Jacob Wetterling’s mother urges reforming the registry

The Free Press, Mankato, Minn.

Patty Wetterling lost a son to the actions of a sex offender. But she now has misgivings about a sex offender registry she helped create.

Wetterling’s son Jacob was abducted and killed in 1989 in central Minnesota by an area man. After Jacob’s disappearance, Wetterling worked to establish a sex offender registry that would help flag offenders for law enforcement. (The man who 27 years later admitted to Jacob’s abduction and killing would not have actually been on such a registry because he’d never been charged or convicted of a sex crime.)

Wetterling and others are urging the Legislature to consider reforming the registry so it doesn’t cast such a wide net, snagging a high number of juvenile offenders, some who haven’t even had a conviction or had committed more minor offenses, such as public urination.

And getting off the list is difficult. Attorney Jim Fleming, a former chief public defender in Mankato who now works in Ramsey County, told the Star Tribune that a man in his 30s came to him because he was put on the registry as a 13-year-old. His 10-year period on the list restarted after a disorderly conduct charge, and then again after another unrelated charge. Fleming had to tell the man there was no way to appeal his time on the list.

The Legislature needs to review the registry and change it so that youth who don’t belong on the list stay off of it.

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  • Author
    • #82385 Reply
      A Mistake They Made

      There is an honest lady. Bless you!

    • #82393 Reply
      Tim in WI

      Her poor chld was kidnapped from a small group walking around without adult supervision. Why none of the others protested Jacob leaving the group is beyond me. Obviously none of them were familiar with the perp yet trusting jacob went along while the others returned home. Something about his story doesn’t piece together completely despite press reports. Some reports deny to sexual component while others make a second hand tie whereby another person claimed attack by the same guy, but little evidence to it was produced. Meanwhile Ms. Whetterling is left to just wonder and regret. A nightmarish path to be sure. What mother wouldn’t cry out for an ounce of prevention?

      Enter the religious reliance upon the database to fix social ill. Yea! That’ll fix it.
      Oops, guess not. Who protects our children from it? By selecting for unfettered and unconstitutional use of it they exponentially increased the threat to humanity from the people’s use. When machine value outweighs human value. Free men are paid to maintain property or do so by the own volition. All else or any other alternative disposition is plain slavery.

    • #82416 Reply

      “ The man who 27 years later admitted to Jacob’s abduction and killing would not have actually been on such a registry because he’d never been charged or convicted of a sex crime.”

      And that’s where she went wrong. This is where they ALL go wrong. The lawmakers make sure to keep it hidden that the perpetrator had no prior record. Much like the nanny who molested Lauren Book in FL.
      The more the legislature can keep the public thinking that a person is BORN with their criminal record, the more they can fear monger for their voter base.

      • #82492 Reply
        Tim in WI

        Right, But head over to Wikipedia and you’ll read about a second hand tie to molestation on the basis of another kids report presumably of the same guy.
        Like you say, it is only anecdotally tied to the necessities of registration. Jabob’s case proves to much with respect to how easily fear based reaction can be used toward propaganda campaigns and hidden agendas of unfettered use of machine database. Obviously the thing was and is helpful but opting to enslavement spells the end to a human republic.

        • #82619 Reply
          H n H

          “Obviously the thing was and is helpful but…..”

          Exactly how, and in what way is it obvious that any aspect of the registry ever was or is helpful?

    • #82444 Reply

      Everyone acts like the sex offender registery started out with good intentions. But that’s crap. There is no go to come when you serve a life sentence. Especially when it’s a lie. There are people on the registry that never done anything to be there but that doesn’t matter. Does it. We still get punished why. Politics

    • #82464 Reply

      All laws should be rational laws PERIOD. But SO laws went leaps and bounds beyond. And it’s always about these poster stories that everyone right up the chain at the DoJ chose to manipulate for THEIR gain. They made an impossible system…impossible to navigate, impossible to reform. Nobody wants to step-up but that’s what it’s going to take, everyone everywhere picking themselves up by the bootstraps and tackling this giant green blob.

      If you’re alive you need to be in the fight.

    • #82626 Reply
      Erich Raulfestone

      Its all about the money!!!

    • #82702 Reply
      Nu Bing

      It’s not just youth that should stay off of it. It has become worthless SPAM that provides very little protection and only serves to limit job prospects for offenders – some of which urinated in public as adults (not just kids). It should be limited to only violent sexual offenders, and that should not include those that perform unforced sodomy in states that are unfriendly to the LGQT public. It should also not include cases of statutory laws being invoked when otherwise situations would be considered consensual and not coerced.

      The registry also prevents those labelled as victims but do not consider themselves victims from either seeking counseling to understand why they are labelled as such, or speaking out against being labelled as such. They may be afraid of causing harm to someone they have feelings for. So they are cut off from possible healing, sometimes into adult-hood for cases there is no statute of limitations. You don’t think a so-called victim would protect someone they feel they had consensual sex with from harm? Think again.

    • #82755 Reply
      NH Registrant

      Mrs Wetterling is just as much a pawn of the state as Mrs Kanka.

      Their horrible experiences were used to push legislation that was PRIMARILY intended for easy money and easy votes. What politician is going to defend registrants? It would end their career.

      The witch hunting never ended.

      I feel bad for what happened to Mrs Wetterling and Mrs Kanka. I feel even worse knowing that slimy politicians (many of whom have MASSIVE amounts of skeletons in their OWN closets) are using them for personal, financial, and political gain.

      As long as there’s cash to be had in it – and as long as people remain ignorant due to propaganda – the registry will continue to exist as it always has: unconstitutional and shameful. Everyone is lumped in together, and the propaganda is as prevalent as ever, because it makes money and takes the attention off the REAL criminals : politicians.

    • #83134 Reply

      So you mean to tell me that a SO registry can prevent a person from commiting a crime. Say Jo Is A S0. How in the hell can the registry stop Jo from walking to a playground and abducting a kid? Please tell me how? And you mean to tell me he can’t live 2000 feet from a school but can live 2001 feet. Lmao the registry is a joke. A 15 year old girl lied about her age and sent a older got some photos and now the guy is on the registry for life because of something he looked at. Never even touched the girl. Come on. This is ridiculous. All the registry is..is showing a persons crime and making the persons life harder.

      • #83155 Reply

        I’ve been saying that for as long as the registry’s been around.

        But going a little further, what did the politicians expect the public to do with the information that they claim is there so they can “take steps to protect themselves and their children from these monsters”? In 20+ years, I’ve never seen one suggestion from law makers or LE on what those steps would be. The closest is “Don’t leave your children alone with them” as though leaving them alone with a stranger who is not registered is perfectly safe.

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