Due to a bill that California governor Jerry Brown will most likely sign, California will soon be removing thousands of people from their state sex offender list, including convicted rapists and pedophiles.
California is currently one of the four states in the nation that requires lifetime registry on the sex offender list, along with Alabama, South Carolina, and Florida. Offenders are required to register annually as sex offenders for the entirety of their lifetimes, something that ensures they are not living or working in an area that a sex offender has no business living or working.
However, according to the LA Times, some politicians (I’ll give you one guess what party they belong to!) want to change the lifetime registration requirement for sex offenders–letting many heinous criminals off the list.
“The state’s sex offender registry has lost significant value over time because it contains so many low-risk offenders with decades-old offenses,” says Los Angeles County Dist. Atty. Jackie Lacey, one of the bill’s biggest proponents. “Our bill will improve public safety by creating a tiered system that will allow investigators to focus on those offenders who pose the greatest risk.”
Other supporters include the ACLU of California (shocker) and an LA police LGBT group (again, shocker).
The bill would use a tiered system so that offenders would be removed after a certain period of time depending on their offense. While those proposing the bill claim the purpose is to remove non-violent sex offenders from the list, not only are many supposedly “non-violent” sex crimes still absolutely deplorable, such as possession of child pornography or inappropriately touching children, the second tier actually includes violent offenders.
The tiers work like this:
The first tier of sex offenders would be removed from the registry after a period of 10 years. These would be those who were convicted for things like misdemeanor indecent exposure, felony possession of child pornography with intent to distribute (castration sounds more appropriate for this offense!!) and misdemeanor sexual battery.
The second tier of sex offenders would be removed from the registry after 20 years and would include such offenses as RAPE, forcible sodomy, and lewd and lascivious conduct with a child under 14.
The third tier of sex offenders, those who would still be required to register for life, would be those convicted of repeat felony child molestation, repeat violent sexual crimes, kidnapping with the intent to commit sexual crimes, and those the court sees as “sexually violent predators.”
This is absolutely outrageous. First of all, those in the first tier are absolutely the kind of criminals that should be on the radar of law enforcement for life. Those who possess child pornography with the intent to sell it have absolutely no business enjoying the personal freedom that they willingly surrender by committing such a disgusting crime.
As for the second tier, I have no idea why these politicians think this bill is only beneficial to non-violent sexual offenders, rape and forcible sodomy are some of the most despicable, violent things you can do to another human being! I would agree rapists shouldn’t be on a sex registry for life–they should be in prison for life or executed.
It is absolutely the same for child molesters, also in the second tier. They have no business being released from prison in the first place!
As for the third tier…the real crime is that people who have been convicted of these heinous crimes are really getting out of prison in their lifetimes, or even being allowed to live. These are despicable acts deserving of death.
The mother of a 5-year-old victim of one of those third-tier crimes is Erin Runnion, the founder of the Joyful Child Foundation, an advocacy group for victims of sex crimes. She founded the group after her daughter was kidnapped, sexually abused, and murdered.
“Californians should be able to find out if someone they met is a convicted sex offender before leaving a child in their care, or going with them on a date, or agreeing to tutor them, etc.,” Runnion said in an email to the LA Times.
Republican representatives in California as well as a few Democrats oppose this bill, and understandably so.
While it is certainly understandable that there will be some on the lifetime sex registry who committed acts that are most likely sinful, but not necessarily violent, such as sex in a public place or an 18-year-old having sex with a 17-year-old, which is illegal in the state of California.
But this bill will not be easing restrictions on these people–it will be letting thousands of violent sex offenders go unnoticed in public when they should have been punished far more severely in the first place.
We live in a desperately immoral time and some days, all we can do is hold fast to the promises of God’s perfect justice.
“God will bring into judgment both the righteous and the wicked, for there will be a time for every activity, a time to judge every deed.” Ecclesiastes 3:17