Sex Offender Volunteered For High Football Team

In Seattle a Level III sex offender was allowed to work as a volunteer with the Evergreen High School football team, according to school officials. It was the head coach’s responsibility to see that the volunteer passed a background check before having contact with students.

Two female students who serve as managers with the football team alerted authorities after the volunteer made comments that made them feel uncomfortable. He was subsequently arrested for failing to register as a sex offender.

Sex offenders are “offensive” because of their nature. It’s how they are wired. They simply don’t know any better. Even if they know right from wrong, they can’t help themselves; it’s their “way”. Pit-bulls are often aggressive dogs that attack for no reason. It’s their nature. Golden Retrievers are big dopey dogs who just want to play and show affection. It’s their nature.

It’s disappointing that the coach didn’t do his job properly. What may have happened is the coach took a liking to the volunteer and “trusted” that he didn’t have a record. The coach like most people didn’t want to believe he was in the presence of a bad egg. None of us want to admit we are in the presence of evil.

His denial and lack of accountability put his students at risk. Those days should be over because we live in such a litigious society. However our “niceness” often makes us stupid. The girls on the other hand who spoke up were immediately listened to and were taken seriously. Good for them. 10 years ago, and even today sexual harassment of this nature would be blamed on the women and swept under the rug. Fortunately we are becoming more civilized.

Robert Siciliano is a Personal Security Expert and Adviser to For more information see Intelius at Sex Offender Check to reduce your chances of encountering a bad guy. See him discussing Sex Offenders on Fox Boston.


Published in: on July 22, 2010 at 1:44 pm  Comments (4)  
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Supreme Court Says Feds Can Detain Sex Offenders Indefinitely: Why That’s Dangerous

The U.S. government can now keep prisoners in custody who have not necessarily been convicted of a crime, based on suspicions of “future dangerousness.”

The U.S. Supreme Court’s 7-2 ruling this week in U.S. v. Comstock, which declared that the federal government has the right to hold convicted sex offenders in “civil commitment” even after they have completed their prison sentences, has alarmed civil libertarians, many of whom are asking: If the government can keep sex offenders in preventive custody as long as they remain “dangerous,” what will stop it from doing the same with terror suspects? The rights of terrorists — like those of sex offenders — might matter little to the average American, but the implications for a free society are unmistakeably dangerous.

The possibility that Comstock could help justify the legal black holes at Bagram or Guantanamo is certainly a concern worth raising, particularly given the Obama administration’s embrace of indefinite detention. But it seems equally important to consider the immediate implications for the prisoner population that may be affected by this law. It could be bigger than we think.

Blandly known as Section 4248, the legal provision upheld by the court this week was a product of the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act of 2006, the sweeping legislation that created the massive National Sex Offender Registry and strengthened laws prohibiting child pornography. Section 4248 holds that a convicted sex offender who is determined to be “sexually dangerous” can be detained indefinitely by the federal government, under order of the U.S. Attorney General. This was not an unprecedented idea: The Supreme Court had previously upheld the power of the states to “civilly commit” convicted sex offenders, in 1997, in Kansas v. Hendricks. In 2007, the Charlotte News and Observer estimated that some 2,700 state prisoners were being held in civil commitment.

But the new legal statute presented by the Adam Walsh Act was much more sweeping than anything addressed by Hendricks. An amicus brief submitted by the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL) on behalf of the respondents in Comstock points out that, for example, whereas states must provide a psychiatric evaluation of those labeled sexually dangerous, the federal government need only suggest that a district court “may order … a psychiatric or psychological examination of the defendant.” If the court elects not to, it can “proceed directly to a hearing and make a determination regarding sexual dangerousness without any evaluation of the individual’s mental condition having been conducted.”

What’s more, states that want to civilly commit a sex offender must prove their dangerousness beyond a reasonable doubt, the same standard as a criminal conviction. Section 4248, on the other hand, requires merely that there be “clear and convincing evidence” that a person is sexually dangerous — even if he or she was never actually convicted of a sex crime in the first place.

