« "Alleyne v. United States, Age as an Element, and the Retroactivity of Miller v. Alabama" | Main | SCOTUS grants cert on federal restitution and state Atkins application cases »

October 21, 2013

Alabama legislators proposing adult day-care "clusters" for sex offenders

As reported in this local article, headlined "Bill Proposes Licensed Residential Sex Offender Clusters," legislators in Alabama are considering a new innovation in the monitoring of sex offenders. Here are the details:

Some Alabama State Representatives are hoping a proposed bill will change the laws surrounding where convicted sexual predators are able to live together. Representatives Kurt Wallace and Paul Beckman are sponsoring the proposal that would make it against the law for sexual predators to live together unless it’s in what they’re calling a licensed, regulated residential sex offender cluster.

The proposed bill is similar to a bill passed into law earlier this year by the Alabama State Legislature. Alabama State Senator Arthur Orr is the sponsor of that bill. It encompasses Morgan County, while the proposed bill will cover the entire state.

In part Senator Orr’s bill made it against the law for convicted sex offenders to live in the same house. ”Studies show that if that is the situation there is much more proclivity for them to sexually offend others in the surrounding area,” Senator Orr says. He says his bill was met with agreement from the Alabama Legislature and Morgan County residents. “Certainly the constituents who had small children who were living near this group sexual offender home, and they certainly wanted something done.”

The proposed bill by Representatives Wallace and Beckman would create what lawmakers call residential sex offenders clusters. The bill spells out what that means. A residential sex offender cluster would be a tract of land where registered sex offenders could live together. An on-site monitor would also be required to live there to supervise the offenders. The clusters would have to be licensed and it would authorize the Department of Mental Health to make rules regulating the clusters.

If passed this proposed bill would require any sex offenders who wanted to live together to live in one of the clusters. It’s proposed if they violated that, it would be punishable by a felony charge. Already Alabama has laws preventing convicted sex offenders from living near a school or their victims. Some officials argue it’s already hard enough for them to find a place to live and this proposed bill would make it even harder....

Lawmakers say the proposed bill would promote public safety, health and confidence. They are expected to take this proposed bill up in the 2014 regular session.

October 21, 2013 at 08:52 AM | Permalink

TrackBack

TrackBack URL for this entry:
http://www.typepad.com/services/trackback/6a00d83451574769e2019b002fc2e6970b

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Alabama legislators proposing adult day-care "clusters" for sex offenders:

Comments

We let em outta jail in Alabama but they can not live with us or with each other but must go to a man cave out in the wilderness and live off lizards.

Posted by: Liberty1st | Oct 21, 2013 8:59:24 AM

This sounds like the old antebellum slave laws that forbade more than two slaves from congregating together on public town squares for fear that these slaves might use such a venue for fomenting insurrection against their white oppressor/owners. Does Alabama fear that these sex offenders might decide to take a page out of militant black slaves', and later Black Panthers', books by banding together to form radical political self-defense groups and have it out with the authorities as happened during the race riots of the 1960's and early 1970's?

Posted by: william r. delzell | Oct 21, 2013 9:19:43 AM

I have a dead simple solution for taking care of sex offender clusters -- take away the residency restrictions. Their sole function is a a sort of crime control theater. They give the impression of public safety, while in all likelihood actually undermining public safety.

The fear-mongering of sex offenders living across from schools is the impetus behind such residency restrictions, but they evince a badly misinformed view on the etiology of sexual offending (and, consequently, a similarly badly misinformed proposal on how to prevent them). Predatory-type sexual offenders (i.e., the minority of sex offenders whose victims were strangers) tend not to perpetrate near where they reside, instead traveling to different neighborhoods. The vast majority of sexual offending occurs within the context of social relationships, and the vast majority of those instances are within the family.

Residency restrictions do however make it incredibly difficult to rejoin society, to have a stable work, family, and social life and to be closer to essential services such as counseling. All of these things are shown to reduce recidivism, whereas NIMBY-ing our way to the bottom has been shown to spike homelessness and increase rates of recidivism.

To be sure, externalizing the danger of sexual offenses is seductive, but only results in much greater harm than there would be otherwise.

