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Author Topic: Sex offenders can be kept in prison  (Read 1611 times)
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ATB
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« on: May 17, 2010, 05:02:20 PM »

Sex offenders can be kept in jail indefinitely....

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The high court reversed a lower court decision that said Congress overstepped its authority in allowing indefinite detentions of inmates considered "sexually dangerous."

I wonder what the objective criteria there are for determining if someone continues to be 'sexually dangerous'.

As a parent human being, I love the idea of seeing pedos staying in jail forever, but as an American, I don't understand how this is legal...and how SCOTUS can render this decision.
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Zarkon
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« Reply #1 on: May 17, 2010, 05:28:33 PM »

Not that I'm in favor of actual violent sexual offenders being free to roam our streets,  by any means.  However, I also do not agree with our current method of painting everyone who may have had contact with someone under the age of 18 with the same tar-brush.

Before we get into the knee-jerk reactions, let me explain.  I think there's a very huge difference between, for example, a 22 year old sleeping with a 16 year old (or even 14-15) with complete consent on the younger party's end and ANYONE having sex with a pre-pubescent child.  Hell, there's even a completely different term for sexual attraction for teenagers/post-pubescent "children" and actual children.  

So yes, I'm all in favor of keeping the actual molesters / monsters in jail and off streets.  I'm not in favor of lumping everyone into the same group.  Granted, I also don't think that there's a magical event that happens when someone goes from 17 to 18 that suddenly makes them OMG I AM AN ADULT AND CAN FUNCTION NOW! whereas before that they were completely naifs, either. Tongue

Yes, I hate our society for how we have completely unprepared teenagers for society.
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Isgrimnur
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« Reply #2 on: May 17, 2010, 05:33:08 PM »

Your link is busted.  

Information in the article indicates that this is civil commitment rather than a continued criminal detention.  In either a case of this or an involuntary psychiatric hold, the decision is still based on the preponderance of evidence that they are a danger to themselves or others.  
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« Reply #3 on: May 17, 2010, 05:37:14 PM »

Quote from: Isgrimnur on May 17, 2010, 05:33:08 PM

Your link is busted. 

Information in the article indicates that this is civil commitment rather than a continued criminal detention.  In either a case of this or an involuntary psychiatric hold, the decision is still based on the preponderance of evidence that they are a danger to themselves or others. 

The conviction can often serve as that evidence - fact is that handling indefinite incarceration needs to be handled with kid gloves. Perception is easy to mask as the truth.
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Isgrimnur
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« Reply #4 on: May 17, 2010, 05:42:08 PM »

I agree that it needs to be handled with care. 

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President George W. Bush in 2006 signed the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act, which authorized the civil commitment of sexually dangerous federal inmates.

The act, named after the son of "America's Most Wanted" television host John Walsh, was challenged by four men who served prison terms ranging from three to eight years for possession of child pornography or sexual abuse of a minor.

I'm certainly leaning toward keeping the abuse guy in the hole for a long time, but making an example out of the porn possessor makes as much sense as going hardcore after drug users for creating the demand.  Certainly it's a crime and should be, but attempting to civilly commit indefintely someone for possession of an illegal image seems to me to be a bit of overkill.  His actions likely (as I'm not familiar with the case) were not likely directly involved in the exploitation of the child unless he was placing orders or otherwise involved with the producers of said content.
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Zarkon
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« Reply #5 on: May 17, 2010, 06:08:11 PM »

Again, I think the age needs to be part of what's taken into account, both on porn and on actual 'abuse'.  I'm not saying that either are right, again, but I'm saying that there's a difference. 

Quick explanation:  I have a friend (yes, an actual friend) who was in a relationship with an underaged girl.  At the time he was 21-22 (I think) and she was 14.  Yes, it was wrong and illegal, but there was no force.  He got in trouble when her mother found out and pressed charges.  He served no jail time, but had to register as a sex offender, and could not be on the internet for 3 years.  This was going on 10 years ago. 

I, personally, think it's wrong that he (or anyone else in a similar position) should be treated the same as someone who chases after juveniles and actually physically abuses/rapes them.  Doesn't make what he did any more right, admittedly, but the situations are not the same.  It'd be like treating everyone who is found with drugs or drug paraphernalia the same, no matter the amount, the type of drug, or what is being done with it.  They're all illegal, but there are /degrees/ involved.
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Autistic Angel
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« Reply #6 on: May 17, 2010, 06:17:13 PM »

Better that 34 innocent people each serve decades in jail than for one guilty person walk free.