Which gets to the most alarming part. The NACDL pointed out in its brief that, whereas the Kansas statute “applied only to persons previously ‘convicted of or charged with’ at least one of twelve specifically defined sexually violent offenses,” Section 4248 makes no such specification, basically authorizing “certification and potential commitment of a significant number of persons with no criminal history of sexual misconduct.”

As attorney and civil libertarian Wendy Kaminer wrote for the Atlantic this week, this means that “the government is empowered to imprison (or ‘civilly’ commit) people indefinitely without bothering to try them in criminal court or in any other proceeding in which they are afforded the rights of a defendant in a criminal case, even if they have never been convicted of any sex crimes.”

“Federal criminal jurisdiction has expanded dramatically in the last few decades, with the blessings of conservatives and liberals alike,” Kaminer writes. “Now, thanks to the ruling in U.S. v Comstock, that power seems practically infinite: federal authorities can imprison people indefinitely on suspicions of future dangerousness. It’s not just suspected sex offenders or terrorists who are at risk. ”

Can Future Dangerousness Be Predicted?

It would be easy to assume that the original defendants in Comstock were irrepressibly monstrous predators, something along the lines of Phillip Garrido. In fact, the longest prison sentence served by any of them was eight years. Graydon Earl Comstock Jr., was serving a three-year term in federal prison for receiving child pornography. Thomas Matherly had completed a three- to four-year federal sentence after pleading guilty to one count of possessing child pornography. Markis Revland had finished a five-year prison term for possession of child pornography. Two others, Shane Catron and Marvin Vigil, were accused of sexual abuse of a minor; Catron was deemed incompetent to stand trial, and Vigil served an eight-year prison term.

In November 2006, Comstock was six days from finishing his 37-month sentence when Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, invoking the authority imbued by the newly passed Adam Walsh Act, declared him “sexually dangerous,” blocking his release. When the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled last year that such a determination was unconstitutional, the Obama administration stepped in and blocked the release of several dozen convicted sex offenders who had served their federal sentences by filing an emergency appeal with the Supreme Court. Newly appointed Solicitor General Elena Kagan, who is now in line to become our next Supreme Court justice, wrote that the prisoners’ release “would pose a significant risk to the public and constitute a significant harm to the interest of the United States.”

During oral arguments last fall, in which Kagan argued convincingly that the federal government has the right to hold sex offenders beyond their prison sentences, the justices seemed to take at face value the claim that “future dangerousness” can be accurately determined, debating a supposedly analogous scenario in which a prisoner infected with a highly contagious virus must be held in federal custody to prevent him from ravaging the population at large, zombie-style. “It seems to me that the constitutional answer is the same in this statute as in the case of somebody who incurs a very communicable disease and the government wants to prevent him from infecting the community,” Justice John Paul Stevens said.

The problem with that logic is that, while an infectious disease can be scientifically guaranteed to spread, the same degree of certainty does not exist with regard to convicted sex offenders, even those with criminal histories. Contrary to popular perception, it is very hard to predict which individuals will reoffend once they are released to the outside world. In its amicus brief, NACDL warned that Section 4248 “rests on an incorrect assumption that the individuals who will commit future sex offenses can be identified accurately.”

“Although there is no dispute that mental health professionals can be helpful in assisting judges to understand individuals’ mental states,” NACDL argued, “literature and data from the past thirty years suggest that, when it comes to predicting which individuals will commit offenses in the future, professionals’ predictions are neither accurate nor reliable for purposes of legal determinations affecting a person’s liberty interests.”

NACDL pointed to a 2006 study which found that “clinical judgments” predicting whether sexual offenders will reoffend, are “wrong between 72% and 93% of the time.”

“These prediction rates are far worse than blind chance,” NACDL argued, “and far below what due process demands.”

Due process, however, flies out the window where convicted sex offenders are concerned, and an almost universal unwillingness, however understandable, to defend them means that laws targeting them have gone largely unchecked. For all the concern over what the ruling in U.S. v. Comstock might mean for terror suspects down the line, there is very little concern over what it means now for the 105 sex offenders being held indefinitely.

