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AR: Sex-offender housing laws raise hitch

Legislators have passed several laws over the past couple of decades that limit where sex offenders can live in hopes of keeping communities safe, but some state officials say such laws often impede registrants from successful rehabilitation.

Arkansas prison officials say they must figure out a better way of housing sex offenders released from prison because a growing number of them are homeless and tracking them has become a national concern.

“They have to go somewhere,” said Dina Tyler, a spokeswoman for Arkansas Community Correction. “The community reaction to sex offenders is usually what you expect, but it leads us back to what do we do with them?” Full Article

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  1. Shawn

    Looks like we are creeping towards concentration camps. Surely that is easier than admitting scotus made a mistake in recidivism risk. Absolutely terrifying

    • Facts should matter

      Megan’s Law is already a silent genocide to begin with. Living a life you don’t want is bondage.

      Yet, they continue to defend it with their “it’s not meant to be punishment” argument! They also love to throw in “it’s not perfect” or “it’s all we have.”

      Such BS!

  2. David

    Did I read this correctly?:
    “laws often impede registrants from successful rehabilitation.
    Arkansas prison officials say they must figure out a better way of housing sex offenders released from prison….”
    Wow! Government personnel who actually give a damn about successful reintegration! I hope they spread the idea that, yes, “they (as in “we”)” have to live somewhere and that successful reintegration benefits the community as well as the individuals.

    • R M

      @David: Unfortunately, we also live (sort of) in society. Public opinion, big mouths, and, money idiots, also influence. The part about “laws often impede registrants from successful rehabilitation.
      Arkansas prison officials say they must figure out a better way of housing sex offenders released from prison….” is refreshing.’

      The prisons are overwhelmed and need somewhere to release those completing their sentences. They are trying to reduce their workload.

      Next problem. We have to live somewhere.

      Reintegration has been sidelined by a false recidivism rate and a “need” to save 1 child. Now they are having to “figure” out what to do with us. IDIOTS.

    • Dram

      They said it and they can’t unsay it. Archive that.

  3. Nicholas

    This article is just like so many before its starts by saying we need to protect….even though they know that the REGISTRY IS NOT LEGAL ! Just because theh make it a law does not make it Constitutional, nor should it be !
    They say reintegration, because THEY ARE STARTING TO LOOK LIKE FOOLS FOR STARTING THESR PROBLEMS, NOT BECAUSE THEY GIVE A D@MN

  4. Eric

    The first thing that we as a political force must do is take action to separate the categorizing of all people on the registry in one category. The public hears the words “sex offender” and they immediately think of the worst case scenario. That would be like calling every one caught stealing as armed robbers. Most people on the registry did a one time incident, and a huge percentage did their offense on that technological marvel called the internet with no contact to the “victim.” Many on the registry did a single incident many years ago, or even decades ago. We hear politicians all the time saying, “Oh, I did that black face thing,” or “I had that affair,” or “when I got so intoxicated it was way back then, so I should be excused.” Many of them never had any consequences for poor behavior, but people on the registry have paid their debt in full, have met every condition of the justice system, and yet are still being labeled and persecuted.

    I think it is critical for people on the registry and family members of them to speak out. I did a single non-contact offense fifteen years ago. I have been employed and housed to the best of my ability under such restrictions since then. I have not had so much as a parking ticket. I am liked by neighbors and fellow employees. Even when the police come over for the yearly compliance check it is an unspoken little nod and wink of, ” Hey, how’s it going, we are here to do our thing again. It is a pain for us too.”

    I find it amazing that with drug users they are getting the opposite treatment. Presidential candidate Butigieg just announced that he would push for zero jail time for drug possession, as if all drug users are nice law abiding citizens that are innocent victims of misfortune. Many may be, but I met a whole bunch of then in prison and some of them are criminal minded people that have very bad intentions. So why is it they are coddled, and yet despite all evidence we are ostracized, hated, harassed, and persecuted?

    • Count D.I.K.ula

      My experience in prison was that those there for drug-related crimes were usually the most dangerous people, at least to people like me. I’m all for drug legalization as I think that drug laws are worse than ineffective and demonstrably destroy lives and weaken society while doing nothing to lessen the problems of drug use but it is very clear that many who end up in prison having violated drug laws represent a violent, sociopathic, Mad Max subculture that was cultivated by those very laws.

