MN: 8th Circuit OKs conditions in embattled Minnesota sex offender program

Source: 7/13/23

ST. LOUIS (CN)  — The Eighth Circuit has once again given its blessing to a Minnesota program that detains certain sex offenders indefinitely, finding that neither the program nor the conditions it subjects detainees to violate their First, Fourth or 14th Amendment rights. 

The program at issue, the Minnesota Sex Offender Program, houses about 740 civilly-committed men in two high-security facilities in rural parts of the state. Most, but not all, of those detainees have sex offense convictions — in many cases, multiple such offenses — and judges determined all to be a “sexually dangerous person” or have a “sexual psychopathic personality” under the terms of Minnesota laws, which first took effect in the mid-1990s. 

Minnesota’s program, one of 20 around the United States, mostly detains people who have completed prison sentences but serves as a life sentence more often than not. Only a handful of detainees have ever been transferred out of the program’s high-security facilities, most of them in the last few years. Lower-security facilities have been plagued by capacity issues, leading to legal challenges and side-eyes from lawmakers when they were asked to increase the program’s budget this year.

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What they’ve done is bring Guantanamo to the states. Is anyone really surprised? Stripping individual liberty has been a planned ongoing agenda by the government for decades.

Since this ruling, the treatment and conditions at this facility have worsened by initiating lock downs, room searches and restrictions towards the clients. On May 2nd a client severely beat a staff member, in hopes he would go to prison, rather than spend any more time in this so called treatment center. He pled guilty and asked for the maximum punishment and received 18 years in prison.