f/k/a archives . . . real opinions & real haiku

August 9, 2007

not one repeat child-molesting stranger: Strock

Filed under: q.s. quickies — David Giacalone @ 9:26 am

StrockCarl “Not a single case. So the panic is even more crackpot than I thought, or more cynical.” Carl Strock, Daily Gazette, Aug. 9, 2007.

On the night the Schenectady County Legislature passed its infamous sex offender residency/eviction laws (see our June 13th post PanderPols Vote to Evict Sex Offenders), County Legislator Joseph Suhrada complained that our children could have been protected over the past two years from sex-predator neighbors, if his colleagues had only passed such residency restrictions when he first proposed them in 2005. As we left that public meeting, I mentioned to Daily Gazette columnist Carl Strock that we should check out just how many instances of registered sex offenders molesting children we’ve had here in Schenectady County since the Legislature wisely chose not to pass Suhrada’s ban. And, I ventured a guess based on my recollection of local news accounts: Not one. Well, this morning, Carl’s Gazette column has the answers. It is called “Schenectady’s imaginary predators” (Aug. 9, 2007) and is worth reading in its entirety. With no further commentary, let me quote the most salient parts:

“. . . [H]ere’s what I learned from no less an authority than Schenectady County District Attorney Robert Carney … In the past two years the district attorney’s office has processed 113 sex crime defendants and of those a mere six were registered sex offenders repeating their crimes. Further, of those six repeaters, only two were charged with offenses against children, and of those two, neither was accused as a stranger. They were both some kind of family members or acquaintances.”

“In other words in the past two years there has not been a single case of what the legislators (and many others) want us to believe is a trememdous social problem — serial ‘predators’ skulking around schools and playgrounds waiting to snatch away our innocent children for their perverted gratification.”

family vacation
in the museum corner
uncle’s hard kisses

me in one hand
a belt in the other
dad sings a lullaby

………………………. by roberta beary you!
“family vacation” – frogpond XXVII
“me in one hand” – Taboo Haiku

p.s. Rev. C. David Hess of theparson.net has sent along another reality check for those who believe that running sex offenders out of a community is the best way to protect our children. David points to this finding from a recent Minnesota study:

“…even when offenders established direct contact with victims, they were unlikely to do so close to where they lived. This may be due mostly to the fact that offenders are more likely to be recognized within their own neighborhoods. As a result, when direct contact offenders look for a victim, they are more likely to go to an area relatively close to home (i.e. within 20 miles of their residence), but still far enough away (i.e. more than one mile) to decrease the chances of being recognized.” (Residential Proximity & Sex Offense Recidivism in Minnesota, April 2007, Minnesota Department of Corrections, p. 2)

update (Aug. 10, 2007): See our update to Tuesday’s posting, describing an article in today’s Schenectady Daily Gazette, “Towns mull initiative on offender issues,” which notes that town supervisors are unhappy with proposed changes to the current law.  Also, thanks to Corey Yung at the Sex Crimes weblog, for continuing to cover these issues in a new post, “What’s the matter with Schenectady?” (Aug. 9, 2007).

1 Comment

  1. We dont even know what a ‘sex offender’ is, or what is the plumb line. Folks have fallen off their rockers. Does anyone know what is offensive anymore???

    Comment by Senders — October 22, 2007 @ 7:59 am

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