CO Revising Sex Offender Law That Critics Say Goes Too Far

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Colorado’s sex offenders maintain that the state treats them as pariahs, closely monitoring where they live, what they look at, who they talk to and what they discuss. One claimed he was warned against keeping a crucifix because it displayed partial nudity. Another, convicted of groping a woman, said he had to write down his thoughts every time he saw a school bus. The idea was to protect children, but the resulting system that cut off offenders from their own families has been struck down in federal court. That leaves Colorado to create a new sex-offender treatment and management system that defense lawyers say is long overdue but prosecutors worry will put children at risk, the Denver Post reports.

Supporters of the changes point to lives disrupted by what they call an outdated and overreaching system. David Zayatz, 39, said authorities threatened to separate him from his family after he was arrested on a parole violation. An indecent-exposure charge when he was 15 years old — for “mooning some people,” Zayatz said, put him on Colorado’s radar as a sex offender. “I mooned someone when I was 15. How many kids do stupid stuff like that every day? And here I am turning 40 years old and still dealing with it,” he said. Critics argue that Colorado has for too long treated a broad cross section of parolees and probationers as posing the same risks to children when in reality they differ greatly. Those separated from their children include a 35-year-old man who sent sexually explicit e-mails to fellow college students and a man who as a 15-year-old had unlawful sexual contact with a 14-year-old girl. “There has been a historical mythology that there is this one thing called a sex offender, and a lot of hysteria has been around a certain imagined stranger-profile predator,” said Laurie Kepros of the state public defender.’s office. “The real cases are sometimes very immature people doing things that are technically in violation of statute but aren’t even necessarily abnormal behaviors.”

 

 

2 thoughts on “CO Revising Sex Offender Law That Critics Say Goes Too Far

  1. With regards to the new sex offender guidelines, it is the cruelest of actions to deny ANY sex offender who DOES NOT have a history of molesting his or her own children the GOD-GIVEN RIGHT to be a parent to the child and to be involved with every aspect of their child’s life. Anyone who thinks it’s ok to break up a tight-knit family over an irrational fear of what MIGHT happen is sicker in the mind than any sex offender could ever possibly be. You’re not only torturing the offender, but also an innocent child that only knows they love and want their mom or dad. Shame on all who oppose parental rights for sex offenders who have never harmed a hair on their child’s head.

    • If you are going to invoke God in this argument you might want to check and see what scripture says about a person, much less a sex offender, who harms children. In short, they wouldn’t be around to raise their own children. Scripture states that anyone who would harm a child (the least of these) will wish they were dead. The right to parent is not sacrosanct. Parents lose custody over their children all of the time for irresponsible behavior. Why in the world would someone who sees fit to sexually violate another person’s child be regarded as possessing the appropriate values, wisdom, and morals to raise anyone. What a horrible realization for that child when they grow up. What manner of shame will they be subjected to because of their association with that person? They might wind up living with the fear of becoming the same. Perhaps they will be taught the same distorted but subtle rationalizations that allowed the sex offender to violate someone else’s child. Just because you can have kids doesn’t mean you should.

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