Published in: on May 21, 2010 at 11:56 am  Leave a Comment  
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Jessica’s Law dilemma: Homeless sex offenders

The number of convicted sex offenders living on the streets is soaring across the state, according to new figures released to the ABC7 I-Team. It is an unintended consequence of Jessica’s Law (Prop 83), passed overwhelmingly by voters a few years ago.

The California Supreme Court is expected to issue a ruling next week whether Jessica’s Law is so broad and intrusive, that it violates the constitutional rights of convicted sex offenders. But, even more important, the measure meant to protect children could actually be putting us all at risk.

In the city and county of San Francisco, the state’s website lists 167 convicted sex offenders as transient or homeless.

“We are actually walking time bombs out here because we are suffering from sleep deprivation,” said a paroled sex offender who wished to remain anonymous.

Some of them choose to be homeless, but the 45 sex offenders released from prison to San Francisco after Jessica’s Law took effect, are forced to serve their three-year parole living on the streets.

“You’re telling them to go out there and live out there and you don’t know what he could be conspiring to do,” he said. “He sees your movements all day long, he’s watching.”

Under Jessica’s Law, a paroled sex offender can’t take up residence within 2,000 feet of a school or park. Checking the map at the parole office in San Francisco, that leaves very few places for sex offenders to live.

The I-Team spoke with San Francisco parole supervisor Armel Farnsworth.

Noyes: The high rent district, the parking lot of the ball park?

Farnsworth: Yes.

Noyes: The toxic waste dump at Hunter’s Point?

Farnsworth: Yes.

Noyes: Or out on the golf course?

Farnsworth: The golf course at the Olympic Country Club, yes.

“People should know that what they voted for and what they’re getting are total opposites,” said a paroled sex offender who showed us his parole paperwork that says “he must maintain a transient status” and “cannot stay at any shelter bed or residential housing” because of Jessica’s Law.

He says the measure is not doing what voters expected — it is not keeping sex offenders away from parks or schools.

Asked if there any restrictions against him as a transient going to a park or going to within 2000 feet of a school, he said, “No, there isn’t. You can in fact go from park to park all day long, spending two hours in each of them.”

The state’s Sex Offender Management Board says the housing restrictions under Jessica’s Law are not supported by research. The board gave the I-Team an advanced copy of its new report to the Legislature that says, “There is almost no correlation between sex offenders living near restricted areas” such as schools and parks “and where they commit their offenses.”

The report also concludes it is not strangers who pose the biggest threat — “far more Californians will be sexually victimized in their own homes by acquaintances or family members.”

“The state is better served when you figure out where sex offenders should live, not where they shouldn’t,” said Suzanne Brown-McBride, executive director of the Sex Offender Management Board.

Brown-McBride tells the I-Team no one expected the number of homeless sex offenders to increase so dramatically under Jessica’s Law. “The rates honestly have skyrocketed. We went from several hundred offenders being transient in the state of California to now well over 5,000.”

That poses a serious challenge for the parole agents who have to keep track of sex offenders.

“We would prefer they weren’t transient, so it’s easier to supervise an individual that has stable housing,” said West Bay District parole administrator Matthew Goughnour.

San Francisco’s parole agents have had to give up on home visits for paroled sex offenders and rely on GPS tracking. But it is expensive. The State Department of Corrections spent $65 million on GPS last year, but stopped paying for short-term housing for sex offenders, stopped paying for community-based treatment, and stopped much of the re-entry counseling for sex offenders.

“A sex offender who is successful is one who doesn’t reoffend, and if we’re doing things to undermine their possibility of being in the community without reoffense, then we’re making a mistake,” said Brown-McBride.

The author of Jessica’s Law, State Sen. George Runner, says he is open to communities loosening the restriction against sex offenders living within 2,000 feet of a park or school.

“If the city of San Francisco felt like 500 feet was a better number, we certainly don’t have any issue with that,” said Runner. “Our issue has been pretty simple, we just don’t think that a person who has molested a child should live across the street from a school.”

