Wednesday, June 11, 2014

2 Quick Summaries: June 9th VCSC Meeting and June 11th VSCC Meeting


Two days ago (on Monday the 9th) I attended the second meeting for the Virginia Criminal Sentencing Commission (VCSC) for 2014.

I previously posted about the April 14th meeting. 

The Presentations  from Monday’s meeting have not yet been loaded on the VCSC website (it usually take a week or more) you’ll be able to read everything that was covered.  

No surprise, they decided to go with Option 3 for the Possession of Child Pornography Study. It was the easiest (no additional work) and carried no additional expense. But it will be for FY2014 AND FY2015 whereas the presentation states just FY2014. 

For those of you who read through the presentations when they are finally loaded note on page 7-8 how many cases in Region 2 with most in Fairfax Co., that’s because of the NOVA-ICAC.  Same with page 14, Albemarle Co., the Southern VA-ICAC 

There is also a presentation on revocation of Probation with data from FY1998 to 2014, numbers of technical violations or new law violations and how there has been a flip since 2009. Then the sanctions received based on whether it was a technical, a new misdemeanor or a new felony. On page 12 for FY2014 of the 27.7% Violations of Special Court-Imposed Conditions, 7% of those were Sex Offender Restrictions. 

And finally a 20 year (2 decades) look-back and comparison of Truth-in-Sentencing, the reason for the creation of the Virginia Criminal Sentencing Commission back in 1994 with the elimination of parole. It turns out Governor George Allen’s gubernatorial promise of Truth-in-Sentencing wasn’t his idea it was actually a Federal Funding Promotion scheme.  I had no idea! 

I did know that Governor Allen (1993-1998) routinely claimed high recidivism rates for “Sex Offenders” which as we all know is false. 

Two quick examples for anyone who is questioning my claim:  

1- From Dr. Richard Wright’s book, Sex Offender Laws: Failed Policies, New Direction (page 129).  Former Virginia Governor and US Senator George Allen to gain support and passage of the Adam Walsh Child Protection & Safety Act of 2006 said, 

Some may wonder why there is such a focus on sex offenders? Why is there such a focus on Pedophiles and sex offenders and rapists? The reason is, if you look at the statistics – and it is not unique to Virginia it is that way it is across the country – the highest recidivist rate, or the highest repeat offender rate of any crime -   even higher than murders, even higher than armed robbers -  is sex offenders”. 

2- From Lynn Zott’s book Current Controversies Series: Sex Offender and Public Policy I was able to read U.S. Senator Allen’s entire floor statement which included numerous falsehoods including that there are 100,000 AWOL RSO’s in the U.S. This myth  was debunked in a 2011 study by Jill Levenson.  

You can read the speech re-printed in Zott’s book here:
George Allen’s Full Public Statement: Children’s Safety and Violent Crime Reduction Act of 2006, July 20, 2006 

Thank goodness Mr. Allen is no longer in an elected position because fact-based legislation is obviously not something he believes in.  


Today the Virginia State Crime Commission (VSCC) held a Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Funding Study Work Group, I mentioned it back on May 23rd . 

They plan on holding two more of these Work Groups:
  • Wednesday, July 30th from 9:00 a.m. - Noon in Senate Room 3 of the Capitol, Richmond, VA.  
  • Wednesday, September 10th from 9:00 a.m. - Noon in Senate Room 3 of the Capitol, Richmond, VA. 
The materials discussed at today’s meeting were not available a head of time so I attended not knowing what the scope of work might have included but now the material is viewable here. 

It turns out they are primarily focusing on State and Federal funding (Grants) for all the Virginia Sexual, Domestic Violence or Sexual and Domestic Violence providers in the Commonwealth and if there are better ways to streamline the processes and red-tape. This was the very last part of HB885.  

So I’ve determined I do not need to attend the two other VSCC Work Group meetings for 2014. 

I’ll keep you posted on any relevant issues or proposals either of these Commonwealth Commissions present or attempt to implement (VCSC) within their December report. 

Thank you for following this blog!