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July 26, 2006

Sex offender bills becoming law

As detailed in this USAToday story, the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act is all set to become federal law tomorrow.  This local story explains that the Act is "designed to track sex offenders nationwide and toughen penalties against those who prowl the Internet to find young victims."  I discussed more features of this law in this recent post, but I am still looking for a thoughtful and balanced summary of its key sentencing provisions.

On the state front, this article notes that Delaware's governor "today signed a law that will mandate prison terms of 25 years to life for people convicted of a felony sex offense against a child under the age of 14.  It will also impose the same sentence on people convicted of a second felony sex offense against older teens."

July 26, 2006 at 06:22 PM | Permalink

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The law includes eight new death penalties and eleven new mandatory minimums. One of those minimums would subject the elder of 18 and 17 year old consensual sex partners to ten-year mandatory prison term, and life on the registry, if they cross state lines.

In his remarks, Rep. Scott of Virginia concluded with: "The jury is out as to whether publicly accessible sex offender registers will have any beneficial effect on reducing sex crimes, but the studies that have been done indicate that the registries do not have any effect in reducing sex crimes. And I have seen no study that suggests that the policy of posting the name of juvenile delinquents, as this bill does, on the Internet, serves any constructive purpose.
Of course, programs and grants to assist children and to provide the type of sex offender treatment that studies have been shown that can cut recidivism in half are not in this bill."


Posted by: Ilah | Jul 27, 2006 1:27:21 PM

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