RI: Many people in the leadership of Warwick, Rhode Island see no benefit from the residency restrictions

Source: warwickonline.com 3/23/23

Although the news might not sit well with some parents, the Warwick Police Department says that the elimination of residency restrictions for Level III sex offenders does not pose a danger to students at local schools.

“I do not believe that the elimination of the 1,000’ law will add any more risk to the community,” said Chief Bradford Connor.

A 300-foot restriction was introduced in 1996, which was expanded to a 1,000 foot radius in a law approved by the General Assembly and signed by Gov. Gina Raimondo in 2015. An injunction was filed against the law shortly after its introduction which has largely barred its enforcement. The lawsuit claimed that vague language made the statute unenforceable, and that even if it could be enforced, the restrictions violated due process without any clear benefit to the community.

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What’s the point in feeling safe if you actually aren’t?

From the article:

“Indeed, there is no evidence that residency restrictions have had any positive effect on preventing repeat offenses. In an affidavit submitted during a similar case in Massachusetts in 2012, Dr. Jill Levenson noted several studies from across the country indicating that these restrictions have a negligible impact on public safety; in fact, Iowa has actually witnessed a steady increase in child sex crimes since introducing a 2000 foot restriction in 2005.”

This gives the indication in IA that the increased distance is directly responsible for the increase in child sex crimes reported since 2005 and Dr. Levenson is directly responsible for this data. Since she is aware of this forum and ACSOL, a response from her here would be helpful here given I cannot find a source for this info other than this article as well as a rebuttal to the article’s author (who does a great job of not citing anything in the article but spewing data w/out context and would in line with Kennedy spewing such garbage without research).

Also, for your reading leisure, IA discussed the 2,000 ft restriction in court and had found it is a punishment of sorts along the line of banishment: John Doe, I, on Their Own Behalf and As Representatives of the Class of All Sex Offenders in the State of Iowa; John Doe, Ii, on Their Own Behalf and As Representatives of the Class of All Sex Offenders in the State of Iowa; John Doe, Iii, on Their Own Behalf and As Representatives of the Class of All Sex Offenders in the State of Iowa, Appellees, v. Tom Miller, Iowa Attorney General; Appellant.j. Patrick White, As Representatives of the Class of All County Attorneys in Iowa; Michael Wolf, As Representatives of the Class of All County Attorneys in Iowa, Defendants, 405 F.3d 700 (8th Cir. 2005) US Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit – 405 F.3d 700 (8th Cir. 2005)

“A study in 2000 concluded that public school teachers are by far the most overrepresented profession among child abusers, accounting for nearly ⅓ of reported cases (as opposed to 9% for the more frequently maligned professions of clergy or scout leaders).” What exactly is overrepresented? Too many perhaps in the mind of those who think so? How about rephrasing to say most represented given probably on a daily basis, one can find someone within a school system who is reported online to have allegedly committed a sex crime? Would the author be saying by contrast that clergy or scout leaders are underrepresented?

This is a disingenuous author and article at best. Apologies for the long post.

Last edited 2 months ago by TS

A well written piece. Kudos for the author’s keen use of the word: Verbiage. That’s what Smith V Doe should have been about…period! Why? Verbiage is a reference to the indivisible connection between sound law ( writing ) and human behavior.
Law writing, last I checked, is a verb

We must appreciate the awkward nature of those who believe safety from interpersonal aggression can be bought a foot at a time the in a World with a world wide web. It seems to me these two concepts are diametrically opposed.