Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Can't use libraries or bus stops

Expect this one to fail bigtime when challenged. New curbs placed on sex offenders:

Registered sex offenders in unincorporated Sacramento County are no longer allowed to visit libraries, day care centers, video arcades, skate parks, public swimming pools, county parks, youth sports facilities and bus stops. ...

Libraries and bus stops? It must have been really, really important.

Passed as emergency legislation, the ordinance took effect immediately Tuesday.

I hadn't realized that California libraries and bus stops, not to mention swimming pools, etc., were experiencing suge a huge rash of assaults that emergency legislation was required. Or was this the work product of more compulsive legislators?

This appears to have been applied ex post facto:

Jake Goldenflame, an attorney and registered sex offender, said the addition of libraries to the other list of sites now off-limits for offenders in Sacramento County makes the measure even more vulnerable to challenge. ...

"Why can't I go … look up an item of history?" said Goldenflame, a San Francisco resident who often lobbies the Legislature on the issue.


If so, we would seem to have a little bit of mischaracterization going on:

Jeff Rose, a county assistant chief district attorney, said criminals understand that they lose privileges upon conviction.

Yup. And more and more on an ongoing basis after release. That's a great message to send to those whom you really, really want to go straight after their sentence is served. But hey, they're only sex offenders and the ones we push into re-offending when they otherwise wouldn't don't really hurt anyone, right?

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