State legislators are debating whether they should make changes in the state’s sex offender registry, which was established in 1998.
Former Republican state legislator Bob Farr of West Hartford and other advocates called Monday for approving the recommendations of the state’s sentencing commission on changes to the registry, which is currently “based on the offense and not on the risk of re-offending.”
The current registry now lists convicted criminals for 10 years, 20 years or life. The registry started with 800 criminals who were placed retroactively onto the list when the registry was created two decades ago. Since then, the registry has grown to include people in virtually every town in the state with more than 6,000 names on the list.
“The public registry would only list high-risk offenders,” Farr said of the proposed changes. “The current registry lists too many names to be functional. … The city of Hartford has over 700 offenders.”
Some lawmakers say the list has become too unwieldy and should be pared down to alert the public regarding the most serious criminals. Farr said that a low-risk elderly person who committed an offense 30 years ago could still be on the list.
They better have the courage to implement what is based on evidence. And discontinue the rules based on lies, myths, bias, and defamatory declarations. It looks like we’ve headed into the right climate where they’re realizing it’s too expensive for them to declare lies at the expense of getting sued.
If they had the courage to “implement what is based on evidence” they would be talking about abolishing the registry, not merely changing it. All changes or amendments to registries ever do is maintain the status quo. In 20+ years of it’s public access, it has yet to play a role in the investigation or arrest of one single crime other than registry or parole/probation violations. Even on the rare occasions where registrants commit another sex offense, he was either ID’d on the spot or his registry status wasn’t known until after arrest. Either way, the registry is completely worthless. Worse than worthless when you consider the constitutional problems and collateral damage to family members and friends.
Good on them for seeing the light and to be working for a positive change. Most people on the registry will never commit another crime, a fact backed up by empirical evidence.