Here is Part II of an opinion in response to a question posed by a Adoc2be:
What should be done to protect society from dangerous sex offenders?
About today's Guest Author:
MommaFargo describes herself as "a 40-something female police officer and mother workin in a 'big city' in the west..." For several years, she investigated sex crimes for her agency, and has graciously agreed to share some of her insights on sex offenders in the following post.
MommaFargo's blog writing offers plenty of adventure, wisdom, sarcasm, and humor--a combination that makes reading about life in law enforcement so very appealing.
Her home on the Internet can be found at: The Boogie Man is My Friend.
So, here goes...
What To Do With Sex Offenders
My solution? Sex Offender Island.
Think about it.
Over the years, I have debated this question in my mind over and over. I firmly believe they can never be rehabilitated. Professionals will tell you the same. At least the ones that are honest with you and not trying to give you political window dressing and rehab fluff.
Dr. Veronique Valliere is a professional I highly regard as one on top in her field…trying to deal with sex offenders while at the same time, sharing her knowledge to educate the public and law enforcement. If you ever have the opportunity to see her at a conference or share a few beers with her as I did, you will learn a whole library worth of information in just a few hours.
Like her…several sex offenders will tell you the same about themselves…they can’t be rehabilitated. I think, secretly, in their mind…they hope for that. But what tells us the most about whether our systems are successful in this battle…is history and the offender him- or herself.
No one single sex offender hit home more with reality than one I put away for over 20 years. He even said that wasn’t going to be long enough. His criminal career started out in the 80s when he was labeled the mysterious unsub on the west coast…The Columbia River Rapist. Stalking young children, raping and sodomizing them, and then beating them with shovels until almost dead…his MO. I read the case file. Even worse…he told me the story.
Once captured…he blamed police…for planting his DNA inside the children’s vaginal and anal cavities. That was his defense. He was sent to prison. Then he was released, changed his name legally, and moved to my town.
I first met him in 2004. 100 more children later…I took over the case that was long ignored by law enforcement and DFS…he had been reported over and over. No one could prove anything. My DFS partner and I worked his case for several months, traveling the globe.
Finally…arrest and search warrant day. We went toe to toe. Only he had grown wise to the system and was much harder to crack. He changed his MO to avoid capture. He befriended parents. He groomed children. He slipped into church and school functions. He took kids out of town. The violence still inside his mind plagued him…he took out his anger in private…avoiding the injuries to his victims, but instead displaced onto his wife and children. He sodomized his own sons. He beat his wife. He beat his kids.
Incredibly…he succeeded in his activities. He became several personalities. It worked….for over 15 years. That’s how they think. All of them. Some, worse than others.
The criminal mind fascinates me. Often when I get a confession, I delve into what drives them, what’s inside their mind? They are all the same. I could cut and paste their brain activity and thoughts and the next guy would say…“that’s me.”
So how do we fix them? We can’t. They cannot be rehabilitated. What they have told me is they can somewhat function in society with very high supervision and a tough monitoring system.
Another child molester told me what worked best for him was his weekly psychiatrist visits, monthly polygraph tests, ankle bracelet with GPS, and probation and parole home visits, and a work release job away from children. The address registration is just part of that. Then there is the flyer notifications to neighbors. That’s a lot of tax payer dollars. He has not had any reports, complaints, or victims come forward for 10 years.
Now, do I believe he has re-offended? Yes, at least in his mind. Over and over. And inside his mind he is planning the perfect opportunity. If it lands in his lap…so to speak…it will happen. He knows that. He told me he struggles to live everyday without bad thoughts and he can’t. He worries every day he will offend a child. And he will someday if the perfect opportunity comes his way.
Would you want to risk that being your child? Absolutely not.
Sex Offender Island. Sounding better all the time, isn’t it?
I’m a cynical and sarcastic cop…and wishful thinker. But it isn’t something that will happen unless Martial Law takes over the land.
So, in the meantime, while we are all waiting…LOL…the best things I can suggest is a very precise and detailed monitoring system for these offenders and at the same time trying to make them productive enough in society to pay for their own system. First and foremost…innocent people need to prevail over the criminal, for once.
Thanks again to MommaFargo for discussing a difficult subject as today's guest blogger.
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