-Autistic Angel
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Blackadar
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« Reply #7 on: May 17, 2010, 06:46:09 PM »

Hi Ho
Hi Ho
The continuing march to the police state we go
Hi Ho Hi Ho Hi Ho
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pr0ner
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« Reply #8 on: May 18, 2010, 05:27:32 AM »

Quote from: Blackadar on May 17, 2010, 06:46:09 PM

Hi Ho
Hi Ho
The continuing march to the police state we go
Hi Ho Hi Ho Hi Ho

Did you notice who the dissenters were?
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« Reply #9 on: May 18, 2010, 02:50:59 PM »

The question is when will another type of offender be deemed unreleasable?  Drug dealers perhaps since you could argue they will probably just go back into the business again?  Any felon deemed likely to head back to crime?  Since rehabilitation is not a goal of incarceration and prisons have become big business with a substantial lobby this could quickly get out of hand.
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Mr. Fed
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« Reply #10 on: May 18, 2010, 05:42:34 PM »

Quote from: pr0ner on May 18, 2010, 05:27:32 AM

Quote from: Blackadar on May 17, 2010, 06:46:09 PM

Hi Ho
Hi Ho
The continuing march to the police state we go
Hi Ho Hi Ho Hi Ho

Did you notice who the dissenters were?

That's because of the nature of this case.

The due process issue -- does it violate somebody's constitutional rights to detain them indefinitely, based on our belief they are "dangerous" -- was settled more than a decade ago by SCOTUS. 

This case raised an enumerated-powers challenge calculated to appeal to conservatives --- an argument that aside from the rights of the detainees, the statute was outside the enumerated powers of Congress and improper on that basis.  Hence the most conservative justices are the dissenters this time.  Those same two justices voted in favor of the indefinite detentions last time, because that was not an enumerated-powers challenge.
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« Reply #11 on: May 20, 2010, 05:30:23 AM »

I was not aware of that.

Thanks, Fed.
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corruptrelic
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« Reply #12 on: June 28, 2010, 01:04:39 AM »

Late to the party, but has anyone actually ever seen how one of these places is run?

There are countless sex offenders out there, but the ones deemed not fit to return to society are placed in a 'civil commitment center' for treatment, which if they actually do it takes around 5 years.
During those 5 years, they are living the life off your tax dollars. They have air conditioning, directv, free medical and dental (well not free, since you're paying for it) have access to all kinds of classes like TABE, GED, CDL, and computer programming, so when they get out they have mastered a skill. They wear civilian clothes and have free roam of their little paradise city.
They have giant LCD tv's in every single dorm (usually 2), playstation 3's and xbox 360's, incoming and outgoing phone lines, psp and xbox 'multiplayer sessions' where they play against eachother in tournaments, a huge gym, a chapel, pool tables, a volleyball and basketball court. It's almost like a Hilton!
For every "resident" housed, we are paying around $37,000 annually to hold them.
And that's just the tip of the iceberg..

So yeah I agree it's good we can detain or commit these guys (sexually violent predators) but if you saw the way these kinds of places are run courtesy of your tax dollar, it'd make you sick.. you can rape and torture a 5 year old kid, and end up in a place like that for the rest of your life, should you refuse 'treatment'.

My solution? Run the commitment centers like a regular prison. At least in Florida, they have basic tv (4,7,10) they have NO air conditioning, have to wear uniforms and live in a very disciplined environment. That'd save the tax payers a lot of money if we ran them the same way.
« Last Edit: June 28, 2010, 01:06:43 AM by corruptrelic » Logged

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Isgrimnur
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« Reply #13 on: June 28, 2010, 03:31:08 AM »

Here, let me find a source for you.  Oh, and by the way, you low-balled the cost numbers by a factor of 2.5 on the average.

Quote
An Associated Press analysis found that the 20 states with so-called “civil commitment” programs will spend nearly $500 million this year alone to confine and treat 5,200 offenders still considered too dangerous to put back on the streets.

The annual costs per offender topped out at $175,000 in New York and $173,000 in California, and averaged $96,000 a year, about double what it would cost to send them to an Ivy League university. In some states, like Minnesota, sex offender treatment costs more than five times more than keeping offenders in prison. And those estimates do not include the considerable legal expenses necessary to commit someone.

And as for the amenities...

Quote
Minnesota opened a 400-bed building last year and plans another expansion at Moose Lake, 110 miles north of the Twin Cities.  The Moose Lake complex, located just off the highway leading to this woodsy Minnesota town, looks like a medium-security prison, with layers of secure doors and guards monitoring cell blocks of patients.

More than 400 men live there behind tall fences topped with razor wire. They spend their days shuffling between meals, group therapy sessions and activities such as painting state park signs. 