Posted by: Guy | Oct 21, 2013 10:26:55 AM

This is like a return to leper colonies. Crazy idea.
If I'm not mistaken, these SO's have ALREADY served their time, let them live where they want to live, if they re-offend then put them back in prison. Since when is it OK to pre-judge people on what they "might do in the future?" Guess the government officials are using their crystal balls again.

Posted by: kat | Oct 21, 2013 2:04:32 PM

Somehow the music group The Police's 'Every Breath You Take' comes to mind as an apt anthem for the state of Alabama:

Every breath you take
Every move you make
Every bond you break
Every step you take
I'll be watching you

Every single day
Every word you say
Every game you play
Every night you stay
I'll be watching you

Oh can't you see
You belong to me

Posted by: shades of the NSA | Oct 21, 2013 4:13:34 PM

And they don't care where murderers live. Go figure.

Posted by: athought | Oct 21, 2013 6:32:19 PM

Six great comments and counting. If anybody does not see the unconstitutionality of residency restrictions after you have served your sentence, they are a mental midget. To hell with PC language!

Our 9 SC judicial brethren in black pajamas are COWARDS and Mentally Deficient. They could resolve this imbecility once and for all, but even they could get it wrong like ObamaCare.

Posted by: albeed | Oct 21, 2013 6:54:06 PM

william r. delzell --

I congratulate you on being the one person on this thread willing to his full name.

"Does Alabama fear that these sex offenders might decide to take a page out of militant black slaves', and later Black Panthers', books by banding together to form radical political self-defense groups and have it out with the authorities as happened during the race riots of the 1960's and early 1970's?"

And how did that work out for the rioters?

Do you think the states should allow their laws to be dictated by riot?

Last I looked, people in a functioning democracy who felt they were harmed by the law had two options: learn to live with it or get it changed by peaceful means.

I personally didn't care for the results of the 2008 or 2012 elections. My taxes are going up. What's my remedy? Go into some IRS office and start shooting?

Once sex offenders buy into the idea that violence is the answer to their grievances, it won't be long before they regret the results. And it's not just that the resort to private violence over public persuasion is morally wrong (although it is). It's that in the ensuing guerilla war between the tiny number of SO's and the rest of us, would you like to take a guess about who's going to get wiped out?

Posted by: Bill Otis | Oct 21, 2013 7:02:29 PM

"What's my remedy? Go into some IRS office and start shooting?"

Most certainly not, but if ample resources are available an offshore relocation might prove to be the best option.

Posted by: shades of the NSA | Oct 21, 2013 8:05:39 PM

shades of the NSA --

My own view is that obeying the law, rather than skirting it no matter how distasteful it might be, is "the best option."

Posted by: Bill Otis | Oct 21, 2013 9:23:57 PM

Ok, we'll all obey the law. So, when a day care decides to open up across the street from my house ( or within the prescribed feet from my house the state arbitrarily decides; 500 in Illinois and 1000 in Missouri) and the state forces me to move from my house....Then I'll investigate offshore relocation.

Posted by: athought | Oct 21, 2013 10:48:57 PM

Yippee.

There is a mental midget willing to use his real name. What a joke?

Last I looked, people in a functioning democracy who felt they were harmed by the law had two options: learn to live with it or get it changed by peaceful means."

For one, we are supposed to be a constitutional republic and not a democracy. Real democracy is nothing short of Mob Rule. Oh yeah, that's what we have but just try to justify it with changing the meaning of words.

I'm just following the law. That eventually worked real well at Nuremburg. I am just obeying just orders and following the law!

First show me how you pull 500 feet, 1000 feet or 2500 feet out of you butt to justify it. I mean, any hindrance is OK, so long as we perceive it to be, just as in Jim Crow laws, right? After all, it is only Mob Rule!

Posted by: albeed | Oct 22, 2013 12:19:45 AM

The justification for violent retaliation was reached a long time ago. Make no mistake that we are in a war.

But families that are listed on these Registries should continue to react as always - ensure that the Registries are worse than worthless. Be around children all the time. Maintain relationships with many people who have no idea that you are Registered. It's trivial.