The California Supreme Court could do away with the residency restriction altogether. The key issues: the law also applies to parolees who have not committed crimes against children, and it sometimes applies to those who committed sex crimes long ago.

We spoke to a man who served time for rape in the 1980s; he was paroled last year after a stolen property conviction, yet Jessica’s Law kicked in.

“Upon my release from the state prison, I was informed that I could not maintain any family relationships with my wife, my brother, my niece and nephews and I could not reside in any dwelling,” he said.

“It makes them feel they have no future,” said registered sex offender Jake Goldenflame who is now an author and advocate pushing for additional counseling for parolees. He also runs a website offering advice for convicted sex offenders about following the law.

Noyes: In your opinion, is the public safer because of Jessica’s Law?

Goldenflame: No, no, the public and its children are in greater danger. And I think that it’s virtually a miracle something hasn’t happened yet.

Noyes: Do these restrictions make a parolee for a sex offense more likely to reoffend, do you think?

Goldenflame: Absolutely, because the offenders are constantly under stress, they’re not in treatment, and they’re constantly roaming through the city.

In addition to the housing restrictions and GPS, Jessica’s Law also brought tougher sentencing guidelines and longer prison terms for sex offenders. We’ll have more on this story when the California Supreme Court issues its ruling next week.

To learn more about the background of the sex offenders profiled in this report, and the challenges they face in keeping out of trouble, read the I-Team Blog.


Published in: on January 31, 2010 at 10:04 am  Leave a Comment  
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Monitoring is key to protecting our children

Following the recent abduction and murder of Sarah Foxwell, I have been asked by several folks “what is the best way to deal with sex offenders once they are released from prison?”

I have also seen the finger of blame pointed at light sentences handed out by judges and a failure of legislators to craft tougher laws.

The current system in place as crafted by our legislators is, ironically, an “honor”-based system. Sex offender registrants are required to report in person every six months to their local sheriff’s office to verify their registration. They are required to report any address changes within seven days. The same is true for their place of employment.

Once information is provided, the sheriff’s office will physically verify their address and contact their employer for confirmation.

This all sounds fairly strict, and it is a far cry from what we did 20 years ago (no monitoring), but in no way are we currently “tracking” registrants.

While we have the technology to perform 24/7 monitoring of child sex offenders for the rest of their lives, we also have liberal legislators who would rather protect the bad guys at the expense of our most precious and vulnerable citizens.

Those registrants classified as child sex offenders and predators should be required to wear GPS tracking equipment with the option of having a chip installed subcutaneously. This is not altogether different than the technology utilized for in-home detention (often utilized with juvenile offenders). Unauthorized removal or tampering with the system would be classified as a felony carrying a mandatory five-year sentence.

Built-in alerts in the mapping software could be established around schools and other locations where children are known to congregate or where the registrant is otherwise not allowed.

Equipment expenses would be the responsibility of the offender, and Maryland should be the first state in the union to make it a reality. Offender locations could be known in real time, and when a child is missing, every second is critical.

I am tired of hearing excuses from lawmakers. If we are serious about protecting our kids, this is the place to start. Lengthy mandatory sentences are OK, but they do nothing to help once the offender is released from prison. You can physically see an offender once a day for an hour, but you still won’t know where he is for the remaining 23 hours without GPS tracking. A western shore child predator who takes a weekend trip to Ocean City is not a blip on our radar, but that could change under these provisions.

I predict that, once implemented, Maryland would see a mass exodus of sex offender registrants to states with fewer restrictions. What could be bad about that? Let’s at least start with the predators and repeat offenders; then expand the program over the next few years.

There are those who will think this type of monitoring is unduly harsh and intrusive. I simply ask you to go to the final resting place of Sarah Foxwell and tell it to her. She will never be able to cast a vote for this type of change, but, to those who remain, it is our duty to get the job done.

