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February 11, 2006

A registry for meth offenders?

Sex offender registries are in place in nearly every state and are now nationally coordinated (details here and here), Mike Coan, a Georgia state representative, brings a new spin to the registry idea through this commentary:

Sex offenders ... must register with the state Department of Corrections.  Residents can check a Web site to find out whether sex offenders live in their ZIP code.  With the growing problem of methamphetamine abuse and crimes related to it, we must now take the same steps to "out" offenders who bring this dangerous drug into our communities. That's why I have introduced legislation to create the Methamphetamine Offender Registry, which would be administered by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation....

The registry is necessary because the production, distribution and use of this powerful street drug is the source of so much crime, ranging from robbery, theft, forgery, child abuse and neglect to a host of violent offenses....  Just as sex offenders do irreparable harm to children, meth abusers also harm innocent children.  The addiction to this street drug is so powerful that addicts neglect their families, spend all their wages buying meth and behave extremely erratically, sometimes abusing children and spouses....

Information is power, and when residents have the ability to find out who lives in their community — whether it is a sex offender or a meth offender — they can make better decisions about how they live their lives.  Gov. Sonny Perdue has declared meth abuse to be perhaps the worst scourge on Georgians of all income levels today. I believe a meth registry is one more step we can take to help combat this problem.

UPDATE: Gideon here at a Public Defender notes this interesting report from Connecticut, which discusses registry laws and notes that Kansas, Montana, and Oklahoma require violent offenders to register.  Gideon asks: "Why not require all offenders to register?"

February 11, 2006 at 07:54 AM | Permalink

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» Violent offender registries from a Public Defender
I saw this post on SLP about a registry for meth offenders being proposed in Georgia and that reminded me of an OLR report I read a few days back, about states with registries for violent offenders.We found three states [Read More]

Tracked on Feb 11, 2006 6:35:22 PM

Comments

Dumbest. Idea. Ever.

Posted by: Scott | Feb 11, 2006 2:29:51 PM

The meth registry is already being done in TN. The proposed goes after dealers and producers, not users. What's the problem?

Posted by: M.C. | Mar 20, 2006 1:40:08 AM

Thank you for posting your opinion on this topic ... I have, in the past few weeks, seen an ample amount of stories about meth offenders, and i myself have thought about how horrific any crime is that involves Methamphetamine... I completly agree with you on the fact that a registry would definitly act as a deterant to those using or considering Meth. The public deserves the right to know who uses it, where they are and other such information concerning those offenders and their history of offense.
- Student of P.D. University

Posted by: MaryCatherine | Dec 9, 2006 3:27:35 PM

this is for the greater public good. It's good that they finally getting around to do it.

Posted by: Registry Fix Review, RegFix Registry Cleaner | Feb 14, 2008 9:24:24 AM

As a convicted meth manufacturer, (in kansas) I can say that this registry law is ridiculous. I have turned my life around, drug free for 5 years, and now i have to carry around a drivers license with big red letters that say "registered offender"...not drug offender, not violent offender, just registered offender. What are peoples first thoughts when they see this? Duh...sex offender...Kansas is not looking to protect anyone or make anyone aware of someones past behavior, they are trying to shame someone. I did 5 years in prison for my crime and now just want to get on with life..but kansas has seen fit to mark me with this scarlet letter. I really would have no problem with "registered drug offender" but the generic "registered offender" is purposely designed to shame and lump drug offenders with sex offenders...

Posted by: Brad | Feb 28, 2008 10:20:52 AM

I agree with Brad from Kansas. Our country makes criminals pay for their actions with prison time, probation and a number of other forms of discipline that are deemed fit and final as punishment. Why would the Gov't want to put a drug user, abuser or manufacturer in the same category with child molesters by using this registry and putting "registered offender" on a license. What gets me is what about MURDERERS? Doesn't it seem like they might be a little bit more dangerous than someone who used drugs or even uses drugs? It just kills me, no pun intended, that we might have someone who murdered living next door but not know it 'cause the Big Brother doesn't think it's as bad as a "meth offender". Drugs and drug policy is just a way for politicians to get votes. They can count on senior citizens and those who have never tried drugs, but insist on telling the rest of us what doing drugs is all about, to vote for them if they use "The (failing) War on Drugs" as a stepping stone. Promise to crack down on drug users and sellers, while some of them are using drugs at the same time, and you are gonna get certain votes. There are way bigger problems than drugs in this nation that need to be handeled. Start with our schools and getting kids from the poorest neighborhoods up to the prep school students educated and maybe they won't use drugs because they will make better choices in life because of better education and more hope for their own futures. If they do use drugs hopefully they will just use recreationally and go on to be a productive person for their community and our country.

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Posted by: johnnysmith | Jul 12, 2008 9:54:14 AM

I have one word for this registry, .................
R-E-H-A-B-I-L-I-T-A-T-I-O-N! Where is the "recovery" in forcing someone who's already paid they're dept to society into registering. Habitual offenders maybe. Anyone who's been cooking Meth, believe me has neighbors who know it. Where is the fresh start in this policy? Are Felony DUI offenders required to register also? If not, why? If you get busted for Meth one time, you do more prison time than someone who's shot someone but if you get a DUI, you get what, two three more chances to go out and kill someone. Meth is killing our society alright; not just the ones infected with the disease of addiction but the ones who continue to make it too hard for those to stay straight and become a productive part of society. How can anyone support this bill? How are you going to stop this if you don't allow people to start over? They can't start over with the label "registered offender". And how is that going to effect the children of offenders who have truly changed thier lives? No wonder we are not getting any where with the war on drugs! Maybe someone should run the numbers; I think you'd find out that they are higher for drug addicts than they are for alcoholics. Talk about needing a program! There is a name for making money from someone else's hardship, one of them would be exploitation.

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Posted by: Error Nuker review | Mar 4, 2009 4:09:00 PM

There are way bigger problems than drugs in this nation that need to be handeled. Start with our schools and getting kids from the poorest neighborhoods up to the prep school students educated and maybe they won't use drugs because they will make better choices in life because of better education and more hope for their own futures.

Posted by: registry cleaner | Oct 27, 2009 4:26:06 PM

So i find it interesting , after having been on both sides of the spectrum , how i can do my prison time and all of my probation time except for the last three weeks they up and change the law here in kansas, now i am required to register as a meth offender for the next ten years , if you think the public should be aware of who is doing meth , look at your school teachers , doctors , lawyers , students , bankers and anyone else around you . You would be suprised as to how many people are doing such a thing and you dont even know it. So i have to suffer for another ten years not only paying 20 $ every 4 months and a new drivers liscense every year but the ridiculed looks from people at quik trip and caseys and anywhere else i go and have to show my id , including everytime i use my debit card it seems , who is it really helping , what i would like to understand is why am i on the registered sex offenders list when i am not a sex offender i have a meth case ? what gives them the right to do such a thing i pay my dues to society as proposed by the judge and yet oh wait here we wanna keep tabs on you for another ten years , u know what the penalty for not registering is , 52 months in prison , my original sentance was only 24 months , u want to know a real astonishing fact, repeat fact , there are more drug overdoses in the country every year from doctors prescribing the wrong medicine then there are from street drug dealers dont believe me look for the cdc reports

Posted by: Jon | May 31, 2010 1:27:52 PM

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