Tuesday, July 26, 2016

TheHill.com: Marking Kids for Life on Sex Offender Registries - By Nicole Pittman, Eli Lehrer, Stacie Rumenap

Marking kids for life on sex offender registries, July 25, 2016
By Nicole Pittman, Eli Lehrer, Stacie Rumenap

For decades, our country has been putting children as young as 8 years old on sex-offender registries. Hundreds of thousands of Americans are registered for things they did as kids, their entire lives tainted by youthful indiscretions as common as streaking or teenage Romeo and Juliet romances.  

While lawmakers may not have been aware of the destructive consequences when they the passed registration laws, including the federal Adam Walsh Act, that include kids from the juvenile courts, new research confirms, definitively, registering youth is not an effective response — under any circumstance. It doesn’t make the community safer and it certainly doesn’t get at the root of the problem.  Yet, 39 states and the federal government continue to do it. This July, lawmakers will markup the Adam Walsh Act, and it’s time to correct course. 

Lenore Skenazy: Bogus ‘Sex Offender’ Labels are Ruining Lives

The Virginia State Police (official monitor and manager of Virginia RSO’s) does NOT track the number of juveniles on the VSP Sex Offender Registry which means the number of children each year mandated to publicly register as Violent Sex Offenders for life is unknown. 

Just this past Saturday I sent an email to all 138 (2 vacant seats at the moment) Virginia Legislators with a rundown of how other States handle juveniles convicted of sex crimes and 2 proposals to reform juvenile registration in Virginia, I received some positive replies that same day.  
We must continue to work towards reform in Virginia!

Mary Devoy

Bogus ‘sex offender’ labels are ruining lives, July 25, 2016
By Lenore Skenazy

What’s the most common age of sex-offenders? 

It’s not a trick question, but unless you follow this stuff closely you’ll almost certainly answer wrong. 

In fact, most people are shocked to learn that the most common age of people charged with a sex offense isn’t a creepy 39, or 51. 

It’s 14. 

That’s right. As the US Bureau of Justice reports: “The single age with the greatest number of offenders from the perspective of law enforcement was age 14.” 

Editorial: A Chance to Get Sex Offender Laws (in Illinois) Right

A year ago I wrote an editorial that Virginia needs to study the last 20 years of the VSP Sex Offender Registry and all the laws directed towards those listed on it.  

Since then I’ve been lobbying the Virginia Legislature to do just that. 

I’ve also posted (http://goo.gl/S1SEpa  http://goo.gl/lNkGg5 ) about Connecticut because they’ve given themselves 2.5 years to study their Sex Offender Registry. 

Well, now Illinois has a Bill sitting on the Governors desk (see editorial below) waiting to be signed that would create a Task Force to study how their Sex Offender Registry could be improved. 

Come on Virginia, it’s time for us to take a serious look at the last 21 years of our Sex Offender Registry and all the restrictions and regulations that have been implemented since it’s creation.  

Mary Devoy

Editorial: A chance to get sex offender laws right, July 25, 2016

When the 19-year-old son of Tonia Maloney of Downstate Fairview Heights had sex with his 16-year-old girlfriend, he was forced to register as a sex offender. He was a legal adult and she was a minor. 

Police told his employer to fire him, and when he found a job in a new town, the police there ran him off, too.