# Mike McDermott is a veteran law enforcement officer, former chief of police for the town of Snow Hill and currently serving a second term as mayor of Pocomoke City. He is a candidate for the Md. House of Delegates seat representing District 38-B.

Some sex offenders escape restriction

Sex offenders who committed serious sex crimes out of state can live anywhere they choose in Iowa because of a loophole in state law.

The law, overhauled last spring, continues to restrict those who commit felony sexual abuse in Iowa from living within 2,000 feet of schools or child care centers. But because of a flaw in how the statute was written, it doesn’t apply to abusers with comparable convictions from other states who move to Iowa.

“They made a big mistake, and now we’ve got people moving in,” said Rep. Christopher Rants, R-Sioux City, a candidate for governor and one of a handful of lawmakers who voted against the changes.

Just how many out-of-state offenders with a history of felony-level sexual abuse who have moved close to schools or child care centers in Iowa is unclear. That would take a time-consuming examination of records in the Iowa sex offender registry, state public safety officials said.

Lawmakers changed the sex offender law last year to try to better monitor where sex offenders go while they are awake, rather than only restricting where they can sleep.

The new law, widely supported by law enforcement, narrowed the list of offenders who are forbidden from living within 2,000 feet of a school or child care center to those who commit Class C felony sexual abuse.

It also bans everyone on the state’s sex offender registry whose victim was a minor from being present on the grounds of an elementary or secondary school, public library or child care center without permission, or from loitering within 300 feet of a public playground, sport-related activity area, pool or beach when it is in use by a minor.

Ross Loder, a lobbyist for the Iowa Department of Public Safety, said the law as a whole is better with the updates. He said he will urge lawmakers to fix the loophole when the next session of the Iowa Legislature begins on Monday.

Rants and Rep. Kent Sorenson, R-Indianola, are drafting a bill that would close the loophole and broaden the 2,000-foot rule again so that anyone with a sex offense against a minor would be subject to the restriction.

Child abuse experts say the changes made last spring are smart because statistics prove sexual abuse cases typically do not involve strangers picking random children from places where kids gather. They usually involve abuse committed by a child’s close relative or trusted family friend.

But Democrats and Republicans negotiated the changes behind closed doors, fearing the controversial update could be political suicide if Iowans thought they were weakening sex offender laws.

At the end of the three-month session, lawmakers passed an agreed-upon bill with very little public discussion.

Rants contends the flaw could have been caught if the process had been more open.

“We warned folks there were going to be problems with their rush to get it down without a thorough discussion,” Rants said. “They just expected everyone to be quiet and go along with it with no public scrutiny.”

The new law also clarifies which offenders are required to register and when. The law ensures they register when they come to Iowa to live, work or go to school.

Loder said special restrictions can be imposed on a case-by-case basis if someone under supervision is transferred to Iowa. A parole or probation officer can stop an offender from living, say, next to a school bus stop or within sight of a school.

And those on the sex offender registry now have closer contact with law enforcement because they are required to check in in person and to get a new photo if they’ve changed their appearance.

Loder pointed out that crafting the new law was far from simple.

“When you put together a 55-page bill, it’s a very, very complex framework you’re developing,” he said.


Published in: on January 7, 2010 at 12:11 am  Comments (1)  
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Dover Police looking for sex offender who did not register his address

Clarence Smalls

Dover Police are looking for a sex offender who registered his address at a location that doesn’t exist. Police say Clarence Smalls who is 39 years old did not register his address with the State Bureau of Identification. Smalls is a tier 2 sex offender. Anyone who knows where he is should call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-TIP-3333.


Published in: on December 30, 2009 at 12:12 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Police alert residents about sex offenders




The Marion County Sheriff’s Office is notifying residents in downtown Salem that three convicted sex offenders are living in their neighborhood.

William Lee Allen, 46, Johnny Eugene Gunter, 49, and Tommy Jay Vollendroff, 49, are living downtown. The sheriff’s office did not provide addresses.

Allen was placed on post-prison supervision on April 25, 2008, on a charge of rape involving a minor girl he knew, said his parole officer, Deputy Seth Prouser.

