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CommentaryNational

AZ: Arizona’s Sex Offender Laws: Recommendations for Reform

[Tamara Rice Lave in arizonastatelawjournal.org – 1/13/21]

In this Article, I consider ways in which Arizona’s laws regarding sex offenders should be reformed. I begin by focusing on laws that are designed to deal with the danger posed by convicted sex offenders: registration requirements, residence restrictions, and civil commitment. I contend that the state has overstated the risk posed by convicted sex offenders and that the laws meant to control them may do more harm than good. Next, I turn to police sexual violence. I argue that the state needs to go further in criminalizing this abhorrent conduct in order to promote the rule of law and protect vulnerable persons.

Download a PDF of the paper from arizonastatelawjournal.org

 

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Get em Tamara.

Outstanding article and research. Finally breaking down the decades old false stereotypes and faulty information. This gives me hope, if only people in the justice department and the law makers will take note. She stated what we all know, that registries do more harm than good and no data supports their effectiveness. My offense was a very long time ago. I have recovered fairly well, but i live in constant fear that if I am identified I could lose the job I worked so hard to get, all because of the oppressive registry that could put old information in the wrong hands.

The article basically says exactly what anti-registry advocates have been saying for years. The data against the registry is nothing new, and legislators have been well aware of that for longer than any of them will admit.

The problem is the politics of it all. Any legislative action against the registry is essentially political suicide, no matter how small or ineffective. It’s the general public that needs this data, not the idiotic, failed barristers who write laws now. IMHO, our conundrum is how to get the general public to receive this data in this age of bleeding-leading, shock-over-fact, sensationalist, subjective media.

@Dustin, The problem is that the general public is not interested in data they are interested in false logic that as long as it ‘seems’ like it is a logical conclusion to them it is completely irrelevant what the real facts are even when it proves their conclusion to be false. Worse, more recently, far too many people will refuse to even look at facts that will contradict their false logic so if it proves their initial beliefs wrong they will just ignore it completely. Finally even if you can overcome this, the reality is that most people aren’t very smart – they can’t even read a simple set of three directions and follow them – so how can you expect them to be smart enough to actually discern fact from fiction?

I agree with Dustin.

To answer your question:
“so how can you expect them to be smart enough to actually discern fact from fiction?”

We are going to do this by showing them. Yes, it will take time.

My name is Terry and I am the Photographer / Videographer for the “Lives On The Registry” Project at NARSOL- National Association for Rational Sexual Offense Laws. Our project was created to tell the 1 million + stories of those listed on a Sexual Offense Registry across this country.

You are right, percentages and figures mean nothing to most people until they wake up one day and their Mom, Dad, Brother, Son, Sister, or Friend are listed on the Registry, and then, their opinions start to change. That is what “Lives On The Registry” is tasked to accomplish, to show the world that those listed on a Sexual Offense Registry are people too, just like the ones that would condemn them. The difference is they made a mistake and today they want to live their lives like everyone else.

Negative redirect and false assumptions help no one. I suggest, if you are on a registry, tell your story to show the world you deserve to live again. It all starts with you living your life and not creating a personal prison after you are released.

If you or anyone here wants to follow our stories you can check out our YouTube Channel

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC7h6TJmWNt9XYcxuYgybI6Q

We are just getting started and will post our first stories soon

Terry H

Lives On The Registry

The courts really need to start considering empirical evidence instead of rubber-stamping things: “The law is the law and there’s no law against legislatures creating bad and stupid laws.”

It’s like the vast majority of cases seems to hinge on whether or not it’s legal to have these laws than any sort of evidence behind the laws to their validity to their goal.

Legislators need to be held accountable for passing laws on false evidence. Courts need to grow a pair and stop giving legislators a pass. Legislators aren’t Gods and if they were they would be false Gods. Enough of being Americans pile of manure.

Its ironic that when courts weigh evidence they take an oath to be impartial and base decisions on the facts.

But when it comes to legislative findings they defer to the co-equal branch’s findings.

Problem is that politicians don’t take an oath to be unbiased fact-finders, in fact they are expected to be just the opposite. In this way the courts allows legislator to manufacture “facts” not supported by evidence.

@JDUtah

While that is true, the politicians do take an oath to uphold and defend the Constitution of the nation (and the state if a state official), so by extension in this argument they are not upholding it when the laws they pass and get signed into law are found to be unconstitutional. Sadly, I truly believe they knowingly do this and pass the buck to the courts and people to fight it out while they move on because they score the political victory.

I believe it would be good political fodder for the incumbent candidates voting record and bills introduced/co-sponsored through passage to law record be examined publicly for unconstitutional laws and the related waste of money it takes to prove such in the courts. The assumption that all laws are constitutional until proven otherwise is taking advantage of the system for political gain at the detriment of the unknowing and unreviewing public.

Another well written study with appropriate conclusions that should be added to the growing list of similarly written studies and get more attention to the facts herein. Hope all org’s with the same mission as ACSOL have this file in their library. Just an open thought for all here – is there one doc that has included all of the ref’s which refute the bad data and info and if so, what is it and where?

I live in AZ and am no longer on paper. I do though, have to register for the rest of my life. I had been thinking of petitioning to be relieved of this requirement and now this paper enforces a possible argument. I am a Level 1 risk assessment, which means no web entry or community notification. But I still show up on background checks which has made getting a good job very difficult. Thankfully, my current company believes in second chances and I am able to make a decent living.
Most definitely AZ needs to make it possible for people to get off the registry after so many years. I was convicted 20 years ago and am still dealing with the fear of being assaulted or my family being harassed or losing my job.
Thank you Tamara for a great paper

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