The sex offender registry: a non-punitive civil regulatory scheme

[ 5/22/18]

Keep that in mind. Keep repeating it. A non-punitive civil regulatory scheme.

Civil, not criminal. The requirement to register is triggered by a criminal conviction, both felonies and misdemeanors, but the requirement to register is not part of punishment. It is non-punitive. So ruled the Supreme Court well over a decade ago.

It is a Non-Punitive. Civil. Regulatory. Scheme.

And yet, in many states, failure to register and even infractions in adhering to the registration procedure will land one in jail. Several years ago in Texas, Josh Gravens was on the verge of being behind bars, facing up to 25 years’ imprisonment, for a minor technicality – Failure to Comply with Registration Requirements, which in Texas and other states is a felony. He was at the registration office to update a change of address when he was arrested because he hadn’t followed the procedure of registering the new address seven days before the move, which is the law.

As the move was precipitated by a sudden marital separation, Josh hadn’t known seven days previously that he would be moving. Didn’t matter. This had occurred once before during a month’s work trip when he failed to register his temporary address in another state in time. This would have made his third felony charge, the first being at age twelve for inappropriate touching of his sister.

He fought it and was successful.

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Another scheme of political correctness of saying that the registry is non punitive, which needs to be stopped, and be called for what it is whether we like it or not. The registry is the continuation of punishment not because of safety but simply because we refuse to let things go. We let fear and intimidation of the “stranger danger” and the “frightening high” recidivism phenomenon manipulate us to believe that the registry is the answer for safety, which is not true based on scientific and historical evidence. What we need to watch out for are politicians that pass bad laws, and vigilantes that use the public registry to attack anyone on the registry.

So… Part 1 of the California Penal Code is titled:


Under which is Title 9, under which is PC290.

How is PC290 not considered punishment, when it is defined in the body of law dealing with punishment (It’s defined in the Penal Code, not the Civil Code), under the part of that code dealing with crimes and punishment?

Just curious… Seems like it’s clearly defined as punishment in writing…

Indentured to a computer\machine\ property. Clearly intended to impose affirmative bars to legal activities. Constitution be damned, at least in real time. Trump attacking deepstate. Press attacks Trump. Declining national moral….unfavourable debt load. Sick sick sick. They actually believe electronics will cure social ills. Big data indeed!

“sex offender” registration is Quasi-criminal at the very least… where is the lawyer that will actually just say it to the Court? Civil regulatory scheme my ass!

Registrants often spend time locked up even when they are not actually convicted of even guilty. Based upon the first offence.

He fought and won but the come to did not protect him in real time. Therefore no social contract exists. Welcome to the free for all.

Respectfully, I am not a sexual predator

It’s fine to enforce the law, but please stop treating me as if I were actually a sexual predator. I know, of course, and you should know, that I am not. If I am, then charge me with a crime.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

Being investigated thoroughly and being found unchargeable with any crime, in effect, innocent, does not save you. Someone somewhere thought you were a “risk”, and the social engineering laws were passed.

And the crimes are vastly different from anything you have ever imagined. If your crime was looking at things on a computer, you will be treated as if you were a violent predator.

Why isn’t it sufficient to punish a person for their crimes? What legal precedent is there for projecting the horrendous upon those not even charged with the crime? It is no longer necessary to prove something: it is sufficient to declare you a “risk”.

In 2008, Robert W. Pratt, a U.S. district judge in Des Moines, Iowa, wrote that the sentencing guidelines for child pornography crimes “do not appear to be based on any sort of [science] and the Court has been unable to locate any particular rationale for them beyond the general revulsion that is associated with child exploitation-related offenses.”

I was convicted of committing crime “A”. That makes me a risk of performing crime “A” again: that is recidivism. But this is not about recidivism any more.

It used to require a legal investigation – the gathering, analysis and presenting of legal evidence – charges to be presented to defendants and argued in court, before a judge or jury, and a legal verdict arrived at. That is the legal process we are all familiar with. That is the legal process that 242 years of our legal history have constructed, the legal system we consider to have made America great.

