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MN: Supreme Court Won’t Hear Minnesota Sex Offender Case

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Monday that it won’t hear a challenge to Minnesota’s sex offender civil commitment system (Karsjens v Piper), which allows people who have been deemed sexually dangerous to be committed to a treatment facility for an indefinite period of time. Full Article

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  1. AJ

    This is horrible, absolutely horrible. So now we have the criminal justice system, and then after that the civil injustice system. The State’s power has just grown by leaps and bounds in a very dangerous direction. Their declining this case really, really troubles me. Snyder being denied pales in comparison to this.

    Hopefully some of these men (or the sole woman) pursue “as applied” challenges and can get themselves released.

    • TS

      This would appear to strengthen Missouri’s system also if I recall correctly too…

    • TXSO4Life

      AJ, those men and women are confined within walls. They are not free to move and interact with the public. It will be tough (I see a bit of impossible) to file an “as applied” challenges. I agree this is a HORRIBLE denial of justice, especially after reading the lesser type of “standard” being applied to the lost of liberty as applied to registrants. I hope this denial of cert does not give green light to other states (especially in the bible states) to follow suit and / or copy to Minnesota’s “treatment” program. There was once an idea presented in a few states that all people on the registry should have pink license plate attached to their cars. That is scary. What’s next ? Force all people on the registry to have a required hearing on whether they should be committed to “treatment”?

      • AJ

        Exactly my fears: expansion in any and every direction. The laws move much faster than the courts, too, so even though something could eventually be found unconstitutional, it’s years after it’s been heaped on someone.

        I’m disappointed SCOTUS denied Snyder, but am disgusted they didn’t accept Karsjens…and it will only get worse with a shift to the right when the three elder Justices are gone.

    • AlexO

      This is even more worrying considering how some states are expending whom they can label SVP in order to place people on civil commitment. If anyone wanted a prime example of a loophole, this would be it.

      “Well why don’t you just pass a sentence for a longer period of time?”
      “We can’t because the codes don’t allow it. And then they’d still have an exit time. We want a way to keep someone forever without actually applying criminal law to it.”

      I think an even bigger issue than civil commitment, is that SVP can be applied in cases that had zero sexual factor to it.

      They might as well apply murder charge to burglary (burglary is where no physical victim was involved. A robbery is when one was, like at gun point).

      It’s insane. I think historians are going to be studying this period of law and shacking their heads for some time to come.

      • FRegistryTerrorists

        I can’t say that I disagree with civil commitment 100% but any criminal regime that wants to use it should have to prove beyond any CONCEIVABLE doubt that it is required for someone. Just for one example – there is no way it could be justified for people who have done nothing beyond looking at child porn.

        And personally, I think the fact that the SEX Offender Registries (SORs) and civil commitment are applied to crimes that did not involve SEX is a great thing. If we are going to have BS Registries in the U.S. then we need to try to get millions and millions of families listed on them. There are no legitimate excuses to have SORs and not 100+ other Registries. That is the main reason we know that the SORs are not really for public safety, protecting children, or any of the other lies. The SORs are for harassment.

        • Tired of this

          I usually agree wholeheartedly with your comments (and I love the name you use and agree completely with that sentiment), but I disagree slightly on your first statement in regards to civil commitment. I think it is never okay to continue to detain someone after serving his duly-imposed sentence- it is basically saying “we have decided to continue imprisoning you for a crime you might commit in the future. We won’t call it imprisonment though, since that would be unconstitutional, but you still can’t leave until we decide you can.” Holding someone for a crime he MIGHT commit in the future is not the American way. It is a very dangerous slippery slope having a government with the power to legally do such a thing.

        • David Kennerly, the Very Model of "Containment"

          I would go further and say that men are being imprisoned for crimes which they MIGHT commit in the future by people who ARE committing crimes today.

        • David Kennerly, the Very Model of "Containment"

          Well, I am sure that civil commitment is 100% unconstitutional and this organization’s position should be that it must be eliminated entirely. In this we must be absolutely unequivocal.

