California has lost track of 33,296 sex offenders, or 44 percent of the 76,350 who registered with the state at least once, the Associated Press reported on Tuesday. California requires rapists and child molesters to register with law enforcement each year and the information is included in the Meganís law database. The 1996 law is named after Megan Kanka, a 7 year-old New Jersey girl who was raped and killed by a known child molester who had moved in across the street. When presented with the APís findings, California Attorney General Bill Lockyer said, ďOur system is inadequate, woefully inadequate. It can only be improved by putting money into the local law enforcement agencies. Itís a matter of resources.Ē
Despite the AP report, local police officials in California contend that Meganís law is working, the Los Angeles Times reported today. Although the state has lost track of almost half of the sex offenders in the state, they argue that the citiesí police departments are keeping track of convicted sex offenders. AP acknowledged in their report that cities like Los Angeles and San Jose are well-funded and successfully keep track of sex offenders in their jurisdiction, but that other localities are less organized and understaffed.
Laura Ahearn, executive director of Parents for Meganís Law, argues that the problem exists primarily because the law relies on sex offenders to provide their addresses themselves, reported AP. In Washington state, where the failure rate is only 10 percent, the police are required to visit sex offenders each year to confirm their location, rather than relying on convicted offenders to report in and give accurate information. Demonstrating the inadequacies of the California Meganís law, recently arrested Kenneth Eugene Parnell, who is charged with trying to buy a child, was not considered a ďhigh-riskĒ offender under the law despite having been convicted for lewd and lascivious conduct on a child in the 1950s and for kidnapping a child in 1972 and another in 1980, the Contra Costa Times reported.
Media Resources: Associated Press 1/7/03; Los Angeles Times 1/9/03; San Francisco Chronicle 1/9/03; Contra Costa Times 1/7/03
2/27/2015 This Bipartisan Bill Will Hold Colleges Accountable for Ending Campus Sexual Assault - A bipartisan bill aimed at holding colleges and universities accountable for rape and sexual assault cases was introduced in Congress yesterday, spearheaded by Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY).
Some of the Campus Accountability and Safety Act's key key provisions include a requirement of confidential reporting systems on colleges and universities, minimum training requirements for campus personnel, and stricter penalties for schools found to be in violation of Title IX or the Clery Act. . . .
2/26/2015 If This Bill Passes Federal Law Will Add Consent to Sex Ed Curriculums - Right now, federal law does not require health or sex education to include sexual assault prevention - but that could change with a new bill introduced by Senators Claire McCaskill (D-MO) and Tim Kaine (D-VA).
The Teach Safe Relationships Act of 2015, which was introduced earlier this month, would require all public secondary schools in the country to include teaching "safe relationship behavior" in order to help prevent domestic violence and sexual assault. . . .