None of that is necessary any more. It is not required under some new laws that have been passed. If I was convicted of crime “A”, that now makes me a risk of performing crimes “B”, and “C” and “D”, and “E” and … almost anything, actually.

Under these new laws, it is not required to prove anything; it is not even necessary to bring any charges, present any evidence or make a conviction.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

The fundamental aspects of punishment will be applied, while judges and courts grapple with the situation by asserting that a sex offender register is not a “punishment”: it is a “condition of release” from incarceration.

So what are the aspects of this new extra-legal “non-punishment”? Your freedom to travel is restricted; your ability to enroll at the university is restricted; you are required to warn prospective employers that you are a (dangerous) sexual offender – grouped together with psychotic rapists and murderers.

Judges are divided: some cast 290 registration as a punishment, some assert it is not a punishment, but a “condition of release.” The state of Michigan contended “It is not intended to punish and does not otherwise impose effects similar to punishment.” It is “regulatory not punitive.” The appeals court ruled that they were unquestionably major in their impact and unquestionably punitive and struck them down. The court compared them with ancient banishment laws and laws aimed at public shaming.

The court added there was no credible evidence that such laws prevent recidivism or really protect the public. Rather, Batchelder wrote, they are “retributive,” marking “registrants as ones who cannot be fully admitted into the community.”

You are raised up to shame and condemnation before the community for “crimes” you have not committed. And the community is so misinformed, but that is another subject we can come back to.

You’re not guilty of something: you’re just smeared with guilt and raised up for the censure of the public as they see fit. So it has become necessary to pass new laws warning people that it is a crime to physically assault a registrant.

And all the assumptions that come into play and override the simple fact that you have not committed the crime for which you are being restricted, regulated, and controlled.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

I haven’t had an opportunity to provide any information or make any input into the process of evaluating my relation to the community.

The last thing the judge said, before I was to enter my plea (of no contest) was “You have been given your rights. You understand you may remain silent, have a right to an attorney, everything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law.”

At that time, it was a little bit late for me to be “read me my rights,” I think. I had already entered a confession. I was denied my rights up until that point by a calculated approach to confuse me, intimidate me, lie to me, trick me any way they could, into confessing, while obeying the law in the least possible and technical sense. But they are forcefully set against the spirit of the law, which was written to right the balance of power, when a defendant is up against police, investigators, prosecutors and judges. They clearly violated the spirit and intentions of the law, while giving it lip service.

I have had no defense at any point in time. My attorney’s purpose was only to guide me through procedurally. She never addressed any of the substantive issues or charges in any way. For $5000 she had no intent to defend me. She would seek a deal with the prosecutor. There would be no trial.

“An essential function of the adversary system, therefore, is to maintain a free society in which individual human rights are central. In that sense the right to counsel is ‘the most precious’ of rights, because it affects one’s ability to assert any other right.”

“In its simplest terms, an adversary system resolves disputes by presenting conflicting views of fact and law to an impartial and relatively passive arbiter, who decides which side wins what. In the United States, however, the phrase ‘adversary system’ is synonymous with the American system for the administration of justice–a system that was constitutionalized by the Framers and that has been elaborated by the Supreme Court for two centuries. Thus, the adversary system represents far more than a simple model for resolving disputes. Rather, it consists of a core of basic rights that recognize and protect the dignity of the individual in a free society.”

You have never heard any defense from me. You have only heard one point of view.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

“I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.” Patrick Henty, Voltaire, François-Marie Arouet

Proverbs 18:17 “In a lawsuit the first to speak seems right, until someone comes forward and cross-examines.”

The law is imperfect, justice is imperfect, people are imperfect, but the truth remains the truth.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

In any case, what does it say for our constitutional democracy to emasculate Miranda, settle 94% of criminal cases outside of court by plea bargains between law enforcement and unrepresented suspects, enact laws based on hunches about human behavior, rewrite the laws regarding what constitutes a legal “threat”, reverse the presumption of innocence into a presumption of guilt, and then punish designated individuals for something that they have not done, even after their investigation found that result?

