CrimProf Blog

Editor: Kevin Cole
Univ. of San Diego School of Law

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Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Plunging into Vacant Orifices in Vacant Sex Shop

(Australia). An Aussie man has been arrested for repeatedly breaking and entering into an adult shop to have sex with a blow up doll. Her name is Jungle Jane and he didn't even stay to cuddle her (or so it appears). Instead, he abandoned her in an alley behind the store where his DNA was collected from the doll. Story here. UPDATE: Jungle Jane didn't make any incriminating statements against the suspect but she reportedly had a shocked look on her face.

January 21, 2009 in International, Miscellaneous, Sex | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (5)

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Tenth Circuit's Construction Narrows Federal Sex Offender Registry Law

The provision of the federal Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act that makes it a crime to travel interstate and fail to register as a sex offender does not apply to someone whose travel was complete before the law went into effect, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit held Nov. 5 (United States v. Husted, 10th Cir., No. 08-6010, 11/5/08).

Congress's use of the present tense “travels” in 18 U.S.C. § 2250(a)(2)(B) plainly indicates that it meant to reach only those who moved between states following the statute's enactment, the court decided.

The statute provides that a person who is a convicted sex offender and “travels in interstate or foreign commerce … and knowingly fails to register” at his destination as required by the act is subject to imprisonment for up to 10 years.

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November 18, 2008 in Criminal Justice Policy, Criminal Law, Sex | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, November 6, 2008

No Federal Charges for Eliot Spitzer

Large_eliotFormer Gov. Eliot Spitzer will not be charged with any crime for his patronage of a prostitution ring, federal prosecutors announced on Thursday.

The announcement was made by the office of Michael J. Garcia, the United States attorney in Manhattan. Mr. Spitzer announced his resignation in March two days after The New York Times reported his involvement in a high-priced prostitution ring, the Emperors Club V.I.P.

Mr. Garcia said in a statement that his office had found no evidence that Mr. Spitzer had used public money or campaign funds to pay for his encounters with prostitutes.

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November 6, 2008 in Criminal Law, DOJ News, Political News, Sex | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, October 23, 2008

San Francisco to Vote on Decriminalization of Prostitution

In this live-and-let-live town, where medical marijuana clubs do business next to grocery stores and an annual fair celebrates sadomasochism, prostitutes could soon walk the streets without fear of arrest.

San Francisco would become the first major U.S. city to decriminalize prostitution if voters next month approve Proposition K — a measure that forbids local authorities from investigating, arresting or prosecuting anyone for selling sex.

The ballot question technically would not legalize prostitution since state law still prohibits it, but the measure would eliminate the power of local law enforcement officials to go after prostitutes.

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October 23, 2008 in Criminal Justice Policy, Criminal Law, Law Enforcement, Sex | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Ninth Circuit Rules Statutory Rape in CA not Categorically a Deportable Offense

The full 9th Circuit ruled that statutory rape does not necessarily constitute a deportable felony, offering hope for relief to a Mexican immigrant facing deportation for having consensual sex with his 16-year-old girlfriend when he was 20.

The court agreed to review the case of Juan Elias Estrada-Espinoza, who was convicted of statutory rape for having sex with his minor girlfriend. The couple met when Estrada-Espinoza was 20 years old and the girl was 15 or 16, but she allegedly told him she was 18. They began living together in one of their parents' homes, and eventually got their own apartment and had a child together.

Estrada-Espinoza has been jailed under a deportation order since 2005.

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October 21, 2008 in Criminal Law, Sex | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Utah has high reported-rape rate, but most victims silent

Utah's reported-rape rate - already higher than the national average - drastically underestimates the actual incidence of rape, a new report indicates.
    In a 2007 phone survey of more than 1,800 women, nearly 13 percent said they had been forcibly raped in their lifetimes, according to a report released Wednesday by the Utah Commission on Criminal and Juvenile Justice. An additional 16 percent were sexually assaulted in other ways, such as child molestation, drug-facilitated rape and attempted rape.
   