Why have these thieving, un-American, criminal, terrorist politicians failed to get the rest of their big government Registries created? Because they are weak.

Posted by: FRegistryTerrorists | Oct 22, 2013 12:33:01 AM

albeed --

Your characteristic and robotic recourse to middle school "insights" like (1) "We're a republic not a democracy;" (2) Nuremberg (i.e., America is just like Nazi Germany); and (3) Jim Crow (ummm, SO's are disproportionately white) does indeed reveal a "mental midget."

I do not blame you for refusing to give your name, however. It may not speak well for your courage, but it speaks well indeed for your judgment.

Posted by: Bill Otis | Oct 22, 2013 7:17:19 AM

athought --

"Then I'll investigate offshore relocation."

Have a good time!

Posted by: Bill Otis | Oct 22, 2013 7:21:12 AM

Bill:

Again, you attack the messenger and not the message. Why is that, a dearth of real ideas?

OK, I don't like to but I'll do the same.

Your characteristic, robotic and federally etched discourse regarding 1) mandatory minmums and 2) the supposed resulting crime reduction demonstrate that original thoughts and thinking were not a part of your college and legal education, were they?

Your government to be functional needs to be respected. To be respected, it needs to be rational.

It is neither functional, rational nor respected. It creates its own Classic Example Hate Crime Laws (SO Laws), trying to figure out how to get George Zimmerman for a hate crime, but creates protected classes (victims) all around. I would say that Equal Protection under The Law is a farce. That you can also be made to forfeit your assets WITHOUT a criminal charge is a CRIME! Who gets these proceeds?

That what applies to its citizens, does not apply to its lawmakers and law enforcers is a travesty. Have you ever seen how many people get tied up in your system by "resisting arrest"? How many times is saying "What the F--K", while being placed in handcuffs resisting arrest? How moronic is that? I can give you twenty cases of blue-front testilying right now where cops got away with murder and were NOT prosecuted. This is not merely errors in our system (the best ever) but a way of keeping power by taking from productive citizens at the point of a gun and tax-payed goons, i.e., taxes.

BTW, I am not a lawyer but an engineer (Thank God!). I am comfortably retired and do not wish to continue working so that ever more of my earned wealth would go to worthless idiots suckling at the public trough. I have known and know many in politics and LE and even had a policeman relative die in the line of duty. I have never been charged with any crime, but cry for my country.

As I have said before, twice I required the assistance of law enforcement and they were USELESS. I can see why because they have learned well from their unions, lawmakers and federal peers.

The truth, you should dig a little deeper and stop the platitudes!

Posted by: albeed | Oct 22, 2013 9:14:51 AM

In response to albeed's column, I did not advocate the use of violence against this law. I simply warned that such a law might BREED violent resistance against it if several sex offenders feel that they no longer have anything to lose and learn of other groups who felt themselves driven to have violent confrontations with law enforcement. It does not require a Ph.D. degree to realize that some sex offenders might eventually put two-and-two together and do what other have-not groups have done in the past when they felt that they had finally run out of peaceful, legal, and non-violent options. I pray that day never occurs just as much as you do, but it could. That was my point!

Posted by: William R. Delzell | Oct 22, 2013 9:32:04 AM

Albeed at 6:54 PM (Oct 21): "If anybody does not see the unconstitutionality of residency restrictions after you have served your sentence, they are a mental midget. To hell with PC language!"

Albeed states at 12:19 AM: "There is a mental midget willing to use his real name. What a joke?"

Albeed at 9:14 AM: "Again, you [Bill] attack the messenger and not the message. Why is that, a dearth of real ideas?"

Let me guess, you take your split personality disorder medications in the afternoon?

I am actually sympathetic to many of the complaints some have about registries and SO policy. Unfortunately, every single time I read posts here from the complainers, I am forced to second-guess those sympathies. They fly right by legitimate complaints and do not stop until they get to the ravings of madmen.

Sample logic:

1. SO laws make life of SOs difficult with registries and harassment.

2. These laws are unconstitutional (illegal).

3. We should break laws and kill (or at least use violence against) those who support these laws.

What a bunch of maroons.