Here is the legal equivalent of the “two step.” We don’t just directly punish people for things they have not done: we take two steps to do it. First we label them a threat; who can argue with that? Then we “guard the community” against the threat. Then we say the restrictions placed on the individuals are not punishments but merely “conditions of release,” while registration is in many cases has the most severe effects on people.

It all seems nice and legal while it violates the fundamental principles of law enforcement, the civil liberties of the individual, the Constitution, and makes the community less safe, rather than more. But the public loves it, and the politicians who are “tough on crime” are re-elected. And thus, everything bends to the political winds, and America, the last bastion of democracy, waffles.

Assault with intent to commit bodily harm, kidnapping, human trafficking, murder and rape are serious crimes. The burden of proving guilt has been circumnavigated and replaced by an assumption of guilt. And you are branded for life, irrespective of anything you might do.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

I was investigated, and no charges could be brought. They cleared me by finding no evidence that I have contacted, attempted to contact or had any paraphernalia even associated with contacting – thus no means to contact.

I am 67 years old and have no prior offenses, arrests or convictions: no felonies, no misdemeanors. Why in the world would I start now, facing sure discovery and imprisonment? I think that one would need to be insane, and I am not insane.

Far from having a negative record as a citizen of this country, I have a positive one. For example, I fulfilled my military obligations by serving in the Naval Reserve six years and was honorably discharged. I paid my taxes.

I do not use any drugs or illegal substances and I don’t drink alcohol, things that are counted against you as increasing your risk to the community, if you do them. I would assume, therefore, that not doing them decreases your risk.

I have complied with all the requirements of my probation, including 52 weeks of counseling with lowest risk rating overall and a polygraph test with pass no comments, paid my monthly bills, attended my monthly meetings, was available for probation officer to visit me, opened my house for Alhambra detective search. I have complied with all requirements of my probation, have committed no new offenses, of any kind, and received the lowest ratings on “risk assessments.”

I own my home where I have lived for 33 years, indicating stability and responsibility, I think. Vagrants, step fathers and Catholic priests pose a greater threat, and I am none of these.

I live in a condominium where my neighbor’s front door is three feet away from mine. We often leave them open for the breeze. I can hear them, and we can see each other when we come and go.

I rent my spare bedroom and have two, sometimes three, adults in my house at all times. Only a drywall separates us, our doors are next to each other, and the doors are cheap.

I have 20 doctors and 33 years of diagnoses that never indicated antisocial, violent or predatory nature. I will document this if desired.

“California uses dynamic and violence risk instruments that help improve predictive accuracy of risk of re-offense when considered together.” I am glad that risk of violence is assessed, because I must have scored a perfect zero, that is, zero risk. I cannot think of a single factor in my life that would pose a risk to others. The most violent thing I have done is play American football, and as twice season MVP, I did pose a definite risk to our opponents.

I care very much about other people’s feelings and have provided records of my charitable giving and work.

I have given half a million dollars to charities and families and individuals overseas since 1992. That is not usually the profile of lacking empathy for others or for sociopathic or psychopathic persons, I think. It just doesn’t fit well with the profile of someone who wants to hurt others. But it boggles people’s minds, and they find it hard to believe, hard to believe than anybody could actually do good.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

I have poured out empathy and real caring support for others for the past 25 years. Here are detailed records of my giving to registered charities, churches and direct aid to impoverished individuals, families and communities in the world.

I only mention it for the record, to establish some factual basis for how I live and have lived. It could be said that I got something in return for my giving. John Anderson got his name on UCLA’s business school for $15 million. The Rockefeller Fund, the Carnegie Fund, the Gates Foundation all are public knowledge and bring goodwill, at least, to their founders and/or their families and descendants. There is no Courtney business school, foundation or fund. There is just me.

In the beginning I gave mostly to my church, $48,000+ and other churches as well. But I gave $3000 to Smile Train, $1000 to Disabled Americans Veterans, $177,540 over the years 1992-2010 according to my best records and knowledge. Every donation and gift has been identified with an infallible audit trail to original documents and bank records – all open to you, should you desire to examine them.

