Saturday, November 22, 2014

Man jailed for a year and a half before Fulton Co Jawja Sheriff's Office realized they screwed up big time


Just how dumb are the sheriff's deputies in Fulton County, GA? Apparently, bad enough to keep a man in jail for a year and a half, convinced they have they the right man. Only problem is they had the wrong man. How can this happen? I guess we will find out after the lawsuit.

PS: If you are wondering why I am posting pictures of car wrecks, it is among the first pictures that came up when I Googled the Fulton Co. Sheriff's Office.

Maybe I need to create a new category, the Keystone Cop of the Year.

http://www.wsbtv.com/news/news/local/man-wrongly-jailed-525-days-under-sex-offenders-na/njCRL/

Posted: 11:12 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 20, 2014
Man wrongly jailed for 525 days under sex offender's name
By Rachel Stockman

ATLANTA — A man was wrongly arrested and held at the Fulton County Jail for 525 days under another man’s name.

Randy Wiggins was mistakenly booked under Randy Williams’ name.

Williams is a convicted child molester who was wanted on a warrant for failing to register as a sex offender.

“The sad part is the system failed him,” said Stephen Strong, his brother-in-law.

Wiggins, who appears to have been wrongly incarcerated, suffers mental issues. The confusion began when he ran into police in June 2012.

“My guy didn’t have his driver’s license on him, so I guess out of convenience as much as anything, (police decided) we’ve got the right guy. It wasn’t the right guy, it was Randy Wiggins, not Randy Williams,” said David Paul Scott, Wiggin’s attorney.

Wiggins’ family says that he was tormented in jail because other inmates wrongly believed he was a sex offender.

“If you want to be blunt about it, he was raped and he was beat,” Strong said.

The family’s filed a federal lawsuit demanding to know how jail officials let this happen and why they didn’t check the system.

“You compare the fingerprints for this guy, are these Randy Williams, especially when this guy is saying, 'I’m not Randy Williams,'” Scott said, adding that a fingerprint check wasn’t done.

“We let them know they had the wrong person. We watched him go into court, still go back out under the wrong name, still labeled as a sex offender,” Strong said.

His family says the mistake was finally discovered when he went to Georgia Regional Hospital for a mental health checkup.

“I’m sure he is not the first and we need implement changes so that he will be the last,” Strong said.

“It’s unclear how the wrong person was arrested for the other Randy’s charges. This matter is under investigation, and there’s nothing more I can share due to the investigation and pending litigation,” said Tracy Flanagan, spokeswoman for the Fulton County Sheriff’s Office.

Monday, November 3, 2014

This is why California's new "Affirmative Defense" law should never have passed

If you are going to co-sponsor a law, you should have at least some idea how the law works. Apparently, California Assemblyperson Bonnie Lowenthal didn't get that memo.

Lowenthal co-authored the much-maligned "Affirmative Consent" law, otherwise known as "Yes Means Yes." When asked how one who is innocent would prove affirmative consent, Lowenthal's response was, "Your guess is as good as mine." So, Lowenthal says lets just pass a law and see how this plays out.

http://www.sgvtribune.com/government-and-politics/20140608/students-question-affirmative-consent-bill-designed-to-combat-sexual-assaults

Students question ‘affirmative consent’ bill designed to combat sexual assaults
By Josh Dulaney, The San Gabriel Valley Tribune
POSTED: 06/08/14, 5:40 PM PDT | UPDATED: ON 06/08/2014 0 COMMENTS

LONG BEACH >> A bill on its way to the state Assembly mandates that California’s public universities adopt a policy requiring college students to obtain ongoing consent throughout a sexual encounter.

Senate Bill 967, introduced by state Sens. Kevin de Leon, D-Los Angeles, and Hannah-Beth Jackson, D-Santa Barbara, requires Cal State University, the University of California and community college districts to adopt campus anti-sexual violence policies that include an affirmative consent standard.

The bill, which was co-authored by Assemblywoman Bonnie Lowenthal, D-Long Beach, passed the state Senate 27-9 on May 29 and was moved to the Assembly.

“I strongly believe that we need to change the way we look at sexual assault and how we talk about it,” said Lowenthal, who chairs the state Legislative Women’s Caucus, with Jackson as vice chair. “In the past, there’s been legislation requiring campuses to disclose crimes on campus and establish victims’ rights, but all across the state, whether it’s private colleges or public universities, campuses have been failing to prevent assaults and protect victims, so I believe our students deserve better.”

SB 967 requires campuses to adopt the affirmative consent standard when determining whether consent was given.

The bill defines affirmative consent as “an affirmative, unambiguous and conscious decision by each participant to engage in mutually agreed-upon sexual activity.” It adds that consent must be ongoing throughout a sexual encounter and can be revoked at any time, and the existence of a dating relationship between the people involved, or their past sexual relations with one another, can’t be assumed to be an indicator of consent.