Allen is described as 5-foot-9, 170 pounds with blonde hair and hazel eyes. For information contact Prouser at (503) 792-5514.

Gunter was placed on post-prison supervision on May 14, 2004, on two charges of sexual abuse involving a 3-year-old boy he knew, said his parole officer, Deputy Eric Bandonis. Gunter has a history of violent behavior and drug abuse, Bandonis said.

Gunter is described as 6-foot, 215 pounds with brown hair and eyes.

Vollendroff was placed on post-prison supervision Nov. 25 for a charge of public indecency. Vollendroff exposed himself to two girls ages 8 and 10 that he didn’t know, Bandonis said. Vollendroff has a history of crimes that include sexual abuse and public indecency involving girls ages 8 to 14, Bandonis said.

Vollendroff is described as 5-foot-7, 195 pounds with black hair and brown eyes.

For information about Gunter or Vollendroff, contact Bandonis at (503) 566-6960.

Among conditions of each man’s parole, he cannot have contact with minors or use alcohol. Each also must undergo sex offender treatment and polygraph testing.


Published in: on December 25, 2009 at 7:43 am  Leave a Comment  
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Nursing home sweeps find 18 residents with outstanding warrants

Federal, state and county officials swept two Chicago-area nursing homes Tuesday for felons with outstanding arrest warrants and identified 18 residents wanted on charges ranging from disorderly conduct to burglary to assault.

The early morning raids, which involved about 20 federal marshals and Cook County sheriff’s police, were initiated by Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan in response to Tribune investigative reports about Illinois nursing facilities that house high numbers of felons and sex offenders.

Five people were arrested, including a sex offender wanted in another state for failing to register. In three cases, the residents were too sick to be taken into custody, and the other warrants were not immediately enforceable because they were issued in other jurisdictions.

The team found nine people with outstanding warrants when it swept Columbus Park Nursing & Rehabilitation Center on Chicago’s West Side and another nine at Heather Health Center in Harvey.

Authorities also examined records for Somerset Place on the North Side and discovered three residents with outstanding warrants, but jurisdictional limits prevented immediate arrests.

In the 13 total cases where local authorities could not enforce the warrant because of jurisdiction, they said they contacted the agencies that issued the warrants to see if those officials want the residents picked up.

“Today was the first operation in an ongoing project to identify nursing home residents who are wanted on arrest warrants,” said Madigan’s deputy chief of staff, Cara Smith, who participated in the sweeps.

“In just three facilities, we identified 21 wanted residents,” she said. “This is obviously just another gap in the system that needs to be filled.”

The number of felons known to be living in Illinois nursing homes has grown as the state increasingly relied on the facilities to house younger psychiatric patients, thousands of whom have criminal records.

The Tribune reported last month that Illinois State Police once ran similar sweeps of nursing homes for felons with outstanding warrants and unregistered sex offenders. From January 2005 through June 2006, when 20 northern Illinois nursing homes were swept and roughly 80 fugitives and sex offenders removed, state police in that region recorded a nearly 67 percent decrease in nursing home abuse and neglect complaints, according to a department citation issued to the sweeps unit.

But the program was halted after five years in 2006 because federal regulators questioned whether the sweeps were an appropriate use of Medicaid anti-fraud funds. State police were not part of Tuesday’s sweeps.

Ron Nunziato, a spokesman for the Columbus Park facility, said most of the outstanding warrants were for out-of-state crimes or for pending charges, and thus would not have surfaced during criminal background checks that all state nursing homes are required to perform on new residents under a 2006 law.

Nunziato said some of the residents were wanted on warrants for what he described as “minor offenses,” adding: “I don’t think it was a good use of their time.”

Efforts to reach a spokesman for Heather Health Center were not successful. At Somerset, where no arrests were made, administrator Maria Douvris-Rodgers said she was not aware of the three outstanding warrants.

The facilities targeted Tuesday house relatively large numbers of younger psychiatric patients and felons, state records show.

