California’s Supreme Court upholds lower court’s ruling re S.O. early parole

Associated Press . . . The California Supreme Court ruled Monday that inmates who have been convicted of nonviolent sex crimes may be eligible for early parole consideration as part of a ballot measure that nearly two-thirds of voters approved of four years ago. “The initiative’s language provides no indication that the voters intended to allow the (Corrections) Department to create…

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ACLU calls for Michigan Governor to veto SORA changes

By Samuel Dodge . . .  Approved changes to Michigan’s Sex Offender Registration Act are unconstitutional and ineffective at stopping offenders, argues the state’s ACLU chapter in an appeal for Gov. Gretchen Whitmer to veto. State lawmakers approved altering registration protocols for sex offenders during the Legislature’s Wednesday, Dec. 16 session, fulfilling a 4-year-old mandate from the U.S. Court of…

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Colorado Supreme Court bars multiple convictions based on number of images

By Michael Karlik . . . The Colorado Supreme Court has clarified that no matter how many pornographic images an individual possesses, sexual exploitation of a child merits a single charge, which prosecutors had derogatorily deemed a “volume discount on child pornography.” Following the decision, multiple state legislators agreed that the guidelines for prosecuting the crime should spark a conversation…

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Michigan Senate approves tightened restrictions

By Samuel Dodge LANSING, MI – The Michigan Senate voted Wednesday to codify court-recommended changes in the state’s Sex Offender Registration Act. The legislation now only needs Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s signature to become law. State lawmakers approved altering registration protocols for sex offenders during its Wednesday session, fulfilling a 4-year-old mandate from the U.S. Court of Appeals. The federal court…

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Ninth Circuit Reinstates SORA Challenge in Idaho

By Larry . . . This case consisted of a group of 134 plaintiffs who had filed a lawsuit in the United States District Court for the District of Idaho. Their complaint raised a number of claims challenging many aspects of Idaho’s Sex Offender Registration Act (SORA). The trial judge granted the state’s motion to dismiss the complaint. The case…

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Will Michigan legislature ever do right thing?

By William Buhl, J.J. Prescott, and Miriam Aukerman . . . In early 2012, more than eight years ago, five people challenged Michigan’s Sex Offenders Registration Act (SORA) in court, arguing that the registry branded them as dangerous “sex offenders” without any individual review. One was a man — we’ll call him John — who met a woman at a club open only…

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Sex panic: The war on sex offenders, public enemy number one

A longer version of Dr. Fortino’s piece appears in the FEBRUARY issue of Criminal Legal News. By Michael Fortino, Ph.D. . . . Fueled by a “moral panic” that evolved through the mid-2000s, the war on “sex offenders” paralleled the war on drugs and was slated to eventually replace it as our nation’s drug war began to wane in popularity.…

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