A pair of friends at Cal State Long Beach said the bill seemed well-intentioned, but questioned how practical it is when it comes to ensuring consent throughout sex with their partners.

“I feel like their hearts are in the right place, but the implementation is a little too excessive,” said Henry Mu, a 24-year-old biology major. “Are there guidelines? Are we supposed to check every five minutes?”

The remark drew laughter from his friend and fellow 49er, Sue Tang.

“If you were to do that, it would definitely kill the vibe,” said Tang, 27.

Lowenthal said affirmative consent means an individual “must say ‘yes,’” and “if an individual says nothing, that doesn’t imply consent.”

The UC system in February, when SB 967 was introduced, adopted a similar policy, also defining consent as “an affirmative, unambiguous and conscious decision by each participant to engage in mutually agreed-upon sexual activity.”

At the 23-campus CSU system, “the concept of affirmative consent suggested by the bill is in line with our own system-wide policy, and the CSU has taken a position of support on SB 967,” said CSU Spokesman Mike Uhlenkamp in an email.

1 IN 5 WOMEN AFFECTED

SB 967 MOVED TO THE ASSEMBLY A MONTH AFTER A REPORT RELEASED BY THE WHITE HOUSE TASK FORCE TO PROTECT STUDENTS FROM SEXUAL ASSAULT CITED AN OFTEN-REPEATED STATISTIC THAT ONE IN FIVE WOMEN AT COLLEGE HAS BEEN THE VICTIM OF SEXUAL ASSAULT.

Shortly after the report, the federal Department of Education released a list of 55 colleges and universities that were under investigation for allegedly mishandling sexual assault complaints. The list included Occidental College, UC Berkeley and the University of Southern California.

Before the floor vote on SB 967, de Leon urges lawmakers to address the “profound problem” by approving the bill and promoting preventative programming that empowers survivors. De Leon said the “vast majority” of campuses have no consistent program to deal with young women who are traumatized by sexual assault and need services, adding that in some cases, the alleged perpetrator is allowed in the same classes as their victim.

“Twenty percent of young women on a college campus, whether it’s a UC, a Cal State or private independent college, will be sexually assaulted in some form, way or shape,” de Leon said. “We need to have a cultural shift across institutions of higher education to take these crimes very seriously.”

Supporters of the bill, which include the California Coalition Against Sexual Assault and the UC Student Association, say SB 967 is needed because sexual assault on campuses is a gray area that needs to be better defined.

“The general discussion around this is that consent needs to be something that is not in question,” said Kareem Aref, president of the UC Student Association and a student at UC Riverside. “If there’s a point where it’s in question, then you’re doing something wrong. If a woman or a man is not consenting, or if it’s blurry, that they’re not consenting, something’s wrong. It needs to be very clear.”

STATISTIC CHALLENGED

Critics of SB 967 say the “one-in-five” women statistic is dubious, and is used by legislators and universities to create a climate of fear on campus that ignores the rights of the accused.

Samantha Harris, director of policy research at the Philadelphia-based nonprofit Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, said the statistic comes from a 2007 federally funded Campus Sexual Assault Study using broad definitions of sexual violence to inflate the prevalence of the problem.

“Depending on their answers, they were classified as victims, regardless of whether they had identified themselves as victims,” Harris said. “If somebody replied as having sex when drunk then they would be classified as a victim. Sexual assault on campus is a serious issue, but you have to get those numbers right.”

Harris said for too long there has been a lack of due process for the accused in college judicial systems, which, under Title IX, are required to investigate student claims of sexual assault or risk being accused of creating a hostile learning environment under federal civil rights laws.

Other critics of SB 967 say the proposed law is too vague and doesn’t represent consensual sexual interaction in the real world.

“To me, this bill turns most people into sexual assaulters,” said Hans Bader, senior attorney for the Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit Competitive Enterprise Institute.

Bader, who wrote against the bill at www.legalinsurrection.com, said many campuses already broadly define sexual activity, and consent is often a nonverbal cue, with either partner being able to stop the activity at any time. He wondered if romantic partners would need to ask each other’s permission for a kiss or hug.

Bader also said he was concerned about false accusations.

“If someone can be nasty enough to rape, can someone be nasty enough to lie and say (the victim) verbally consented?” Bader said. “Are they going to pass a law saying don’t lie?”

When asked how an innocent person is to prove he or she indeed received consent, Lowenthal said, “Your guess is as good as mine. I think it’s a legal issue. Like any legal issue, that goes to court.”

