Civil Commitment Laws for Sex Offenders
In the wake of New York's passing a law last week allowing sex offenders to be held in civil confinement after their prison terms are up, the New York Times examines the dubious wisdom of such laws.
Here's a snippet:
only a small fraction of committed offenders have ever completed treatment to the point where they could be released free and clear. Leroy Hendricks, a convicted child molester in Kansas, finished his prison term 13 years ago, but he remains locked up at a cost to taxpayers in that state of $185,000 a year — more than eight times the cost of keeping someone in prison there.
Mr. Hendricks, who is 72 and unsuccessfully challenged his confinement in the Supreme Court, spends most days in a wheelchair or leaning on a cane, because of diabetes, circulation ailments and the effects of a stroke. He may not live long enough to “graduate” from treatment.
As the Times notes, very few will. This is a six page article that examines the flaws and mistaken assumptions in these laws.
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