        • AJ

          @David Kennerly:
          Though I, and I’m sure many on here, agree with you, sadly the old folks in the black robes think it’s perfectly fine. The use of “civil” in the courts has gotten us so far off track. Couldn’t get a conviction in criminal court with reasonable doubt? File a civil case, and win on preponderance of the evidence. Want to prevent speeders, but having cops do it is too cumbersome?
          Change it to a civil code violation by the vehicle. Think someone is up to something shady, but can’t (or don’t want to) prove it? Civil asset forfeiture takes care of that. Don’t like that RCs/animal abusers/DUI-ers got a sentence less than you like? That’s okay, just make a civil registry to cover that. Sadly, the courts continue to enable this sort of behavior by subjecting civil laws to rational basis review (the absolute weakest level of scrutiny). All a legislature has to do is say the magic words of, “it is the intent…” and courts crumple. (Like any legislature is ever going to say anything else?!?) This country is destroying its citizens rights one civil law at a time.

          Just remember, a civilization that keeps telling you what you cannot do will eventually become a civilization that tells you what you must do.

      • Timmmy

        Maybe time for them to file a slew of Writ of Habeas Corpus

    • Lovecraft

      I was going to echo this sentiment. I wasnt surprised when scotus didnt take snyder, I was shocked when they didnt take the minnesota case. This truly is a dark day and you are absolutely right, the states just gained enormous power over rc’s. Maybe they will try and apply this retroactively down the road. I guess the precedent the court is trying to set is something to the effect of the registry is punishment, but only if you are able to dodge being civilly commited. Shame on scoutus!

  2. HH

    What will this mean to lawmakers……..

    Will they try to push for “civil commitment” now when a registered citizen fails to register????? Or is too close to school property??????

    Is this the thinking of the High Court?

  3. mike r

    I think people are reading into this wrong….Or maybe I am.. Although freedom from physical restraint invokes a fundamental right, those fundamental rights are not absolute. That is the actual question that was being asked and argued. Even though it is completely screwed up, and we all know it, there is absolutely no procedural due process claim or facial claim, and they explained all the reasons why there wasn’t. And it just doesn’t reach the high standard the court has set for a substantive due process claim. First off, the only actual fundamental right that they were arguing is the right to freedom of speech and association, of religion, and freedom from search and seizure. The full force and protection of those fundamental rights apply to free citizens of this country, not to persons under custody or in civil commitment. And the following statements would be hard to argue against if the person has already been determined by so called “professionals” to be a public risk to themselves or others.

    To meet this high standard, we have explained that the alleged substantive due process violations must involve conduct “so severe . . . so disproportionate to the need presented, and . . . so inspired by malice or sadism rather than a merely careless or unwise excess of zeal that it amounted to a brutal and inhumane abuse of official power literally shocking to the conscience.” Moran, 296 F.3d at 647 (quoting In re Scott Cnty. Master Docket, 672 F. Supp. 1152, 1166 (D. Minn. 1987)). Accordingly, the district court applied an incorrect standard in considering the class plaintiffs’ as-applied substantive due process claims. D. Substantive Due Process i.

    I don’t agree with it, but those are the high standards that we must prove exist. “so disproportionate to the need presented, and . . . so inspired by malice or sadism rather than a merely careless or unwise excess of zeal that it amounted to a brutal and inhumane abuse of official power literally shocking to the conscience”.

    I think I can prove every aspect of that standard in my motion. That is exactly what we need to focus on…
    Apparently, they must of met those standards in Snyder….
    The Snyder case denial is incredibly important and much more relevant to all of us that are not in custody, on paper, or have not been deemed a sexually violent predator that was sufficient to invoke the civil commitment standard. The following statement is particular important.

    By denying the review, the Supreme Court leaves in place a decision from the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals, which declared that portions of the law are unconstitutional. Noting the lack of evidence that registries actually protect the public, the appeals court held that restrictions added to the law after its original passage cannot be applied retroactively and that the state cannot cast people out as “moral lepers” solely on the basis of a past offense without a determination that they currently present a risk.¹ The state appealed that ruling to the U.S. Supreme Court.

    Issue: Whether retroactively applying a sex-offender-registry law that classifies offenders into tiers based on crime of conviction, requires certain offenders to register for life, requires offenders to report in person periodically and within days of certain changes to registry information, and restricts offenders’ activities within school zones imposes “punishment” in violation of the ex post facto clause.