Friday, October 3, 2014

Chicgo PD Detective John J. Escalante claims Apple phones will be "pedophile phones" after Apple blocks LE from hacking newer phones

I'm not a big fan of Apple and their overpriced products. I do use Google products, like this blog. However, my phone is a Nokia running Windows, and yes, I like my Windows phone and I don't want an Apple or Google phone. However, there is something Apple and Google are doing that I hope Microsoft (and other companies, for that matter) will do-- cop-blocking encryption for their phone-related products. I don't have anything to hide, but I don't need the NSA collecting my pictures of crap I'm selling on eBay and CL (which is pretty much all I have on my phone). 

At first glance, it seems this is unrelated to sex offenders, until you see the punchline by FBI Director James Comey. What is it with the FBI, anyways? First Louis Freeh, now this schmuck. For longtime followers of this blog, we know anyone who uses sex offenders as a tool to pimp an idea or a product is Shiitake-worthy. But it is "Detective" John J. Escalante of the Chicago PD that steals the show with the dumbest quote of the article. This guy is as good a detective as Inspector Gadget. Wowsers!


FBI Director James B. Comey sharply criticized Apple and Google on Thursday for developing forms of smartphone encryption so secure that law enforcement officials cannot easily gain access to information stored on the devices — even when they have valid search warrants.

His comments were the most forceful yet from a top government official but echo a chorus of denunciation from law enforcement officials nationwide. Police have said that the ability to search photos, messages and Web histories on smartphones is essential to solving a range of serious crimes, including murder, child pornography and attempted terrorist attacks.

“There will come a day when it will matter a great deal to the lives of people . . . that we will be able to gain access” to such devices, Comey told reporters in a briefing. “I want to have that conversation [with companies responsible] before that day comes.”

Comey added that FBI officials already have made initial contact with the two companies, which announced their new smartphone encryption initiatives last week. He said he could not understand why companies would “market something expressly to allow people to place themselves beyond the law.”

Comey’s remarks followed news last week that Apple’s latest mobile operating system, iOS 8, is so thoroughly encrypted that the company is unable to unlock iPhones or iPads for police. Google, meanwhile, is moving to an automatic form of encryption for its newest version of Android operating system that the company also will not be able to unlock, though it will take longer for that new feature to reach most consumers.

Both companies declined to comment on Comey’s remarks. Apple has said that its new encryption is not intended to specifically hinder law enforcement but to improve device security against any potential intruder....

Not all of the high-tech tools favored by police are in peril. They can still seek records of calls or texts from cellular carriers, eavesdrop on conversations and, based on the cell towers used, determine the general locations of suspects. Police can seek data backed up on remote cloud services, which increasingly keep copies of the data collected by smartphones. And the most sophisticated law enforcement agencies can deliver malicious software to phones capable of making them spy on users.

Yet the devices themselves are gradually moving beyond the reach of police in a range of circumstances, prompting ire from investigators. Frustration is running particularly high at Apple, which made the first announcement about new encryption and is moving much more swiftly than Google to get it into the hands of consumers.

John J. Escalante
“Apple will become the phone of choice for the pedophile,” said John J. Escalante, chief of detectives for Chicago’s police department. “The average pedophile at this point is probably thinking, I’ve got to get an Apple phone.”

The rising use of encryption is already taking a toll on the ability of law enforcement officials to collect evidence from smartphones. Apple in particular has been introducing tough new security measures for more than two years that have made it difficult for police armed with cracking software to break in. The new encryption is significantly tougher, experts say.

“There are some things you can do. There are some things the NSA can do. For the average mortal, I’d say they’re probably out of luck,” said Jonathan Zdziarski, a forensics researcher based in New Hampshire.

Los Angeles police Detective Brian Collins, who does forensics analysis for anti-gang and narcotics investigations, says he works on about 30 smartphones a month. And while he still can successfully crack into most of them, the percentage has been gradually shrinking — a trend he fears will only accelerate.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Lame (Oregon) Duck: Feminist professor Carol (un-)Stabile on feeling left out in the cold

I am a fan of Oregon-- not just the state, but also the University of Oregon. I'm a Duck fan. They're fun to watch. I even have a black Oregon Ducks Jersey sitting in my closet, waiting to be worn on Saturday. However, after seeing KATU's latest sex offender story (surprise, its not Shiitake-regular Anna Canzano, she's on maternity leave, of all things) makes me question the standards of at least one professor there.

I shudder to think who Carol would have prepared for such a discussion about campus assault. I know UO's mascot is a duck, but it seems to me "Dr. Stabile" is the real quack at the UO. (By the way, Carol is one of the founders of the Feminazi website "Fembot." Gag me.)

http://www.katu.com/news/investigators/UO-hired-convicted-sex-offender-to-talk-sexual-assault-awareness-to-athletes-277536142.html

EUGENE, Ore. – KATU’s On Your Side Investigators have learned a convicted sex offender was hired by the University of Oregon to talk to athletes about sexual assault.

A contract obtained by KATU says Adam Ritz was paid $4,000 to give the football team alcohol and sexual assault awareness training.