Posted by: TarlsQtr1 | Oct 22, 2013 10:44:56 AM

TarlsQtr1 --

Didn't you get the memo? Vigilantism is OK when deployed against aspects of the government you don't like. Following the law is only for suckers (and nimwits who don't understand that we're living in Nazi Germany).

What are you, some species of Puritan? You're the kind of guy who would put his kid in some regimented, pre-NRA group like the Boy Scouts.

Oh, the shame of it.

Posted by: Bill Otis | Oct 22, 2013 11:43:51 AM

Why have these thieving, un-American, criminal, terrorist politicians failed to get the rest of their big government Registries created? Because they are weak.

Posted by: FRegistryTerrorists | Oct 22, 2013 12:09:54 PM

Bill,

You got it half right. My son is in the Boy Scouts, but he is ALREADY a lifetime member of the NRA.

PS Stop the name calling you jerk.

Posted by: TarlsQtr1 | Oct 22, 2013 12:41:31 PM

no offense bill and you as well tarls! You both seem to forget the real second amendment of the united states constitution. It was put in place by our govt's creators! the PEOPLE! Unfortunatley they were too polite to state it in normal english!

If so it would have been written something like this!

"This new government is an experiment in self rule! Therefore all americans have the right to bear arms Since if this govt fails to function as we demand or it's agents get too big for their britches! We reserve the right to SHOOT them!"

and even after decades of get guns off the street campaigns there is still something like 5 or 6 guns in american for every man, woman and child.

As for violence. You might better look again. Most of our military is everywhere but here. The transport does not exist to move them back at any quick speed. Plus that almost 1,000,000 ex sex offenders includes military, scientiests, spy's hell even a former head ICE boss! If they really decided to go out with a bang. This criminal govt of ours would be having wet dreams of the good ol days of alquida!

You can only fuck with people so long. Face it the rest of us not as big a bunch of suckers as the americna indian. Who trusted the criminal govt of the united states even after lieing during 2002 diff and seperate treaties!

We KNOW they are a bunch of lieing sacks of shit!

Posted by: rodsmith | Oct 22, 2013 2:48:26 PM

TQ (@ 10:44 AM):

I wondered when one of Bill's LE cousins would appear. Where is ADMKS? As for my meds, you're right. I am having a hard time determining which of you is the psycopath and who is the sociopath. I'll have to ponder that issue a little while longer. I'll take another Prozac in the mean time. Bill can defend himself quite well, Thank You!

Your understanding of my words reminds me of a second rate Appalachian detective or detective wanna be who only writes what he wants to hear and misunderstands the majority of the discussion. Are you trying to get a job with the FEDS?

BTW:

John Roberts was the USSG in the Smith vs. Doe case (argued - October, 2002). One of Kennedy's major reasonings for finding in favor of the US in Smith vs Doe (May - 2003) was there was a reasonable governmental safety interest and the high rate of recidivism of SO's. The most definitive results for SO recidivism were underway at that time and finally released in the Bureau of Justice Statistics November 2003 study. The rate of recidivism for S0s released in 1993 was about 1 in 20, vs over 2 in 3 for most other crime categories except murder.

The question is did the USSG commit a Bradey Violation (of sorts) by either delaying the publication of this study or not letting preliminary results out for USSC consideration?

I wouldn't put it past my government.

Posted by: albeed | Oct 22, 2013 4:28:54 PM

TarlsQtr1 --

I know he's in the Scouts. But I didn't know until now that he's in the NRA.

I wonder whether, if he wears an NRA tee-shirt to school, they'll try to suspend him for "inciting violence" or promoting an "unwelcoming atmosphere" or whatever the liberal fascists are up to these days.

In a way, I hope they'd try it. In the state where you used to live, they might, but in the one you're in now, they have too much sense. Anyway, if they did try it, I'd pay you to let me be his lawyer.

Posted by: Bill Otis | Oct 22, 2013 5:49:51 PM

"My own view is that obeying the law, rather than skirting it no matter how distasteful it might be, is "the best option."

I'm sure many German people also felt the same way in 1939 as their longtime Jewish neighbors and friends were hauled off to the camps. How depressing, guess there will always be people who will never be able to see beyond the end of their noses. Best of luck to you fella.

