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Removal of Persky will make things worse, not better

By Chandra Bozelko . . . Harassment and assault of women is a serious problem and we need to correct our culture to eliminate it. But the recall in Santa Clara County, California, of Aaron Persky, the judge who sentenced Brock Turner, isn’t the way to change things. The Brock Turner debacle raised controversy in 2016 when the former Stanford student,…

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Barbaric consequences to “show me yours and I’ll show you mine” in a digital world

By Sandy. . . Imagine being fourteen years old today, in a world where technology is changing the rules faster than they are being written. John Grasso, a criminal defense attorney and a former police officer, has captured that situation with the brilliant and apt metaphor of stepping into quicksand. You don’t know it’s there until you are in it,…

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The Complexities of Criminal Sentencing

By Andy S. . . . http://www.registrymatters.co/podcast-player/131/length-of-sentences.mp3 Larry and Andy discuss various strategies that prosecutors use in determining sentences. Is there a difference between Federal prosecution and state level prosecution?                                 Do prosecutors try to throw the book at you or are they empathetic? What are…

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Sticks, stones break bones, but names destroy

By Steve Yoder . . . In May, the AP Stylebook changed its guidelines for how reporters should refer to people with substance abuse problems. “Avoid words like alcoholic, addict, user and abuser unless they are in quotations or names of organizations,” says the 2017 version. For those with addictions, that change won’t just shift how they’re portrayed but how they’re…

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S.O. policies driven by public misperceptions, not fact

By Lonnie Burton…. Public opinion toward crime is complex. Research shows that Americans strongly favor punitive measures to address criminal behavior while also demanding the rehabilitation and treatment of offenders. When it comes to sex offenses, it gets even more complicated. A 2015 study authored by Christina Mancini, an Assistant Professor at Virginia Commonwealth University, and Kristen Budd of MiamiUniversity…

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Judicial courage in the face of Colorado’s Lifetime Act

Susan Walker . . . As the mother of a son convicted of sexual assault and sentenced under Colorado’s 1998 Lifetime Act, it is clear to me why Boulder District Judge Patrick Butler chose two years of jail with work release and 20 years’ probation instead of prison for Austin James Wilkerson. Wilkerson, a former University of Colorado student, was…

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Texas registry gets an “F”

By Eric Dexheimer…..   Mark Lay had been a registered sex offender for more than five years before he heard there might be a way to erase his name from the public Texas list. Convicted in 2008 of a single count of possessing child pornography, he was released early from a two-year sentence, classified by the state as a low-risk…

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No evidence registries increase public safety

By Noah Berlatsky . . . “He is a lifetime sex registrant. That doesn’t expire. Just like what he did to me doesn’t expire, doesn’t just go away after a set number of years.” In a statement released to Buzzfeed, the victim of rapist Brock Turner found a small sliver of justice in the fact that Turner, a former Stanford…

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Sexophrenia: moral mania and mass hysteria

By Norm Pattis . . . I’m not hopping on the bandwagon circling the Santa Clara County, California, courthouse. Don’t add my name to the million-plus names of those calling for the scalp of Superior Court Judge Aaron Persky. Far from a goat, Judge Persky is a hero. Would that there were more judges like him. Judge Persky presided over…

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