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September 4, 2008 in Sex | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Sex crime registry may add juveniles

Tennessee's failure to include sex offenses by juveniles on its public sex offender registry could start costing the state federal money in 2009.

Tennessee Bureau of Investigation spokeswoman Kristin Helm said the agency is going to "wholeheartedly push" to have the legislature change the sex registry law to include offenses by juveniles.

The federal Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act of 2006 includes a 10 percent reduction in federal law enforcement funding to states that fail to comply with the law by July 2009.

The law allows two annual extensions for states that show significant movement toward including juveniles in public sex offender registries.

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August 19, 2008 in Sex | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Eighth Circuit Upholds SORNA

In what appears to be the first federal circuit court ruling addressing the constitutionality of the federal Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit decided July 31 that the provision of the act that makes it a crime to travel interstate and fail to register as a sex offender does not constitute an ex post facto law as applied to those convicted of a sex crime prior to its enactment. Further, the statute does not exceed Congress's power under the commerce clause, the court held (United States v. May, 8th Cir., No. 07-3515, 7/31/08).

Along the way, the court rejected the defendant's statutory argument that SORNA did not apply to him because the interstate travel underlying the charge against him took place before the attorney general issued a directive making the act retroactively applicable.

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August 19, 2008 in Criminal Law, Sex | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Monday, July 28, 2008

Shocking twist to murder, rape

Bilde Hamilton County law enforcement officials knew that David Steffen killed 19-year-old Karen Range in 1982 but he insisted for 26 years he never raped the teen. 

Prosecutors won murder and rape convictions against Steffen to send him to death row – the first Hamilton County inmate to receive a death sentence after it was reinstated in Oh File photos from 1983 Now, authorities have the man they believe responsible for the sexual attack.
Bilde2
A grand jury indicated a former Hamilton County Coroner Office's employee Monday for having sex with the teen’s body in the morgue.

Kenneth Douglas, 55, of Westwood, was arrested Friday for violating his probation for drug trafficking and his DNA matched the DNA in the girl’s body.

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July 28, 2008 in Sex | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Lawmakers look at sex offenders in nursing homes

Ray McDaniel's 18-year-old daughter was raped 10 days after moving into a nursing home — by a registered sex offender who also lived there.

No one was required to tell McDaniel that the 43-year-old sex offender was a resident of the nursing home where his daughter was admitted in 2005 because she is mentally retarded and has schizophrenia. The resident who attacked her pleaded guilty and is serving three years in prison.

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July 27, 2008 in Sex | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Sunday, July 6, 2008

National Sex Offender Guidelines Released

The Justice Department today (June 1, 2008) released the final Sex Offender Registration and Notification ACT (SORNA) Guidelines. These are the guidelines for the Adam Walsh Act's sex offender registration and notification provisions. A copy of the guidelines is here (pdf.)

The Act is officially known as the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act of 2006. The Guidelines are in Title I of the Act, named the Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act (SORNA). The DOJ office that released the guidelines is the Office of Sex Offender Sentencing,
Monitoring, Apprehending, Registering and Tracking (SMART).

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July 6, 2008 in Sex | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Monday, May 19, 2008

Addressing the Harsh Reality of Rape in Prison

The group Human Rights Watch estimates that 22 percent of male inmates in the Unites States have been raped at least once during their incarceration.

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May 19, 2008 in Sex | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Georgia Supreme Court Finally Frees in Consensual Oral Sex Case

From NYTimes.com:-- Georgia's Supreme Court on Friday ordered the release of a young man who has been imprisoned for more than two years for having consensual oral sex with another teenager.

The court ruled 4-3 that Genarlow Wilson 10-year sentence was cruel and unusual punishment.

Wilson's lawyer, B.J. Bernstein, said she expected Wilson would be released Friday afternoon from the Al Burruss Correctional Training Center in Forsyth, Ga.

''His mother is just thrilled. We're all in a little bit of shock,'' Bernstein said.