In 2010 I started sending money to the Philippines. My recipients there include about 10 families and various individuals in them. I have provided five homes, five or six college educations, paid dental and medical bills, paid gas, water and electricity bills, paid for the internet, bought cell phones, motorcycles, TV’s refrigerators, clothes washers, travel expenses, even taxes and occasional penalties, in order to fulfill a commitment I have made to myself and to them, to stand by them and create a better life.

From 2010 to the present I have sent over $303,000 to the Philippines, but it is an ongoing thing. Together with donations to charities, I have given half a million dollars. But why would I do that, and did I get anything in return?

I did it because it was so “doable”. I want to make life better, not worse and suffer from bipolar disorder myself. I can’t get a professional job, at least at this stage of my life, but I can give my money away!

I get smiles, love and gratitude in return. I see lives growing stronger and healthier. I see opportunities opening up. And I am a part of it. I have gained a large family of my own. I did not have children of my own, and my beneficiaries in the Philippines have become my adopted family.

Strange that people criticize what I try to do. They would praise me if I drove up in a new $100,000 Mercedes, but they criticize if I give the money away to others? I believe we are supposed to so that, to share what we have, to help a neighbor or a stranger in need. I believe there are enough resources in the world to feed every hungry mouth and to house every naked head and to treat every known disease, if people would do just one thing, but it is something they do not want to do, and that is, share and give.

The sad way of the world is that we want to all live in marble palaces and have our name in lights. We want the praise of others and a high social standing. We want to things that are advertised to us. The more we see, the more we want. I don’t want anything. I am strange. I live on the very least money possible. I hate spending money on myself. I save every penny I can, and apparently, I give it away to others.

But why do I do it? I feel great about it. I am blessed more than anyone else. Greed is the real prison in life, which we all live in, never experiencing the love of an unknown strange. I am ever grateful God gave me something to do with my life. I have a purpose.

Why then would I help people with one hand and hurt them with the other? Why would I give to them with one hand and steal from them with the other? Why would I love them with one heart and hate them with the other?

The answer is that I wouldn’t, nor would anyone. In fact I would say it is impossible. To think that someone who threatens others, is an antisocial predator, who is a criminal threat, would spend his life giving away his personal wealth, is difficult. I think rather it is impossible. It is not done – never has been, never will be.

But motives for giving are mixed and often corrupt. But I gained nothing illicit from giving $48,000 to my church or for serving as its treasurer for 20 years. I received no illicit returns or fame from giving $3000 to Smile Train, just the knowledge that I tried to help those less fortunate than myself.

I have been fortunate in my life. I had two full-time parents who loved us and sent us through the university. I have been blessed with some financial assets because of this and also because of hard work and saving.

But I have a terrible mental illness that attacks me constantly and drains the pleasure and enjoyment out of life. As a consequence of this, I found that nothing I spent my money on could make me happy or even feel good. But I discovered by giving, that I could be very happy seeing others happy and making them happy.

So I live to a large degree from my dream of making life better for others. If I stumbled or committed a crime, it does not change that. There is intention and motive in crime that makes an action a crime. And I never meant to hurt anybody or even thought that I was.

I knew I would never hurt anyone, certainly not a minor or child.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

I have offered statements of reference from six people who are closest to me and know me best. All are positive, supportive and indicating nothing of any wrongdoing on my part.

I completed the 52-week Baldwin Park Counseling sex offender course from Juan Maldonado, MFT, including taking the polygraph test. I passed the polygraph, indicating that “since his arrest he is being truthful about stopping all child porn activities.” I was given an LS-CMI score of 8 = low.

But, bottom line, I would never intentionally or knowingly assault, violate, abuse or harm anyone. I live by a firm resolve in life not to hurt others, and I do not knowingly or intentionally do so.

And that is just a fact. Although subjective in nature, it is still a fact. I have attempted to objectify it here.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

All the laws, the cases, the commentaries and literature describe the efforts of law enforcement to prevent recidivism. Recidivism is recommission of a crime or commission of a similar one.