      • Will Allen

        I agree with that completely. Obviously it is helping no one that drugs are illegal. No drug should be. In an actual free country at least.

        It just isn’t helping that drugs are illegal. But it has created ALL of the drug violence. It has increased all harms, including deaths.

        But most people in Amerika are too weak and brainwashed to admit even to themselves that drugs should not be illegal. We MUST keep Nanny Big Government big, keep them “protecting” us from ourselves, and keep their drug business running and profitable. We must.

        And while we are at it, we need NBG to “protect” us from $EX.

  5. David

    So here is the foolishness of this fallacy: a registrant can work in a convenience store directly across the street from an elementary/middle/high school, or can manage a laundromat next door to a daycare center, or can have a full-time job across the street from a park or playground. As long as they don’t sleep overnight in those locations, they are not violating “residency” restrictions. So exactly what are these residency restrictions actually accomplishing besides a government-sponsored false sense of security for the unthinking public???

    • R M

      @David: ” So exactly what are these residency restrictions actually accomplishing besides a government-sponsored false sense of security for the unthinking public???” NOTHING.

    • Harry

      Yah, since schools, day care centers and parks have no kids there at night and day in the time they are?????

    • Scotus Save Us Now

      Thats the part that always makes me laugh – you can’t live next to a school but I can work next to one in states with these restrictions. Ironically you are at work while school is in session but typically when you are home it’s night / weekends… The laws assume every registrant isn’t working and is free all day every day – which if that’s the case, that’s a huge issue you’ve created a subclass that is unemployable

      • Will Allen

        There are states where you cannot work near schools, parks, whatever. It’s patent nonsense. It protects no one and only an idiot would believe otherwise.

        The thing that I find hilarious is that Registry Nazis think it is just fine if shooters live by schools. They are fine with shooters in schools. They are dumb liars.

        Only corrupt, criminal regimes have $EX Offender Registries.

  6. AJ

    “They have to go somewhere,” said Dina Tyler, a spokeswoman for Arkansas Community Correction. “The community reaction to sex offenders is usually what you expect, but it leads us back to what do we do with them?”
    —–
    I know what to do with “them”: do exactly as you do with anyone else who has completed supervision. You let them go rebuild their lives. Pretty simple.

    =====
    Level 4 registrants are also prohibited from living within 2,000 feet of any place of worship.
    —–
    Ignoring the fact that AR is like Spinal Tap and has a tier system that goes one higher, what is the rational-basis connection to houses of worship? I’ve never understood how that gets tossed into the the mix. So RCs are attract to people who demonstrate and exercise a faith? Also, given how incredibly simple it is to have the IRS recognize and grant “church” status, what’s to prevent some yokels from creating the House of Bubba the Great within 2000′ of someone they dislike?

    =====
    Before sex offenders can call any place home, they must check in with local law enforcement.

    The sex offender manager has the authority to approve or deny any place a registrant chooses even if it’s outside the 2,000-feet buffer zones, Combs said.
    —–
    How does this even begin to fly? One has to get approval from the government for where one can live?!? I distinctly recall that being one of the many items SCOTUS found to construct Cruel & Unusual Punishment in Weems.

    =====
    Cooke said sex offenders can live in roughly 5% of North Little Rock.
    —–
    This is exactly what the 6th found to be punitive. I wonder what amount of the 5% is actually inhabitable by RCs.

    =====
    Interpretation of the 2,000-feet rule also can vary among police departments, Combs said.

    “Some enforce it by 2,000 feet as the crow flies, and some do it by 2,000 feet worth of street,” he said. “It changes from county to county, to city to city. It could be interpreted differently from the police department to the sheriff’s office.”
    —–
    This is the textbook definition of unconstitutionally vague. If the TBLs cannot even agree on what the law says, how is a citizen of reasonable intelligence supposed to know what’s right or wrong?

    =====
    “However, as a result of sex offenders losing stable housing, they become increasing harder to track but also more likely to commit another crime,” [Sheriff] Woods said. “It seems to be a double-edged sword when you weigh the pros and cons.”
    —–
    Here’s an idea sheriff, get rid of the stupid registry and it all goes away. No more needlessly anxious residents, no more BS “pocket parks”, no more canvassing hundreds of homes, no more increased risk of recidivism. It’s funny how much better a human will behave if not constantly poked and humiliated.