Wilson, 21, was convicted of aggravated child molestation following a 2003 New Year's Eve party at a Douglas County hotel room where he was videotaped having oral sex with a 15-year-old girl. He was 17 at the time.

Wilson was acquitted of raping another 17-year-old girl at the party.

The 1995 law Wilson violated was changed in 2006 to make oral sex between teens close in age a misdemeanor, similar to the law regarding teen sexual intercourse. But the state Supreme Court later upheld a lower court's ruling which said that the 2006 law could not be applied retroactively.

Rest of Article. . . [Mark Godsey]

October 27, 2007 in Sex | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Sex Offender Restrictions Now Hit Universities

Universities are now jumping on the bandwagon to ban sex offenders from campus housing.  Listen to NPR story here.

October 16, 2007 in Sex | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Federal Prosecutor Caught In Child Drug Sting

From freep.com: A federal prosecutor flew to metro Detroit with a Dora the Explorer doll, hoop earrings and petroleum jelly for a 5-year-old he planned to have sex with, police say.

John David Roy Atchison -- who prosecutes civil and criminal matters as an assistant U.S. attorney in the Northern Florida District -- appeared on the other side of the law Monday in Detroit federal court. Atchison, 53, of Gulf Breeze, Fla., was charged with enticement of a minor using the Internet and knowingly traveling interstate to engage in illicit sex.

According to court documents, during an Internet chat with an undercover officer, Atchison described himself as "very much a family man." He initiated the online chat Aug. 29 with the officer posing as a mother interested in letting men have sex with her children.

During continuous conversations, he expressed a desire to engage in oral, vaginal and anal sex with her fictitious daughter. Money was not part of the discussion.

In the chats, he also suggested he previously had sex with minors.

With eyes cast downward and fiddling with papers, Atchison asked for a court-appointed attorney Monday until he obtains his own. He was ordered to remain in custody, pending a detention hearing at 1 p.m. today. He faces up to 60 years in prison if convicted of the crimes.

Rest of Article. . . [Mark Godsey]

September 18, 2007 in Sex | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Prostitutes Apprehended Thanks to Craigslist.com

From NYTimes.com: Eight women were arrested on prostitution charges in New York, snared in a new sting operation by the Nassau County police that focuses on Craigslist.org, the ubiquitous Web site best known for its employment and for-sale advertisements but which law enforcement officials say is increasingly also used to trade sex for money.

Nassau County has made more than 70 arrests since it began focusing on Craigslist last year, one of numerous crackdowns by vice squads from Hawaii to New Hampshire that have lately been monitoring the Web site closely, sometimes placing decoy ads to catch would-be customers.

“Craigslist has become the high-tech 42nd Street, where much of the solicitation takes place now,” said Richard McGuire, Nassau’s assistant chief of detectives. “Technology has worked its way into every profession, including the oldest.”

Augmenting traditional surveillance of street walkers, massage parlors, brothels and escort services, investigators are now hunching over computer screens to scroll through provocative cyber-ads in search of solicitors.

In July raids, the sheriff of Cook County, Ill., rounded up 43 women working on the streets — and 60 who advertised on Craigslist. In Seattle, a covert police ad on Craigslist in November resulted in the arrests of 71 men, including a bank officer, a construction worker and a surgeon. Rest of Article. . . . [Mark Godsey]

September 5, 2007 in Sex | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Underage Oral Sex Tape: Porn or Public Record?

From latimes.com: A controversy is brewing over distribution of the videotape that shows the young man engaging in oral sex with a 15-year-old girl when he too was underage.

Wilson, 21, was sent to prison for 10 years because of the consensual liaison, something his supporters have called cruel and unusual punishment.

After the 2005 trial, Douglas County Dist. Atty. David McDade released more than 30 copies of the tape to state lawmakers and the media — saying, according to the Associated Press, he was required to do so by Georgia's open-records law.

Snippets of the videotape have been played on television news shows nationwide.

This week, Democratic state Sen. Emanuel Jones — who has called for Wilson's release — asked Georgia Atty. Gen. Thurbert Baker to investigate the tape's release, calling it a "disgrace."