Ritz was convicted of sexual battery 10 years ago after a woman who babysat his kids accused him of sexual assault. He lost his job as a radio DJ in Indiana but went on to give talks about how to stay out of trouble at universities throughout the country. He’s also spoken to NFL teams. In the talks, he does bring up his conviction.

UO Professor Carol Stabile was outraged when she recently learned the school hired Ritz in May of 2013.

Stabile is a co-chair of the Faculty Senate Task Force to Address Sexual Violence and Survivor Support, which formed last spring after three UO basketball players were accused of sexual assault.

"The message he sends is that this can happen to anyone,” Stabile said, “and I simply don't believe that the particular crime he was convicted of can happen to anyone."

Carole even ranted about this on her own blog:

Athletics at UO, as elsewhere, is pretty much a closed system. Efforts by people who know a thing or two about sexual assault prevention and sexual violence to provide educational efforts have long been met with a defensive wall of silence. Athletics departments provide training to athletes, advocates around the country have been told, and they know better than anyone else how to reach student-athletes.

I think we all know better than to believe that at this point, especially in light of investigative reporting on sexual assault in college football in particular, like the New York Times‘ Walt Bogdanich‘s coverage of sexual assault at Florida State University.

Athletics departments and Greeks around the country made poor decisions in bringing a sex offender and media personality to campus whose only credential (aside from his ability to work the media) was his crime (there are plenty of testimonials from football players on his website, but it’s not clear how that translates into effective educational content).

We need to start demanding more information about how education about sexual violence is being conducted within campus subcultures that are most at risk like football, basketball, Greek systems, band, and debate, to just name a few.

We’re universities, for heaven’s sake, where we have some of the brightest minds in the country working on and researching these very issues. Why not bring some of them in to talk to students in at risk subcultures rather than a sex offender turned campus lecture circuit speaker whose main argument is that raping a baby sitter can happen to anyone?

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Arizona's "Revenge Porn" bill apparently applies to far more than actual revenge porn

Don't get me wrong, I'm all for bans on so-called "revenge porn." I even spared the internet some potentially embarrassing photos I took with my ex-wife after our breakup. (You should all be thankful for that.) But you would think that someone, somewhere in that 90-person legislative body (91 if you count that idiot Jan Brewer), someone would have proofread the bill before they passed it. This is just more proof that when you add three letters to any bill, S, E, and X, in that order, a spell of Enfeeblement is cast over the legislature and bills pass without a single thought. But hey, it stops revenge porn so that's good, right? What could POSSIBLY go wrong with a hastily passed bill passed by emotional appeals? Read on...


Arizona’s Naked Photo Law Makes Free Speech a Felony
09/23/2014
Freedom of Expression
By Lee Rowland, Staff Attorney, ACLU Speech, Privacy & Technology Project at 12:24pm

Which of the following could land you a felony conviction in Arizona?
  • Showing images of naked prisoners tortured at Abu Ghraib;
  • Linking to the iconic Pulitzer Prize-winning photograph of “Napalm Girl,” showing an unclothed Vietnamese girl running from a napalm attack;
  • Sharing a close-up photo of a woman’s breast with a breastfeeding support group;
  • Waving a friend over to see a cute naked baby pic — like the one you see on this page.


Unfortunately, the answer is all of the above. That’s because Arizona recently passed a law that makes it a felony — and potentially a sex offense — to share any image of nudity or sexuality before you get consent from every person pictured.

Protecting personal privacy is, without doubt, a laudable goal. Indeed, the ACLU works tirelessly to protect your private data. But Arizona’s “nude photo law” is a seriously misguided attempt to achieve that goal. This new crime is broad and confusing. It applies to anyone who shares a nude image, not just to bad actors who intentionally invade another’s privacy. A prosecutor need not demonstrate that a person had an expectation of privacy in an image before charging you with a crime for sharing it. And the law applies equally to a private person’s hacked naked photo and a beautiful nude at a photography exhibit — because the law’s breadth encompasses truly newsworthy, artistic, and historical images.

As a result, the nude photo law creates bizarre and troubling burdens on speech fully protected by the First Amendment.

For proof that this law goes way too far and criminalizes innocent and valuable speech, you need look no further than the august group of bookstores, newspapers, photographers, publishers, and librarians that challenged the law together today (web page on case and complaint). Many of them belong to our stalwart First Amendment allies at the Media Coalition, whose members include the plaintiff associations of publishers, librarians and booksellers. Represented by the ACLU and Dentons US LLP, the plaintiffs just want to be able to offer books, art, news, and history without risking a criminal conviction in Arizona. That doesn’t seem too much to ask.

Proponents of the law indicated that it was intended to address the harms of “revenge porn” — a digital phenomenon typified by a scorned lover who maliciously posts private images of an ex online, often alongside her personal details. The harms of such conduct can be very real, and they predominately impact women. There are true horror stories about women who have suffered extreme humiliation and harassment, had intimate photos sent to relatives and coworkers, and lost job opportunities.