Thirty-two felons were living at Columbus Park as of Dec. 10, and of the 193 residents recently staying at the home, 62 were diagnosed with a mental illness and 123 were younger than 65.

One former Columbus Park resident, Ardyce Nauden, 62, was charged with first-degree murder this month after he allegedly beat to death a 72-year-old dementia patient also living there. Nauden, a felon who suffers from psychosis, is in custody while awaiting trial.

State public health officials are investigating whether Columbus Park accurately reported details of that case and other allegations of violence as required by state law. Federal regulators recently gave the five-story facility their lowest overall-quality rating, “well below average.” Nunziato has repeatedly said residents of the home are safe and well cared for.

Heather Health Center had 30 felons as of Dec. 10, and of the 108 residents recently living at the facility, 49 were diagnosed with a mental illness and 58 were younger than 65, state records show. Federal inspectors recently gave the home an “average” rating for overall quality.

The Tribune has reported that the criminal background checks and risk assessments carried out for new residents of the state’s nursing homes often were riddled with errors and omissions. In some cases, the risk that offenders posed to vulnerable elderly and disabled residents was played down. Facilities are supposed to use the risk assessments for monitoring and treatment.

Smith said that for the 13 residents whose warrants were not enforceable, information about their cases will be conveyed not only to other law enforcement agencies but also to the Illinois Department of Public Health. The attorney general will ask that the risk assessments of those residents “be revised to incorporate the warrant information,” she said.


Published in: on December 23, 2009 at 10:05 am  Leave a Comment  
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Let – off for half of violent thugs

MORE than half of all thugs arrested for violent attacks are let off with a caution, shock new figures show.

That means 1,000 brutes A WEEK get away with just a slap on the wrist.

Statistics revealed today by the Tories also show nearly three in ten sex offenders escape with a caution.

The dossier on Labour’s crime-fighting failures shows that a total of 52,300 violent offenders dodged harsher punishment by being given a caution in 2007.

That accounts for 56 per cent of all people convicted of violent crimes – and is nearly twice as many as were let off with a caution in 2003.

Meanwhile, 2,000 sex offenders escaped with a caution in 2007.

Just 1,400 were treated this leniently four years earlier.

And cautions for burglars were up from 5,600 to 7,000 over the same time.

It was also revealed that detection rates for violent and sex offences plummeted, with cops solving only 32 per cent of sex crimes in 2007 – compared to 43 per cent nine years ago.

About 47 per cent of cases involving violence were detected. But that is still less than the 57 per cent in 2000.

And just a third of drug users were charged – compared to nearly 60 per cent nine years ago – as cops chose to let cannabis users off with a warning instead.

Shadow Home Secretary Chris Grayling accused ministers of turning justice on its head.

He said: “People no longer think that justice is being done in this country. Offenders get away with it and the victims are left helpless.

“It’s nothing short of a disgrace that more than half of violent offenders get a caution.”

A Government spokesman last night defended its record – and claimed crime had fallen by a third.

He said: “Court will always be the right place for serious offenders.

“More people who commit these offences are going to prison and for longer.

From 2000 to 2008 the average time served in custody increased by 14 per cent.”


Published in: on December 21, 2009 at 10:59 am  Leave a Comment  
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Miller calls for tougher penalties for “monsters” of sex crimes

State Assemblyman Joel Miller (R-Poughkeepsie) says the two recent incidents of women being attacked near colleges in Poughkeepsie points up the need for tougher penalties against those who commit violent sexual crimes.

“These monsters need to be put behind bars where they belong,” he said.

“It’s a matter of saying sometimes you have to warehouse these people,” he said. “You can provide them with any kind of mental health counseling; you can do anything you want if it makes you feel less guilty about putting them away. These people, like hunters, should not be allowed to prey on innocent people.”

Miller said the state needs to enact Jessica’s Law to mandate 25 year minimum sentences for violent sex offenders, create a computer sex crime with felony implications, and resolve issues with civil confinement so sex offenders can be removed from area neighborhoods.


Published in: on December 21, 2009 at 10:49 am  Leave a Comment  
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