The attorney general has not responded, but Wednesday, U.S. Atty. David E. Nahmias of Atlanta declared the tape "child pornography under federal law."

"Federal laws prohibit the knowing distribution, receipt and possession of child pornography — that is, visual depictions of minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct — under most circumstances," Nahmias said in a written statement. Those laws, he said, "trump any contrary requirement of the state's Open Records Act that may exist."

Nahmias' statement did not mention the Douglas County prosecutor. It said the U.S. attorney's office would "neither confirm nor deny" whether there was a criminal investigation related to the tape's release.

"We further advise anyone in possession of that videotape outside of law enforcement or judicial proceedings to return it to law enforcement or destroy it immediately," the statement said.
Rest of Article. . . [Mark Godsey]

July 12, 2007 in Sex | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (1)

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

10 Years for Consensual Sex is "a Grave Miscarriage of Justice"

From NPR.com: Georgia judge called Genarlow Wilson's 10-year sentence for consensual teen sex "a grave miscarriage of justice" and ordered him released from prison. But the former high school football star and scholar remains behind bars pending a notice of appeal.

Wilson's sentence – along with the explicit details of his case – continues to stir national debate with supporters, including former President Jimmy Carter, who say his sentence was too severe. Listen. . . [Mark Godsey]

June 12, 2007 in Sex | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

OK Turns to Faith To Stop Recidivism

From newsok.com: More than a quarter of Oklahoma criminals released from prison return within three years, but a bill passed out of the House on Tuesday seeks to lower that rate.

However, critics of the bill say it will funnel public money to church organizations running prison programs — a violation, they say, of the U.S. Constitution.

The legislation would encourage faith-based and other volunteer organizations to get involved in prisoners' lives, whether that means helping them find a job upon release or teaching them parenting skills while in prison; $100,000 has been allotted in the fiscal year 2008 budget to help these groups reduce Oklahoma's recidivism rate. Rest of Article. . . [Mark Godsey]

May 23, 2007 in Sex | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Seattle Face a Rise in Sex Offender Case

From seattlepi.com: Though police believe intensive supervision is the surest way to prevent repeat crimes by sex offenders, state Department of Corrections officials have quietly decided to ramp up caseloads for Seattle community corrections officers who oversee the state's largest concentration of high-risk rapists and child molesters.

Daily, these officers visit recently released sex offenders at their homes and workplaces, sometimes spending more than an hour in consultation with each, comparing notes with police and generally monitoring the felons' every move.

Now, they worry, supervision will be cursory, at best.

"In today's world, that's a pretty scary proposition," said Ton Johnson, president of the officers' union.

Johnson might have been thinking of one supervised felon -- a crack-addicted man who called his corrections officer near midnight, sobbing that he'd been living in the bushes of a King County park, planning to rape a little girl. The man had gone so far as to buy a blowup doll, dress it in child's pajamas and practice on it.

Or another client who worked a regular job but occasionally felt he needed to rape somebody. Or another, with a history of violent sex assaults, who lured a woman to a hotel room and, after attempting to rape her, took several bites out of her body.

"The point was to have 25 of these offenders and supervise the heck out of them," said Iris Peterson, a community corrections officer who has spent 15 years working with such felons, all of whom were judged a high risk to reoffend. "They don't just show up at our office once a month and say hi -- these guys take a lot of time, and the concern is that we'll have too many offenders to meaningfully supervise."

In coming months, officials said, Peterson's current caseload of 20 could increase by 50 percent, to 30 offenders.

The move has yet to be formally announced, but Corrections officials said it would be phased in gradually and affect mainly the nine officers working Seattle's high-risk sex offender unit.

"The goal is to bring them into line with similar units elsewhere in the state," said Gary Larson, a spokesman for the agency. "Seattle was the only unit that did not have the caseload levels that would be expected." Rest of Article. . . [Mark Godsey]

May 10, 2007 in Sex | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)