States can address these harms without treading on free speech, if and only if those laws are tailored to addressing malicious invasions of privacy. Arizona’s is not. And we’re not going to blindly trust that the government will apply this broad law responsibly, only against the “bad guys.” The photo above literally illustrates why.

One of the plaintiffs in our lawsuit, the Voice Media Group, publishes the newsweekly Phoenix New Times. The New Times published a series of images from a local art show by Arizona artist and Arizona State University Professor Betsy Schneider. One of the images from that art show is the great image above – documenting a month in Schneider’s infant son’s life.

Maricopa County publicly considered opening a police investigation into the New Times’ publications of these images, after police requested an investigation. A Phoenix city attorney told the press that if the photos were found to be illegal, “Everybody who picked up one those issues [of the New Times] could be prosecuted for possessing child pornography.” That’s what can happen when law enforcement officials wield problematic laws as broadly as they’re written.

The First Amendment just doesn’t permit that kind of carelessness. Laws meant to address real horrors need to do just that – without serving as Trojan Horses that erode our hallowed free speech rights.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Withholding sex and not listening to your lover's feelings count as "sexual violence" at the U. of Michigan

Michigan's football program isn't the only embarrassment to the University of Michigan these days. It seems UM has published a rather strange set of definitions of sexual violence which includes "withholding sex" and "discounting your partner's feelings." So we've reached a catch-22. If you don't have sex you're a sexual assaulter. If you don't talk enough about sex you're a sexual assaulter. If you talk TOO MUCH sex you're a sex assaulter. If you want sex too much you're an assaulter.

Whoever wrote these definitions must also be calling the plays for the Wolverines these days.

http://hr.umich.edu/stopabuse/resources/definitions.html

Physical violence

Includes pushing, shoving, pulling, shaking, slapping, biting, hitting, punching, kicking, strangling, throwing objects at partner, restraining, throwing the partner, use of weapons at hand like a frying pan or broom, or use of conventional weapons such as a gun or knife. Some of these examples may be used by the survivor in self-defense (like use of items at hand) and do not constitute domestic violence or abuse.

Sexual violence

Examples of sexual violence include: discounting the partner's feelings regarding sex; criticizing the partner sexually; touching the partner sexually in inappropriate and uncomfortable ways; withholding sex and affection; always demanding sex; forcing partner to strip as a form of humiliation (maybe in front of children), to witness sexual acts, to participate in uncomfortable sex or sex after an episode of violence, to have sex with other people; and using objects and/or weapons to hurt during sex or threats to back up demands for sex.

Economic abuse

Examples of economic abuse include: requiring partner to account for every penny of household or other funds; withholding money from partner; putting partner on an impossible "budget;" denying partner access to any checking account or credit cards; taking partner's paycheck and controlling access to it; denying necessities of life to partner and children; having own checking and savings account unknown to partner.

Verbal or psychological abuse

Examples of psychological abuse include: insulting the partner; ignoring the partner's feelings; withholding approval as a form of punishment; yelling at the partner; labeling the partner with terms like "crazy," "stupid;" blaming the partner for all his troubles; putting down the partner's abilities as lover, parent, worker; demanding constant attention and showing resentment to children; telling the partner about his affairs or that she must stay with him because she can't make it on her own. All of the examples under "threats" are also included.

http://www.thecollegefix.com/post/19448/

UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN: WITHHOLDING SEX, DISCOUNTING FEELINGS ARE ‘SEXUAL VIOLENCE’
by DEREK DRAPLIN - UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN on SEPTEMBER 25, 2014

Examples of abuse listed on the University of Michigan’s domestic violence awareness website say “sexual violence” includes “withholding sex and affection” and “discounting the partner’s feelings regarding sex” – definitions that have come under fire by some men’s rights activists.

The terms, found under the heading “definitions,” also suggest verbal or psychological abuse include: “insulting the partner; ignoring the partner’s feelings; withholding approval as a form of punishment; yelling at the partner; labeling the partner with terms like crazy [and] stupid.”

Janet Bloomfield, social media director for “A Voice For Men,” an activist group that counters feminist extremism and misandry, took aim at these University of Michigan examples, first on her Twitter account over the summer and more recently in an email to The College Fix.tweet

“These kinds of policies contribute to an increasing level of sexual misconduct hysteria and essentially create a chilling climate for young men,” Bloomfield said. “When things like ‘withholding sex’ and ‘ignoring a partner’s feelings’ are framed as a pattern of behavior that is abusive, they are not only pathologizing normal relationship behaviors, but they are opening the door for vindictive or spurned partners to make allegations that can have profound effects for the accused.”