The confinement is costly mainly because of the need to hire behavioral therapists, social workers, psychologists and psychiatrists.
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« Reply #14 on: June 28, 2010, 07:04:49 PM »

Quote from: corruptrelic on June 28, 2010, 01:04:39 AM

Late to the party, but has anyone actually ever seen how one of these places is run?

There are countless sex offenders out there, but the ones deemed not fit to return to society are placed in a 'civil commitment center' for treatment, which if they actually do it takes around 5 years.
During those 5 years, they are living the life off your tax dollars. They have air conditioning, directv, free medical and dental (well not free, since you're paying for it) have access to all kinds of classes like TABE, GED, CDL, and computer programming, so when they get out they have mastered a skill. They wear civilian clothes and have free roam of their little paradise city.
They have giant LCD tv's in every single dorm (usually 2), playstation 3's and xbox 360's, incoming and outgoing phone lines, psp and xbox 'multiplayer sessions' where they play against eachother in tournaments, a huge gym, a chapel, pool tables, a volleyball and basketball court. It's almost like a Hilton!
For every "resident" housed, we are paying around $37,000 annually to hold them.
And that's just the tip of the iceberg..

So yeah I agree it's good we can detain or commit these guys (sexually violent predators) but if you saw the way these kinds of places are run courtesy of your tax dollar, it'd make you sick.. you can rape and torture a 5 year old kid, and end up in a place like that for the rest of your life, should you refuse 'treatment'.

My solution? Run the commitment centers like a regular prison. At least in Florida, they have basic tv (4,7,10) they have NO air conditioning, have to wear uniforms and live in a very disciplined environment. That'd save the tax payers a lot of money if we ran them the same way.

Do you have any evidence proving any are actually run as you describe?
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« Reply #15 on: June 28, 2010, 08:44:22 PM »

Quote from: Darkstar One on June 28, 2010, 07:04:49 PM

Do you have any evidence proving any are actually run as you describe?

I've been in over 100 correctional facilities across 6 states and I've never seen one like his description.  But perhaps those are different than a civil commitment center.
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« Reply #16 on: June 28, 2010, 10:34:14 PM »

Quote from: Blackadar on June 28, 2010, 08:44:22 PM

Quote from: Darkstar One on June 28, 2010, 07:04:49 PM

Do you have any evidence proving any are actually run as you describe?

I've been in over 100 correctional facilities across 6 states and I've never seen one like his description.  But perhaps those are different than a civil commitment center.

Is there something about you we should know about..........?             paranoid
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brettmcd
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« Reply #17 on: June 28, 2010, 10:45:35 PM »

Quote from: Scuzz on June 28, 2010, 10:34:14 PM

Quote from: Blackadar on June 28, 2010, 08:44:22 PM

Quote from: Darkstar One on June 28, 2010, 07:04:49 PM

Do you have any evidence proving any are actually run as you describe?

I've been in over 100 correctional facilities across 6 states and I've never seen one like his description.  But perhaps those are different than a civil commitment center.

Is there something about you we should know about..........?             paranoid

You didnt know he was a mime who specializes in performances to prison inmates????     How behind the times are you?    Tongue
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« Reply #18 on: June 29, 2010, 03:47:33 AM »

Even if the description of the facility is even half true it still remains that these people were tried and sentenced and served their time as determined by jury or judge but are then denied their freedom.

I do not doubt that their crimes were severe but if they are so severe then the sentence of the court should be the mechanism to deprive them of their freedom not some administrative trick.

If they can do this to them they can come with other "tricks" as they define other types of undesirables.
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Blackadar
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« Reply #19 on: June 29, 2010, 12:25:35 PM »

Quote from: Scuzz on June 28, 2010, 10:34:14 PM

Quote from: Blackadar on June 28, 2010, 08:44:22 PM

Quote from: Darkstar One on June 28, 2010, 07:04:49 PM

Do you have any evidence proving any are actually run as you describe?

I've been in over 100 correctional facilities across 6 states and I've never seen one like his description.  But perhaps those are different than a civil commitment center.

Is there something about you we should know about..........?             paranoid

I worked with state and local law enforcement officials for 7 years installing communications systems, including ones in jails and prisons. 

Unlike Brett, who spent 7 years as the local prison bitch.  smile
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« Reply #20 on: June 29, 2010, 12:42:13 PM »

Quote from: Jaddison on June 29, 2010, 03:47:33 AM

Even if the description of the facility is even half true it still remains that these people were tried and sentenced and served their time as determined by jury or judge but are then denied their freedom.