    That denial speaks volumes man…”Punishment”. That opens the door for so many suits it’s ridiculous…..We can now bombard the courts with all kinds of of other claims such as: cruel and unusual punishment, ex post facto , and as the court already stated, unreasonable, arbitrary, oppressive official actions, Separation of powers, and in every other way. Man, everything I have in my motion is now extremely relevant and all my arguments now have confirmed standing!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Screw the Minnesota case, it wasn’t going to prevail the way it was argued……..I am frigging jumping for joy, AJ and Chris, do you guys see what this means????? The key is that it is now US Supreme Court confirmed “PUNISHMENT”!!!!!!!!<<<<<Amazing

    • AJ

      @mike r:
      Nice job digging into the MN case and laying it out. Yeah, perhaps they did attack it from the wrong perspective. They will need to regroup and figure out how to attack the “we have people we know don’t belong in here, but we’re not doing anything about it” attitude from MN.
      As to Snyder, yes it’s a victory for us. I guess I look at it this way: SCOTUS affirming Snyder would have been a power tool; SCOTUS denying Snyder is a hand tool. Either way, the job can get done, but a power tool is much faster and efficient! (And probably less knuckle-busting, which I believe also to be a fair comparison to future court fights.)

  4. mike r

    This is exactly what we have all been waiting to hear from Scotus. “Punishment”!!!! This is a huge win for us, and a start to the downfall of the registry as it is unless they give each and every one of us hearings to determine if we pose a significant danger to re-offend………I also believe that we have a right to a jury trial since it is a punishment for a crime, prove that I committed the crime for which I am being punished, i.e. my propensity for re-offense..

  5. mike r

    Also preserving my right to appeal, present mitigating evidence during sentencing, right to an attorney, and so on…..

  6. mike r

    Also if they try to subvert my attempt for a fair and just judicial process by using intimidation, procedural errors that I may make, or for any other number of other reasons, and as long as I am proceeding in good faith, then I’ll have an actual procedural due process claim….

  7. Robert Curtis

    This isn’t really surprising is it? Ladies and gentlemen what we have here is a failure to communicate. There must be a painful cost for NOT changing current law and practices against registered citizens before such change is going to happen. What that looks like is hard to see. Perhaps a holistic approach going after those preaching behind the pulpit and holding them accountable for their beliefs. Educating those in Law schools, those studying psychology and at religious seminaries.

    What would it take to get people to talk about such change in salons, barbershops and even behind the pulpit at church? Until somehow it is made personal and directly in the backyard of the average citizen change won’t happen. Stories of decent every day people being convicted and put on the registry is a start because everyone thinks becoming a sex offender is someone else’s problem and such can never happen to them. Our enemy is the “THEM verses US” mentality in society. We need to make it very clear that they (the average citizen) can very easily become one of US in that equation. Police might need to be feared more than respected because sex related charges are very easy to convict. Questions to the average parent: do you really know what your teen is looking at online by cell-phone? Do you know what your child is doing at school? Are you sure that email sent to you doesn’t have CP embedded on it?…so many ways to find yourself or your child on the registry…to sale that truth is easy because we have so many stories to support it.

    It was once said the hardest sale to make for a salesman is burial plots…one top salesman in that industry said, “to sale burial plots you must first make the customer feel the grave.” To sale getting rid of the registry you must make the whole of society fear they or someone they love can be the next listing on the sex offender registry. Sort of a different kind of grave, but think about it.

    Until we registrants harness the resources available to us by our shear numbers and engage in our own communities we are part of the problem but we can be the answer by using the registry as a valuable resource for recruiting and empowering. Together we will make change happen. Perhaps this defeat will encourage us to gather more of ourselves, then Organize and mobilize. Again if you or any of your close family members are on the registry you are no longer a civilian you are a soldier. The sooner we can communicate that to the rest of those on the registry the sooner and better we’ll bring change…one by one, day by Day…Show up, Stand up and speak up as Janice says….engage anyway you can using your own talents and strengths and we all will see a brighter day ahead. Freedom is NOT free…It’s fought for and together we will prevail So help us God!!!!

