Monday, June 14, 2004

What do you do with a kid like this?

A sex offender I happen to know is about to go to jail shortly for a parole violation. He failed to register with local authorities as a sexual predator when he changed his address. (Changing addresses in this case meant spending a few nights at his latest bimbette's place).

Alright, he violated the law. New Jersey's Megan's Law has specific mandates for active community notification which ensures that the community will be made aware of the presence of convicted sex offenders posing a risk to public safety. The actual case occurred elsewhere, but the issue is the same. What could be wrong with busting the guy?

I guess it depends on what you call a "convicted sex offender posing a risk to public safety". The perp's original offense was for having sex with a 13 year old girl. He was 18 or so at the time.

All of you who have ever had sex with a 13 year old girl, regardless of your own age at the time, please turn yourselves in immediately. You too can have your picture and address posted on the Internet labeled as a sexual predator for the rest of your life. Gulp....I'm guessing that that would catch more men than you think.

He broke the law for sure. And that there's plenty of evidence that this was rape only in the statutory sense is irrelevant - her Lewinskian prose was not admissible. He knew better, or certainly should have. But is this the kind of sex offense Megan's Law was intended to address?

To my knowledge this kid (he's 21 now) is not violent and doesn't have any weapons. In fact, if you knew him only casually you wouldn't suspect a thing - you might even think he was bright and glib and thus had potential. When he showed up for school and actually paid attention he did well, but he could never be as smart as he thinks he is. Nowadays he's learning about PCs, but his brashness and perpetual attraction to lowlives has already cost him a few new Windows reinstallations via viruses et al.

Can he be rehabilitated? Hmm - while he was locked up prior to his probation he did get his GED. But this was out of boredom rather than any change of heart IMO. He's the kind that used to get taken for a ride by persons unknown, beaten senseless and told to straighten up or get to hell out of town. It's ugly, but I have to call them like I see them.

I could be wrong. But one thing is for sure - the fact that he has a felony on his record and is labeled in perpetuity as a sex offender is not going to make it easier.

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