more »

Another fallacy I need to point out with the media…The media often print the comments of some moron, usually a politican who will say of the judges who decided something in favor of registrants in any way, be it giving them a sentence the politician thinks is too lenient or deciding some sex offender law is unconstitutionally cruel and unusual, which amount to “well, I bet that judge would not want that sex offender moving next door to him, Lets see how he’d like that.” Implying the judge is the only one in the world who claims he could put… Read more »

The LA Times’ George Skelton opposed prop 35. And here I had him pegged. And come to think of it, Steve Lopez was mostly a cheerleader for the victims in the Catholic Church scandal, but didn’t get into blanket hatemongering with support for anti-rso laws like George Skelton did back in 2006. So as far as the L.A Times, would you say its only the reporters of news stories recently who are not representing the truth on registrants? Lying by omission, reporting on otherwise worthless stories if not for being able to use the term ‘sex offender’ in the story… Read more »

Call me cynical if you must, but I notice that the slew of fairly presented articles came about BECAUSE the court ruled, more or less, in our favor. To wit, they probably had all this information all this time, probably much of it from myself who’s been sending this type of information since 2006. So I sense that they feel the situation is inevitable, so now THEY are trying to come out and say “Well, of COURSE we need to look at everything rationally; we don’t need residency restrictions and never did.” But a month ago they would have run… Read more »

How does this affect federal parolees and probationers?

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