I do not doubt that their crimes were severe but if they are so severe then the sentence of the court should be the mechanism to deprive them of their freedom not some administrative trick.

If they can do this to them they can come with other "tricks" as they define other types of undesirables.

Bingo!

Even if the description corruptrelic came up with is true (which I doubt), it doesn't bother me too much. These people have already been punished and have served their time. The idea behind these rehabilitation centers is to make these people safe to release into the general society. Their freedom is taken away from them during this time (I'm continually amazed at how little value people put on freedom when discussions about prisons come up. Freedom is a basic human right, and losing it is a major blow to just about anyone), and giving them some degree of "luxury" during their rehabilitation hardly compensates.

Don't forget that when the treatment is over and the (now cured) sex offenders are released back into society, they will be able to become productive and contribute to society at large (if nothing else, by paying taxes). This way they end up paying back the costs of the treatment in a concrete way.

Don't let the idea of sex offenders having some comfort during their treatment cloud your judgment. I'd be willing to bet that if there was a possibility for them to be instantly cured and released (without having to be neutered or anything like that), every one of them would take it instead of spending more time in treatment.
« Last Edit: June 29, 2010, 12:44:01 PM by TiLT » Logged
corruptrelic
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« Reply #21 on: June 29, 2010, 08:59:31 PM »

There is no "cure", treatment only helps them to not act on their urges. If you like women, it's like telling you that from now on you can only be with men. If you can't do that, then you are taught other ways to not act on your impulses (which can be done - but is far from a "cure"). It's not as black and white as that, but it's an example of how treatment works. You can't cure a person if they don't think there's anything wrong with them to begin with.

Remember the vast majority of sex offenders are released back into the public after serving their time in prison, it's the very select few sexually violent predators that are deemed not safe to return to society that are placed in civil commitment.
Many of them don't believe they need "treatment" and refuse it all together, thus, stay in the system for years because they think it's perfectly acceptable to have sex with children.

I agree they should have some level of comfort and luxury.. sure.. but you have to be INSIDE one of these places to see just how much luxury they get.
And remember all this "luxury" is being paid for by your tax dollars. That's my main issue.

Having worked for the department of corrections in a real prison, they had no air conditioning, basic tv, wore uniforms and had rules and discipline to go by. Whether you are in a real prison or a commitment center, you've lost your freedom because you can't leave either of them any time you want. At both places your basic human needs are met - food, water, shelter, and of course free medical treatment. (Though at DOC if the inmate can afford the medical treatment, he is charged for it.)
So regardless of where you're at - you don't have freedom. One place works well off the tax dollars with just the essentials, while the other one is ran like a Hilton. 
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Isgrimnur
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« Reply #22 on: June 30, 2010, 12:43:38 AM »

We would like to believe you about the level of comfort and luxury, but we're still waiting on a source for your information.
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« Reply #23 on: June 30, 2010, 04:42:18 AM »

Quote from: corruptrelic on June 29, 2010, 08:59:31 PM

There is no "cure", treatment only helps them to not act on their urges.

Actually, it is my understanding that most kinds of pedophilia (if that is what we're talking about) can be cured (and the success rate is high), but it takes many years. Pedophilia isn't really comparable to homosexuality, for example. Most pedophiles are attracted to adults.
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corruptrelic
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« Reply #24 on: June 30, 2010, 11:55:56 AM »

Quote from: Isgrimnur on June 30, 2010, 12:43:38 AM

We would like to believe you about the level of comfort and luxury, but we're still waiting on a source for your information.

Because I work at a civil commitment center and see it with my own eyes every day.. 

There is no cure and we can't tell the courts that. If a resident completes his treatment (usually around 5 years) we tell the courts he has reached his "maximum benefit" and then they decide if they are going to release him back into society or not. Some re-offend, while others are never heard from again.

My example was very black and white, but treatment involves teaching people not to act on their impulses. If you are attracted to blondes, you probably always will be whether or not we tell you that it's wrong. But you can choose to stay away from them on your own free will - even though deep down the desire is still there. The same goes for pedophiles. You can be a pedophile (someone attracted to prepubescent children, usually under 12, by our legal definition) but not act on it.
You can't cure pedophilia anymore than you can "cure" homosexuality. (And I have that in quotes because I don't think there's anything wrong with homosexuality.) You just teach, over years, not to act on the impulse.
And remember once again, the vast, vast majority of sex offenders are released back into public after their prison sentences. It's the select few sexually violent predators that are placed in civil commitment because they are deemed not safe to return to society. Just because you were 20 and your girlfriend was 15 and her parents didn't like you so they pressed charges isn't going to wind you up in a place like this.
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