Sexual offender residency bans are ridiculous, says Ohio RSOL

By Tim Botos . . . A sex offender moved into the Avondale neighborhood a few years ago.

“And a lot of residents weren’t happy about it,” said Anthony DeGirolamo, president of the Avondale Community Improvement Association, comprised of the 374 homeowners who live in the upscale area, west of the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

But residents had no recourse.

So, they’ve made sure it can’t happen again.

The association recently added a clause to the neighborhood’s deed restrictions. It prohibits a “sex offender/child-victim offender,” and for whom the county sheriff is required to provide community notification of the offender’s address, from living in Avondale.

That language effectively bans Tier III sex offenders from moving into Avondale in the furture. . . . 

The end product, a nine-page document, was filed at the Stark County Recorder’s Office in February.

Language in the modifications was drafted by Kaman & Cusimano, a Cleveland law firm dedicated to condominium and homeowner association rules and laws. Managing partner Jay Cusimano said sex offender bans are common, especially in new developments. . . .

Bans are ridiculous, said Barbara Wright, a volunteer advocate with Ohio Rational Sex Offenherse Laws.

She said a number of municipalities have tried, and failed, to keep sex offenders out, because courts overturned the bans, but it gets more cloudy when it comes to homeowner groups.

“Still, it’s an hysterical response, not based on facts,” she said. . . . 

Wright said residency restrictions — whether in state law or in homeowner association regulations — do nothing to make a community safer. She pointed to research that indicates such rules can exacerbate offender instability and risk.

She noted groups such as the American Law Institute, Ohio Criminal Justice Recodification Committee, and Association for the Treatment and Prevention of Sexual Abuse, have frowned on residency restrictions.

Read the full piece here.

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  1. Tim in WI

    “It get more cloudy when it comes to home owner association..”
    The constitution only provide for 2 jurisdictions: Federal & State. Time to ban HOAs as unconstitutional extra jurisdictional government. This will clear the clouds.

    1. mut

      if an hoa has control, where is the home ownership?

  2. Tim in WI

    I’m sure the old ” It’s ridiculous!” argument will win the people over.

  3. Max Freeman

    If I decide to move or travel anywhere and I have to defend myself for safety reasons, and end up hurting someone. Who is to blame for that blood. Isn’t this another reason the law originally kept records in house rather then leaving it open to lynch mob, pack mentality and vigilantes. The law is supposed to be designed to serve and protect all things. That includes people in or out of prison (even from themselves). Not only serving the pharisees and the Romans, the elect and those who feel better than others. Those who are a risk of being dangerous shouldn’t be out walking the streets. Those who are allowed freedom to be out walking the streets should be just that, Free, to have all freedoms like any other citizen. This whole thing started out as a lynch mob, pack mentality issue right from the start, led and fueled by the news media itself. It is starting to cause way more trouble and instigating mass hysteria in many ways. If it wasn’t for the news, causing a mass hysteria about isolated incidents that ended in death. It would have been handled as a local case. The only time people should be on the look out is when there is a killer on the loose, kidnappings of children and possible sex trafficking hostages as well. This unconstitutional act has got to go away at a federal level. Not just in states that decide to change a few rules. I’m getting old, and very tired of being treated as a criminal 30 years later. The touching was wrong, I admit it. I was drunk and wouldn’t have otherwise. Never have again or will I ever. It shouldn’t have ruined my life the way it did, That was inhumane. Above and beyond punishment.

  4. mut

    bills of pains and penalties are included under the prohibition on bills of attainder.

  5. mut

    i wanna form my own municiapl charter and enforce my own rules, regulations, forfietures and fine$. too.

  6. Melodyjane Courter

    with an open mind, why dont murders, robbers, stalkers, ect. have to register? I mean after all, Id want to know if one of them would do me harm, and I not be safe with them in my neighborhood…..WHY only sex offenders have to register? when your 17/18, not fully grown in many areas, made a bad choice, HAD SEX, didnt rape….shes free making her own chioce as well ,knowing what she did….writes a statement verifying not raped….yet he goes to prison, actually gets raped, beaten, dehumanitized, stop mentally growing, comes out after a 10 plus stint…..totally unprepared for the outside….no parole no probation….can get jobs, BUT NO PLACE TO LIVE, no support groups here in NEW YORK… do I start one here?