Currently the higher education world is gripped by the so-called campus rape culture, in which the widely touted yet largely unsubstantiated stat that one in five women will be sexually assaulted or raped while in college is oft repeated during mandated sexual assault seminars at universities nationwide.

On the University of Michigan website, it lists various definitions of abuse as created by a campus coalition called “The University of Abuse Hurts Initiative,” a 2009 undertaking that aimed to stop abuse among students and the campus community.

Its goal is “promoting prevention of and effective response to domestic or intimate partner and sexual violence,” with the tagline: “Abuse Hurts: Recognize. Respond. Refer.”

But interspersed within the typical definitions of abuse – “pushing, shoving, pulling, shaking, slapping, biting, hitting, punching, kicking, strangling, throwing objects at partner, restraining, throwing the partner, use of weapons” – the other examples, such as “discounting the partner’s feelings regarding sex … criticizing the partner sexually … withholding sex and affection,” are found.

Also included in the definition of sexual violence is the example of having “sex with other people.” 

The campaign also gives examples of what’s considered to be “verbal or psychological abuse,” including:  “insulting the partner; ignoring the partner’s feelings; withholding approval as a form of punishment; yelling at the partner; labeling the partner with terms like ‘crazy,’ ‘stupid.’”

It’s not unheard of for sexual violence to be defined so loosely within a campus community.

“Sexual violence is anything that makes someone feel unsafe; it could be catcalls, peer pressure to act a certain way in a situation, verbal harassment and unwanted touching. Many of these things occur daily without anyone giving a second thought to them,” Jami Coughler, program coordinator for the Brock University Student Sexual Violence Support Centre, told the Canada-based campus newspaper this week.

The University of Chicago, on its website, defines an abuser as someone who “has a strong belief in extreme gender roles” and “is jealous and possessive” among more typical forms of abuse listed.

But other campuses only list the generally understood definition of sexual violence on their websites, such as Oregon State University, which defines it as “any non-consensual sexual act. This includes rape, sexual assault, relationship violence, stalking, child sexual abuse, sexual exploitation, sexual harassment, unwanted sexual touching, and attempts of any of these acts.”

As for the definitions given by the University of Michigan, asked by The College Fix whether they are extreme and erroneous, campus spokesman Rick Fitzgerald said they stand when taken in a larger context. 

“The definitions of behaviors of violence … describe most accurately what occurs in an abusive relationship,” he said in an email. “Those behaviors not in the context of violence are not abusive.  A reader of this site would recognize that it’s described as one behavior in the context of a pattern of behaviors to maintain power and control over an intimate partner.”

Bloomfield has a different take on what readers will “recognize” when perusing the website.

“Using the exact same logic and method of reasoning deployed by UMich – namely, that readers will recognize the behaviors within a larger pattern of behaviors – readers will also recognize that victims are implicitly female and perpetrators are male – even though the policy does not explicitly state that,” she said, adding such extreme examples essentially label normal relationship behavior “abuse” and throw men under the bus.

“Normal relationship behaviors are pathologized and framed as abuse when MEN do them,” she noted. “I am unaware of a single case in which the accused student is a woman and the victim is a man.”

As for the topic of the campus rape epidemic, she said she believes campuses are whipping up “rape hysteria” for a variety of reasons.

“It comes down to this: colleges are creating rape hysteria so college employees who run these sexual assault centers can keep their jobs and benefits. Women are encouraged to interpret normal sexual and relationship behaviors as abuse and encouraged to have the young men they are partnering with sanctioned by the college,” she said.

“The end result is that college campuses are becoming increasingly hostile to men and colleges that enact their ‘kangaroo courts and policies’ to deal with sexual misconduct are opening themselves to huge liabilities when the accused and sanctioned men take their claims into a real court and sue for damages,” she added. “They tend to win once due process and the requirement for evidence beyond a reasonable doubt is restored. “

A Voice for Men maintains an ongoing list of such cases. One such lawsuit is pending against the University of Michigan, in which a 21-year-old engineering major claims campus administrators refused to fully consider any of the evidence which he says proves his innocence.

Fitzgerald said the abuse definitions on the website are not used to arbitrate campus sexual assault claims.

The University of Michigan Wagon Wheel of Abuse

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Nicole Pelletier: Proof standards for social workers and Navy servicewomen are very, very low

So how did a crazy lady who breaks into a home to punch an elderly man get a job as a social worker, much less be enrolled in the military? Just how low are entry standards for these two jobs these days? Maybe she was one of the soldiers guarding Abu Ghraib?

http://www.thesmokinggun.com/documents/crime/mom-beat-neighbor-busted-for-child-porn-897561

Cops: Mom Beat Neighbor Busted For Child Porn
Man attacked when he came home after posting bond

SEPTEMBER 25--A mother of two children was arrested after she entered the apartment of a neighbor and punched him in the face because she was incensed that he returned to the Massachusetts residence after being arrested for possession of child pornography.

