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June 20, 2018

"Fourth Amendment Constraints on the Technological Monitoring of Convicted Sex Offenders"

The title of this post is the title of this new paper available via SSRN authored by Ben McJunkin and J.J. Prescott.  Here is its abstract:

More than forty U.S. states currently track at least some of their convicted sex offenders using GPS devices.  Many offenders will be monitored for life.  The burdens and expense of living indefinitely under constant technological monitoring have been well documented, but most commentators have assumed that these burdens were of no constitutional moment because states have characterized such surveillance as “civil” in character — and courts have seemed to agree.

In 2015, however, the Supreme Court decided in Grady v. North Carolina that attaching a GPS monitoring device to a person was a Fourth Amendment search, notwithstanding the ostensibly civil character of the surveillance.  Grady left open the question whether the search — and the state’s technological monitoring program more generally — was constitutionally reasonable.  This Essay considers the doctrine and theory of Fourth Amendment reasonableness as it applies to both current and envisioned sex offender monitoring technologies to evaluate whether the Fourth Amendment may serve as an effective check on post-release monitoring regimes.

June 20, 2018 at 04:47 PM | Permalink


In this sort of inquiry, I really hope the Courts draw lines depending on the seriousness of the original offense, and also based on the offender's age at the time.

Posted by: William Jockusch | Jun 23, 2018 8:57:27 AM

Again, it makes no sense that more than 40 states do this for $EX crimes and not for hundreds of other types of crimes, for life. That alone makes it idiotic BS. And of course the fact that plenty of people are making a lot of money from it is completely immoral. A main motivation for this BS is always Nanny Big Government (NBG) and the money that goes with it.

Way back well over a decade ago, I complained to the criminal legislators of the criminal regime of the state in which I lived about their retroactive probation extension and added harassment against me and one of the stupid pieces of shit told me that I was lucky that I did not have to wear a GPS monitor, like some people were newly and retroactively being forced to do. I told the piece of shit that I was not the lucky one and that he was. I'm not sure that he was smart enough to understand what I meant.

Perhaps many people deserve to be monitored for life. But for those who don't, I'd love to see them ditch the devices, murder a bunch of criminal legislators, and then leave to a country that hates America. But it's just a dream that likely won't ever come to fruition.

On the flip side, if our criminal regimes could figure out some completely non-intrusive way (an embedded microchip?) to monitor a person's location all of the time, I would accept that monitoring if it meant that I had no obligations whatsoever regarding their immoral $EX Offender Registries ($ORs). Then they could waste as much time, money, and resources as they liked "tracking" me. As long as I had no obligations at all. Believe me, at this point, I don't give a squirt of piss about who knows that I am listed on the NBG $ORs or what they think about it or me. Could. Not. Possibly. Care. Less. Just don't interact, look, or talk to me. Because I'd just as soon put a bullet between your eyes as allow you to enjoy your $ORs one more day.

Because the $ORs exist, there must be hate. There must be war.

Posted by: FRegistryTerrorists | Jun 26, 2018 9:06:09 AM


Based on our supposedly "constitutional" form of government, "you do the crime, you pay the time," is acceptable. Given that the SOR is based not on facts but on emotions, common sense tells me that it's unconstitutional. I DO NOT CARE that SCOTUS (Supreme Court of the United States says it's constitutional means absolutely nothing to me.

We are now a nation of victims. As one who traveled throughout the world and seen how other countries treat their citizens, the squalor in which the people live, and the general hopelessness, I'm disgusted by Americans who are offended by anything at any and every turn. GET OVER IT, AMERICA! "We the People," through our arrogance and apathy in regards to our politicians, have contributed to the deaths of more REAL innocent victims in Iraq, Afghanistan, South America, and right here at home than all the sex offenders on the SOR have ever committed.

"Because the $ORs exist, there must be hate. There must be war." You hit the nail right on the head!

I did my 10 years, that should be the end of it.

Posted by: Oswaldo | Jul 7, 2018 1:48:44 PM

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