City's Mayor, A Registered Sex Offender, Can't Work In City Hall Due to Nearby Youth Center

Thursday , November 22, 2007

POTEET, Texas —
The mayor of this South Texas town is a registered sex offender who can be arrested for going to City Hall, but he still doesn't plan to resign.

Donato is required to stay more than 1,000 feet from places where children congregate, and City Hall is "well within 200 feet" of that limit from the Atascosa Boxing Club and Youth Center, City Attorney Frank Garza said.

"It's a huge issue," Hudson said. "The mayor of the city cannot attend city business because of his status as a registered sex offender." Full Story

[Ed: I predict that we will eventually realize every conceivable and absurd possible consequence of residency and mobility restrictions. This is just the beginning...]

No "Loitering", No "Living" in Lexington, GA

Ordinance would be tougher than one just ruled unconstitutional in Georgia
Robert Kittle, WSPA-TV, Wednesday, Nov 21, 2007

The Town of Lexington is about to propose an ordinance that severely limits where sex offenders could live, even though the Georgia Supreme Court on Wednesday ruled unconstitutional a similar law in that state.

Georgia's law banned sex offenders from living within 1,000 feet of schools, daycare centers, churches, playgrounds, parks and anywhere else children gather. The Lexington, SC proposal, coming up at its town council meeting December 3, would ban sex offenders from living or loitering within 2,500 feet of those places. Full Story [Ed: Hmm... Does this mean that sex offenders can start withholding taxes they pay for public services they can no longer legally utilize?]

Finally, Some Reason To Give Thanks In Georgia

New York Times, November 22, 2007
Georgia Justices Overturn a Curb on Sex Offenders

ATLANTA, Nov. 21 — The Georgia Supreme Court unanimously struck down a state law Wednesday that limited where registered sex offenders could live, ruling that the statute was so restrictive it unconstitutionally deprived the offenders of their property rights.

The law, described when it was adopted in 2006 as the nation’s toughest restriction on sex offenders, prohibited them from living within 1,000 feet of schools, churches or any other place that children might congregate, including more than 150,000 school bus stops in the state. The ban applied even when a school, a church or the like opened in an area where an offender was already living.

“Under the terms of that statute, it is apparent that there is no place in Georgia where a registered sex offender can live without being continually at risk of being ejected,” said the seven-member court’s opinion, written by Presiding Justice Carol W. Hunstein.

The court ruled that the statute violated Fifth Amendment protections against the public taking of private property without compensation. ...

... Mr. Mann said in a telephone interview that the court’s decision brought great relief.

“You live kind of every day wondering if the sheriff’s office is going to come out and tell you that you have three days to move,” Mr. Mann said. “It’s happened to me twice.”

Mr. Mann said he had challenged the law to protect his family, but also because he had felt he was being unfairly punished for the sake of political pandering.

Full Story

Police alert residents to predatory sex offender running bike shop

[Ed: What's Next? He starts to Pay Taxes? Other bicycle shop owners must be delirious. Thank God "Bend Weekly" is playing its part in keeping kids safe!]

"Bend Weekly", Nov 21,2007
Police alert residents to predatory sex offender running bike shop
by Cheryl McDermott

Police alert residents to predatory sex offender running bike shop
Nov 21,2007 00:00 by Cheryl McDermott

The Oregon City Police Department is alerting businesses and residents that a convicted sex offender who preyed on boys and girls aged 9-to-15 has applied for a business license and is currently running a bicycle shop on Main Street.

Harry Alan Garret, 54, was convicted of first-degree sex abuse and third-degree sodomy in 2000, crimes that involved children, both male and female, between 9 and 15, police reported.

According to a news release, Garret was designated a predatory sexual offender by the Oregon State Police Sex Offender Unit, and officers are alerting businesses and residents in the area surrounding the bicycle shop at 724 Main Street.

Garret, a 54-year old white male who is described as 5-feet 5-inches tall weighing 180 pounds, has blue eyes and is balding with light brown hair. He has applied for a business license, but is open for business while the license is under consideration, the release stated.

Quebec says no to provincial sex offender registry

Wednesday, November 21, 2007
CBC News

The Quebec government will not create a public registry of convicted sex offenders in the province because it may spur vigilante justice, the provincial justice minister said.

Opposition party Action Démocratique du Québec presented a petition Wednesday with more than 62,000 signatures demanding a public registry for convicted sex offenders.

Justice Minister Jacques Dupuis was swift to dash hopes of a public registry, citing concerns about vigilantism and the potential of people hunting down offenders after they're released from prison.

"We absolutely know that that was the case in some instances in the United States, where the registry was made public," he said. Full Story

Analysis: Sex offenders often homeless

U.S.A. Today

WASHINGTON, Nov. 19 (UPI) -- Many convicted sex offenders are homeless and living in tents, woods and on the street, a USA Today analysis published Monday said.

In Boston, nearly two-thirds of 136 high-risk sex offenders are homeless, while in New York City, more than 100 reported living at shelters, the report said.

Sex offenders, who are required to register with police, have difficulty finding a landlord who will rent to them and often are prevented by law from living near children. Those factors increase homelessness and make sex offenders difficult to track.

In its investigation, USA Today found at least a dozen states list hundreds of sex offenders as homeless, including California which registered 2,716 as "transient." Arkansas, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois and Maine were among the states where the number of transient sex offenders was rising.

Laura Rogers, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Justice Department told the newspaper that homeless sex offenders aren't necessarily more dangerous than those with housing.

"The people you need to be worried about most are the ones who aren't registering at all," Rogers said.



Saginaw Texas Limits Sex Offenders To Living In 1 Of 10 Houses

Saginaw shows no neighborly feelings for sex offenders
By BUD KENNEDY
Star-Telegram staff writer

Saginaw is scared. So scared, apparently, that the City Council has done something foolish -- and maybe expensive. The council voted two weeks ago to approve a map that effectively zones two neighborhoods where convicted sex offenders can move into the city -- and nowhere else.
More precisely, the council created giant "child safety zones" across nearly the entire city of 18,500 people. The zones force sex offenders into about 100 houses on the north or southeast edges of town.
That's not all.
Saginaw also did something else almost unheard of. The city told convicted sex offenders that even if they pick one of those 100 houses, they can't move within 500 feet of where another sex offender lives.
In other words, the way I read the map, Saginaw has basically banished sex offenders from all but about 10 houses. That means that Saginaw will be diverting sex offenders to other cities and into rural Tarrant and Wise counties, which don't have the same power. Full Story