Posted by: shades of the NSA | Oct 22, 2013 7:36:17 PM

shades of the NSA --

That's it! Since the United States is like Nazi Germany, you get to make your own law, follow your own rules, do as you wish, and condemn as foolish anyone who has doubts about your self-ratifying lawlessness and vigilantism.

Far out.

I would say, "Best of luck to you fella," but it would be inapt. It's more on point to wish luck to those unfortunate enough to have to live around you, and be at the mercy of the Man Who Decides The Rules All By Himself.

Posted by: Bill Otis | Oct 22, 2013 11:26:29 PM

Albeed stated: "Your understanding of my words reminds me of a second rate Appalachian detective or detective wanna be who only writes what he wants to hear and misunderstands the majority of the discussion. Are you trying to get a job with the FEDS?"

And your words remind me of one of my social promotion college freshmen who believes everyone from Kentucky lives in Appalachia and is digging coal in Hazard. A nice piece of bigotry on your part though.

Albeed, If there is an alternative interpretation of you calling those who disagree with you a "mental midget", then feel free to explain. I wonder why you did not in your earlier post?

If there is an alternative interpretation of you scolding Bill for "attacking the messenger", then feel free to explain. I wonder why you did not in your earlier post?

You are really a great guy, Albeed, just sooooooo misunderstood...

Posted by: TarlsQtr1 | Oct 23, 2013 9:54:55 AM

Bill,

That is one reason why we home school. That said, you are correct that it would be a big surprise if someone here tried such nonsense. The people here recently voted gun/hunting rights into the state constitution and one of the favorite sports in our schools is archery.

Posted by: TarlsQtr1 | Oct 23, 2013 9:58:28 AM

Wrong bill. What some of us are saying is that we are in FACT going down the same road Germany did in the 1930's. We know where they ended up and it's looking like we are about at the same place and don't like it.

We also feel that if the govt refuses to change direction and move back toward a CONSTUTITIONAL GOVT as required by our founding documents. Then we reserve the right the founders put into it under the 2nd amendment. To FORCE them too if they keep pushing.

Posted by: rodsmith | Oct 23, 2013 11:40:02 PM

You think it can't happen here. Your living in a dream world!

Considering the current lvl of trust in the govt! and remember after the last shutdonw 95% of those asked think it's past time to replace the ENTIRE CONGRESS!

That during the next round of elections some slick talker and thier group couldn't put up a group of candidates who's main seling point would be. We've never been in congress before. But hell we couldn't do WORSE! now could we? Just give us a chance and we will clean up washington?

This is the same thing hitler did and the public was so sick and tired of the usless fuckups they bought it and gave him the power legally. Then of cours he violated the law "constitution" to redo it the way he wanted!

Sound familiar?

Posted by: rodsmith | Oct 23, 2013 11:43:21 PM

rodsmith.....AMEN...

Posted by: shades of the NSA | Oct 24, 2013 8:32:48 PM

Maybe we should pass a law saying politicians should not be around each other all the time and anti-cluster them, its a civil matter right?.

What about other violent criminals,, are you saying drug dealers, arsonists, terrorists, gang members, and such should live amongst each other? Should rural areas have more offenders, I don't get the humor in the bill, people say we should have concentration camps for offenders, but anti clustering would mean more difficulty in tracking folks, it would force non-offenders to live with offenders, brilliant?

So is this like nazi germany, far from it, but it has a certain element of it, the state can have a range of offenses even non-sexual offenses and put folks on a "SEX REGISTRY", the word "SEX" is a popular propaganda tool that plays into people taboos, by allowing the government to have unchecked power to place people in a "sex registry" and make folks life impossible and violating their rights after sentencing, its a dangerous tool. In fact its powerful, which is why politicians and prosecutors push for certain offenses to be included on such registry.

Posted by: Kris | Jan 18, 2014 2:14:31 PM

Post a comment

In the body of your email, please indicate if you are a professor, student, prosecutor, defense attorney, etc. so I can gain a sense of who is reading my blog. Thank you, DAB