Nicole Pelletier, a Navy veteran, was busted Monday evening after allegedly attacking Gary Spring, 61, inside his condominium in Danvers, a town 20 miles north of Boston. Pelletier, a licensed clinical social worker, was charged with assault and battery and breaking and entering.

According to a court filing, the 41-year-old Pelletier entered Spring’s apartment through the unlocked front door around midnight and confronted him as he was getting out of bed. “Before he could react she struck him in the face with her hand,” police noted. Spring, a former Merrimack College professor, lives directly below Pelletier and her children, a 13-year-old girl and 11-year-old boy.

Upon arriving at the condo complex, a cop spotted Pelletier walking down the stairs “crying and visibly upset.” She had blood on her hands and right arm. “I went into his apartment and hit him,” Pelletier reportedly confessed. Spring, who suffered a bloody nose, declined medical treatment.

Pelletier, pictured above, herself called 911 to report the assault, telling a police operator that she wanted to kill Spring, cops reported.

Pelletier confronted Spring hours after he was released on $30,000 bond from federal custody. Spring was arrested by FBI agents following a two-month probe that began after Merrimack College officials detected child porn images on a laptop provided to Spring.


Wednesday, September 24, 2014

PA Sen. Pat Toomey sounds official Predator Panic button in time for school

I'm not surprised to see a fluff bill in the national legislature. I'm not personally concerned with stopping a background check bill where most schools run background checks anyways. Nor am I even concerned that Sen. Toomey uses some dubious stats in his speech, failing to mention the fact that his examples are of people who would have passed background checks in the first place. Nor am I surprised that the case that inspired the bill would NOT have been saved by the acts in the bill (Edgar Friedrichs Jr had no record because he was never charged with past wrongdoing). But when you make a statement that "predators are getting their prey" because a national background check bill has not passed, THAT, my friend, is Shiitake-Worthy.

http://www.trentonian.com/general-news/20140909/lawmakers-urge-senate-to-act-on-sex-predator-bill

Lawmakers urge Senate to act on sex predator bill

POSTED: 09/09/14, 6:15 PM EDT | 0 COMMENTS

WASHINGTON (AP) — A group of lawmakers led by Sen. Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania on Tuesday called on the Senate to pass a bill to keep sexual predators out of schools, saying added security checks on teachers, coaches and bus drivers are needed to protect students from potential harm.


Toomey, a Republican, is co-sponsoring a bill with Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., that would require states that receive federal education funds to conduct periodic background checks. It also seeks to bar schools from hiring employees or contractors convicted of certain offenses, such as any violent or sexual crime against a child or drug and assault-related crimes committed within five years.

The House unanimously passed similar legislation last year. But the Senate bill remains unmoved in committee.

“Our children are back to school now. Predators are getting their prey now,” Toomey said. “The Senate needs to act now.” 

He was joined by U.S. Reps. Frederica Wilson, D-Fla., Mike Fitzpatrick, R-Pa., and Steve Stivers, R-Ohio, who led efforts to pass the bill in the House, as well as an array of law enforcement and child advocacy groups.

Toomey cited statistics that since Jan. 1, more than 325 teachers and school employees have been arrested across the U.S. for sexual misconduct with children.

The legislation was prompted by the case of 12-year-old Jeremy Bell, who was raped and murdered in West Virginia in 1997. Edgar Friedrichs Jr. is now serving a life sentence in connection with the boy’s death. Toomey said Friedrichs had been dismissed by a school in Delaware County, Pennsylvania, on suspicion of sexual misconduct. That school then helped Friedrichs land a new teaching job in West Virginia.

The measure has drawn some concern from educators, who say it may violate their privacy. Some Republicans have also expressed concern that the bill amounts to a federal mandate and that states should take the lead on education issues.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

AL: Madison Co. Schools try to set up an entrapment sting but ends up setting up an alleged rape

What do you do when the people entrusted to educate your kids are blithering idiots? I wonder if these "edumacators" got the idea from that idiotic Dateline NBC show, TCAP. If you can't trust police with conducting a proper sting, then how reasonable is a plot where school officials hire a mentally handicapped girl to be bait for a potential rapist?


Plan to use teen as bait leads to rape at school in Alabama, lawsuit alleges
POSTED 7:37 PM, SEPTEMBER 20, 2014, BY CNN WIRE, UPDATED AT 07:41PM, SEPTEMBER 20, 2014
By Victor Blackwell
CNN

(CNN) — It’s an unimaginable horror. A 14-year-old girl with special needs allegedly was raped at school after a teacher’s aide persuaded her to act as bait to catch an accused sexual predator, a fellow student.

“It has essentially devastated her life,” attorney Eric Artrip — who represents the girl and her father — said of the alleged January 2010 incident.