    =====
    [Administrator] Flynn said it’s important for people to remember that the ideal is to create a situation in which the sex offenders will not to re-offend.
    —–
    Isn’t this the ideal for EVERY crime and criminal!? I hate to break it to Mr. Flynn, but that ideal is impossible–regardless the crime, as evidenced by that crime still occurring.

    =====
    A major concern among government officials is an increase in the population of homeless sex offenders.

    “A homeless sex offender is the worst-case scenario,” Stitz said. “The offender is mad, doesn’t have a home and is blaming the world. That is not a good mental state.”
    —–
    You’re the jackasses who created this problem! And gee, what a surprise that someone, RC or otherwise, who is forced into homelessness by society and laws will be angry and out for blood. Again, that’s not specific or unique to RCs. That’s human nature.

    =====

    I will give AR officials credit for seeing the problem as it’s growing. The solution is plainly obvious. Repeal the laws that are creating the problem. The real problem is they’re all afraid to admit it and even more afraid to do anything about it because they so love their positions as legislators.

    • My say

      Not sure the sheriff or even state leg can get rid of it. If i remember correctly, federal stated that if the states don’t comply then they will lose federal funding. They (states) are not going to give that up.

      • Worried in Wisconsin

        Nothing in the federal SORNA regs are about residency restrictions, AFAIK

        • Sc

          @Worried in Wisconsin,

          Correct.

          As far as funding goes the cost of having/maintaining a registry far outweighs whatever funds have been granted. Many states aren’t in “compliance” for that very reason.

          Just guessing here, most of the things States are doing ( ICAC task force, registry, sting ops directly related to anyone on the registry, etc) would cease shortly after Federal funds dried up.

          Hmm… That could be an interesting path of thought.
          Compile a list of the amount of funding a State received per year vs the actual cost of all activities that it was intended for.

          Add that information to the growing list of why registries, etc, are so ineffective.

          Does anyone know how one would go about obtaining this type of information?

    • Count D.I.K.ula

      AJ, “Ignoring the fact that AR is like Spinal Tap and has a tier system that goes one higher, what is the rational-basis connection to houses of worship? I’ve never understood how that gets tossed into the the mix. ”

      It’s not a very good argument for religion, is it, that finds that its adherents are less resilient and more vulnerable, somehow, to the proximity of registrants? One would have to conclude that the church goer is, therefore, weaker and more in need of governmental protection. Indeed, one could reasonably conclude that they favor more government in their lives. But then, the religiously inclined are nothing if not a mass of contradictions, e.g. their support of Trump

  7. NorthEastPENN

    “with doors closed to them”
    “because a growing number of them”
    “what do we do with them?”

    It is so obvious that when using phrases that include the word “them” (within this article) that RCs have become a “class of their own”.

    I don’t see articles relating to “We have to do something with them” when referring to persons that commit other types of crimes such as DUIs (multiple convictions), drug dealers (multiple convictions), robbery (multiple convictions), domestic abuse (multiple convictions), child beaters (multiple convictions) and the list goes on – but be convicted of a s%x crime once, no matter what it is and you are instantly placed in a “class of persons” unique to any other crime. And the ironic part is that because society has not been educated, “Them” (RCs), has the lowest recidivism rate of all other crimes listed above.

    Them Them Them Them – I am tired of seeing this word in articles like this or any other!!!! Using this word dehumanizes a person!!!!

    • Facts should matter

      Or worse yet – “these people.”

      “We need to keep tabs of THESE people.”

      Makes my head explode!

      Also, whenever the cops are interviewed after a local compliance sweep, they almost always claim it was “successful” and proudly admit: “We want THEM to know that THEY are being watched.”

      We’re looked upon and treated like wild animals that escaped from a zoo; making sure we stay in our designated pasture.

      • Will Allen

        Yep, those “successful” “compliance checks” are pathetic. What a waste of resources. LE is so “successful” at verifying things are exactly as people told them they were.

        If the Registries were more moral or American, LE would be 100% responsible for gathering all information themselves. Then they would have no reason to cry and whine or do “compliance checks”.

        I do like to waste LE resources but I also think all Americans should help LE and never allow “compliance checks”. Never allow LE to get near you or your family.

        Only corrupt, criminal regimes have $EX Offender Registries.

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