Somehow law enforcement has managed to expand the concept of recidivism from “similar” crimes to “any” crimes. How they manage to do this is an act of mind-boggling legal legerdemain. Somehow they have managed to punish you for crimes of which you are innocent, for which you have not even been charged, for which, indeed, they cannot charge you.

My experience is that law enforcement overstep the bounds of the law every step of the way. They walk up to the edge, and then go over, but not far enough that they cannot claim they abide by all strictures. They constantly violate the spirit of reasonable and well-established legal precedents, which are bedrocks of our American heritage, while clinging to the letter. Then we preach “human rights” to the world, for which we are universally hated, because they can see the myopic patriotism and the hypocrisy of it.

They want convictions, not truth, forcefully block any attempts at defense, and will receive only negative and incriminating facts and information. Nothing of a positive nature is relevant to them. They assume the worst of everything they see and smear you with that and see if you can wriggle free.

Now law enforcement can do virtually their entire job without appearing in a court of law, without being challenged by a defending attorney, without succumbing to the rigorous standards of evidence, free of the delays, the opposition, the frustration and the cost.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

But this is really nothing new. It is merely something that we had struggled for centuries to erase from society: that is, the arbitrary use of force and the abuse of power in government.

Historically, individuals and regimes encountered legal obstacles to persecuting the Jews. But they found a way around it: pronounce them a threat and require them to register. Then they could “protect the community”, bolstering their own regime – the old two-step. No trial is required.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

Aside from how registration affects me personally, the registry is ineffective. It misinforms the public, when the basic mission is to protect it. It gives them poor quality information that they cannot depend on. It overwhelms the public with false alarms and undermines their ability to guard against the real risks. With a herculean effort, it manages to accomplish more harm than good. And, with all the law and science, it fails to do anything but cost time and money and lives.

“The consensus of that research does not point in the direction of registries reducing sexual crimes or sexual recidivism,” says Jill Levenson, a clinical social worker and associate professor at Barry University in Florida, who studies the way society monitors and treats sexual criminals.

“Employment, stable housing and good social support are the most important factors that help sex offenders reintegrate into the community, Levenson says. But policies like the public registry and residency restrictions make it very difficult for offenders to find work and housing.

“And today in California, thousands are struggling. The California Sex Offender Management Board estimates that there are more than 6,000 homeless registrants in the state, living on the streets, sleeping under bridges, … and impossible to track.”

According to the Office of Justice Programs’ SMART Office, sex offender registration and notification requirements have been implemented in the absence of empirical evidence regarding their effectiveness.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

I am not proposing here that I am a low risk. I am questioning the validity of requiring me to register, in light of the facts. It is, in fact, asymptotic to zero, that I would commit a predatory sexual assault or violent crime.

“Appellate courts generally have upheld such conditions (supervision) as reasonable so long as they are “narrowly tailored” and are “reasonably related” to the effective supervision and rehabilitation of child pornography offenders based on specific facts in the record supporting the need for such conditions.”

Is it “narrowly tailoring” to jump from looking to raping? Are the two “reasonably related”? How were the “specific facts” determined in my case, since nothing I have said or done is considered?

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

The question on Megan’s website FAQ: “Does the risk level of offenders stay the same?”

The answer given: “As offenders successfully live in the community without incurring new offenses, their recidivism risk declines. In general, the expected sexual offense recidivism rate is reduced if the offender has over two years of offense-free behavior in the community. The longer it has been since the offender’s sex offense conviction, the lower the expected recidivism rate, if he has not committed another sex offense or a new serious or violent offense.” What does this mean? Garbeldigoop.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

Law enforcement is succumbing to creeping “Donald Trump-ism.” The fact that they are totally wrong does not seem to concern them. They have an “alternate reality”.

When faced with opposition to their point of view, they “double down” on their point of view, reasserting their version of reality. I am the object of their concern, and I obviously know when something is said about me that simply isn’t true.

But the law does not want to hear my side of the story. They are not concerned with any facts that do not incriminate. And yet they propose to evaluate a person. So they evaluate, knowing a tiny slice of reality and, as a result, see what they want to see.