    • FRegistryTerrorists

      Love your work and passion.

      I had a few comments about your comment:

      I don’t think most people could ever be convinced that they (or someone they love) might end up being listed on the SEX Offender Registries (SORs). I just don’t think most people can get that into their minds. So I personally don’t think that is a very effective strategy.

      The strategy that I prefer is that “the SORs are BS”. And if they are not, it doesn’t make any sense to anyone that we don’t have 100+ other national, public, lifetime Registries. I mean, how it is even conceivable that we don’t have Gun Offender Registries?!! I think if the scumbags that support the SORs could get the rest of their Registries created then they might have perhaps 20 million mortal enemies instead of the current perhaps 3 million. Then the civil war could really get going and they could be seriously harmed.

      Another strategy which I prefer is that I truly don’t think that informed, intelligent, unbiased Americans support SORs. Rubes do. Harassers do. Terrorists do. Little people do. Big government lovers do. The message I like is “If you support the SORs, you are an idiot”, but perhaps said more subtly and nicely. We need some memes for that.

      Lastly, I also like these:

      1. Showing the SORs aren’t protecting people (for example, when someone who is Registered actually does retaliate).

      2. Showing the SORs are wasting resources (for example, when something bad happens that could possibly be prevented if the criminal regimes hadn’t been busy screwing around with their harassment SORs).

      3. Showing the SORs are really harming America, which I know for sure that they are. I’ve intended for years to enumerate how they are harming society at large.

  8. Tim L

    The Cowards punted that’s all! Land of the free home of the brave!

    SORS are for the afraid..

    The real answers is opt for jury trial in registration cases in mass! I’m 1-1 so far. BTW, I know why I opted for trial.

  9. mike r

    Shi….20 million…more like 1/4 of the country would be on a list…nationally 1 /3 of americans have a criminal record….

    Register everyone or no one…..Thats 1/3 of all working adults..That’s 1/3 out of at least 200 million people….do the math…

    • FRegistryTerrorists

      Registering 60+ million works for me. If people have a “right” to know about people who have committed SEX crimes then MFer, I have the right to know about anyone who has committed any serious crime.

      F all people who support the SEX Offender Registries (SORs). I view them as complete un-Americans and enemies to me. I’ve read quite a lot about the Nazis and other people who forcefully entered people’s lives and really harmed them in various ways. I see people who support the SORs in the same way. The scale of their crimes is not as grave obviously but they are no different than previous illegal criminals conducting war. They are harassing my life and my family with no sensible or legitimate reason. I’m demanding that they stop. It’s not optional. Until they do they will pay.

  10. mike r

    jury trials are risky. I wasn’t taking a deal even though I could of had 8 months alternative sentence, i.e. work project, and one charge of 664/288(a), instead went to trial, got railroaded with an incompetent public pretender and a judge who had a selective intro of evidence, got convicted for the attempted 288, but they added 288.2 and 647. Well I git sentenced to the maximum the law would allow, 5 years 4 months in state penitentiary. Do I regret going to trial you may ask? Hell no, what I do regret is not demanding I represent myself and had the courage not to let thrm intimidate me, and coerce me into continuing with my lame as…attorney. That’s what I regret…So if you’re listening and plan on going to jury, I suggest you prepare and fight your own fight, you have absolutely nothing to lose and everything to gain. Fight you’re own fight, don’t expect anyone else to for you becausr it isn’t going to happen. Find any technical reason or use every trick in the book, and don’t think you can’t challenge anything and everything. One shot, thats all you get, even though you’re shooting with a bb gun, shoot for the eyes and as many times as possible.I know that’s a bad metaphor at the moment considering what just happened in Vegas, but it’s the best one I can think of, and the most accurate……Just my story and opinion, everyone has to decide for themself….

  11. mike r

    Could you imagine…60-70 million on some kind of registry?????I have t make sure I bring that up during my hearing, and have some evidence to back up that claim, although it could be considered common knowledge that there are 1/3 working adults with a criminal record….Hmmm, interesting, I will have to think about this a little more, I am sure these stats are usable some how……

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