WA Starts Emergency Monitoring Of Dangerous Sex Offenders


Washington state will start a $400,000 emergency program to monitor 50 of the state’s most dangerous sex offenders electronically by the middle of next year, reports the Seattle Times. The move was prompted by the July kidnapping and slaying of 12-year-old Zina Linnik Gov. Christine Gregoire said her emergency budget will fund the monitoring, which includes global positioning system (GPS) tracking. House Republicans had called for Gregoire to hold a special session to toughen penalties for sex offenders and increase electronic monitoring. The governor said her action is “more cost-effective than calling the Legislature in for 30 days.”

The program will start with five high-risk sex offenders this week, and is projected to cover 50 by the middle of next year and to 150 by the middle of 2009. The man accused of abducting and killing Linnik, Terapon Adhahn, would not have been covered by the new electronic monitoring program if it had been in effect at the time of the crime because he was classified as a Level 1 sex offender – those least likely to reoffend. The new program covers only Level 3 offenders, who are considered the most dangerous. “It’s not going to stop offenders from reoffending, but it will help us in holding these folks accountable,” said Mountlake Terrace Police Chief Scott Smith. “For a certain population, they will hopefully curb their behavior, because they are in fact going to be monitored.”

Link: http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/localnews/2003906581_predators27m.html

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