The result of lacking any opposing point of view results in presumptions, fantasy, imagination, pre-conceived notions, and error. The adversarial judicial process in this country was designed to prevent this. But they are able to completely bypass that now.

Law enforcement greatly dislikes opposition, especially challenges to their authority. It makes their job harder, hurts their ego. They feel “liberalism” has created too may loop holes that allow criminals to go free. They oppose and manage to circumvent those laws designed to regulate them.

The result is that they win more cases, but they came up with the wrong result. I am not a threat to the community. Nothing supports that judgement, except the theory that “lookers become touchers”. They choose to apply this theory and abide by it, and it becomes their reality.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

We know the effect of “pronouncements.” We have seen it all through history, up to the present day. Pronounce something enough times, and people will believe it. Pronounce it enough times, and you yourself will believe it. Without opposition, this is the pathway away from democracy into delusion and authoritarianism.

Further, if you want to know the real position of law enforcement on “threats”, call up your local police department, and tell them your neighbor is threatening you. You will get chapter and verse on what does, and does not, pose a threat or constitute anything that they can act on.

People walk away from encounters like this shaking their heads muttering to themselves, “Well, I guess he’ll have to kill me first before I can get any legal protection.”

The Sex Offender Registry stands in stark contrast to the large body of law regarding threats, the statutes and the rulings regarding legal threats. They seem to have popped up out of nowhere with their own social theories and acting on public hysteria, enact their brand of “prevention” without any legal precedent.

I am not a violent predator. I am not a threat to the community or anyone in it. If the facts are examined, it is clear such a conclusion is untenable.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

But doesn’t the cause justify “tough policing”?

Not at the cost of the law and the Constitution. When those who are officially entrusted to uphold and enforce the law, violate the law, they err twice, once against the law and once against their public trust. The defendant has erred but once.

Proverbs 21:2 NIV “A person may think their own ways are right, but the Lord (God) weighs the heart.”

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

Since 90% of child abuse is done by someone the child knows, I would think that would affect my risk assessment, since I do not have any contact with minors.

But I have never approached a minor, or attempted to, in any inappropriate or illegal way in my life, which is 290’s concern. I am 67 years old now. That I would do so now is long odds. And to the extent that having knowledge of sure imprisonment is a deterrent, I am successfully deterred.

If I were a violent or predatory person, somebody would know it: I live in close proximity to my neighbors and have two full-time adults living with me in the house.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

Further I was investigated (by the FBI, a reputable organization, and found to be innocent of approaching, or making any attempt to approach, or showing any inclination to approach, or showing any interest in approaching, or even being in any circumstances that would allow me to approach. Thus I am found to be innocent but slapped on the registry for life.

They can’t get the real abusers, so they are compelled to create them.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

Flawed logic: any pool of people “poses a risk.” Therefore, to say that “lookers are a risk of becoming touchers” is not saying anything, until the level of risk is somehow determined.

“A risk” really means nothing. I am a risk of assassinating the President. I am a risk of turning blue.

Flawed logic: if you want to get all the risk, include everyone on the list.

I wish they would focus on recidivism. I can accept supervision and controls in that area. But including 311.11(a) offenders on a list with violent predators not the American system of justice.

There is sufficient (abundant) evidence – factual data, information, records, documents – that indicate that I am not a sexual predator. I have tried to present that here.

Do you have a single fact to indicate that I am?

Just to touch on this topic again. Here are my reasons why it is punishment: 1. You have to register within 5 days of your birthday, meaning you can NOT travel or be on vacation during that time (your right to travel has been revoked even if only for that period of time). 2. I you miss your registration, you will face a FTR (Failure to Register) and return to prison. If it were only administrative, you would simply get a reminder in the mail. 3. Sex offenders are being “TARGETED” during compliance sweeps by LE (Law Enforcement). 4. You can’t travel internationally. Sure they say that you can, but you will get turned around since the US will send a notice of your travel to the country you are traveling to. So, NO, you can’t travel freely like the rest of the U,S, 5. Sex offenders are being killed because they are on a public website, Feel free to add to this list.