The Department of Justice and U.S. Department of Education filed an amicus brief Wednesday supporting her family’s federal lawsuit against the Madison County School Board in Alabama.

An amicus brief is a legal argument offered to the court by someone who is not a party to the case. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit in Atlanta will decide whether to accept the argument.

“School administrators knew the student’s extensive history of sexual and violent misconduct and were alerted to the substantial risk he posed” to other students, according to the brief.

About a week before the alleged rape, Sparkman Middle School vice principals Jeanne Dunaway and Teresa Terrell received a complaint that the boy had touched a female student inappropriately and was assigned in-school suspension, according to federal attorneys.

A few days later, June Simpson, a teacher’s aide at the Huntsville-area school, told the principal, Ronnie Blair, that the boy had “repeatedly tried to convince girls to have sex with him in the boys’ bathroom on the special needs students’ corridor” and had actually had sex with one student, according to the brief.

The boy and his alleged sexual partner denied having sex in the bathroom, but Simpson recommended the boy be “constantly monitored,” according to the brief. Blair said the boy could not be punished because he had not been “caught in the act,” the brief reads.

School policy requires allegations of student-on-student misconduct be substantiated.

Trying to “catch him in the act”

On January 22, 2010, the boy approached a 14-year-old girl with special needs who had already declined his “recent, repeated propositions” for sex, according to the brief.

“She was not physically or mentally handicapped, although she does qualify for special education classes,” Artrip told CNN.

When the girl told Simpson, she encouraged the girl to “meet (the boy) in the bathroom where teachers could be positioned to ‘catch him in the act’ before anything happened,” according to the brief.

The girl initially refused, but then agreed, according to Artrip.

Simpson and the girl went to Dunaway’s office to explain the plan. Dunaway “did not respond with any advice or directive,” according to the brief.

“If this was problematic for the administration it would have been better to express that on the front end instead of the back end,” said attorney McGriff Belser III, who represents Simpson.

The girl left Dunaway’s office, found the boy in the hallway, and “agreed to meet for sex,” according to the brief.

“Something went wrong,” said Artrip.

Instead of meeting in the boys’ bathroom on the special needs students’ corridor, the boy told the girl to meet him in the sixth-grade boys’ bathroom, in another part of the school, according to the brief.

“No teachers were in the bathroom to intervene,” the brief reads.

“She stalled for time. She continually tried to fight him off but ultimately was anally raped by this young man,” Artrip told CNN.

“It was evident that this had been a severe trauma for her,” said Artrip.

Police were called and the girl was taken to the National Children’s’ Advocacy Center in Huntsville, where a rape kit was taken, Artrip told CNN.

Medical personnel found evidence of trauma “consistent with (the girl) being sodomized.” The boy claimed he had only kissed her, according to the brief.

Attorneys: Boy had a long history of serious misconduct

The girl was uncommunicative after the incident, Artrip said. The district attorney in Madison County investigated the incident, but with a victim who was unable or unwilling to talk about the incident, the office didn’t think they had a good case, and did not pursue it.

Even after viewing photographs of the girl’s injuries, vice principal Terrell “testified that she didn’t know whether (the girl) had consented to the assault,” according to the brief.

The school listed the alleged rape as “inappropriate touching a female in boys’ bathroom,” on the student’s computerized disciplinary report. He was suspended for five days and sent to an alternative school, but later returned to Sparkman after about 20 days, according to the brief.

Vice principal Dunaway testified that the girl was responsible for herself once she entered the bathroom, according the brief.

DoJ and DoE attorneys claim the boy had a long history of sexual and other misconduct in school and Sparkman Middle School administrators knew it. Several pages of the 126-page brief detail years of disciplinary problems.

The boy had been involved in 15 violent or sex-related proven incidents of misconduct before the alleged rape, according to the brief.

Federal attorneys say details about the severity of the incidents are unavailable because school administrators shredded the boy’s disciplinary files.

The girl’s father filed the federal lawsuit in October 2010 against the boy, the three administrators, the teacher’s aide and the Madison County School Board.

“We felt, (that) the teacher putting her into this position, because of the policy as interpreted by the school board and the principal, violated Title IX,” Artrip told CNN.

Title IX is a federal law aimed at ending sexual discrimination in education. In part, it dictates how schools that receive federal funds must respond to claims of sexual harassment.

In 2010, a district court judge allowed the father’s claims of state violations, including negligence, against Simpson and Dunaway, while dropping the boy from the lawsuit because he was a minor. The judge tossed out the federal claims — that the school district violated Title IX and that Simpson and school administrators deprived the girl of her civil rights.

Both sides have appealed.

Fighting for a jury trial

According to the rare amicus brief, written in part by an attorney with the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division, the school, in its capacity as a recipient of federal funds is “liable for [its] deliberate indifference to known acts of peer sexual harassment.”

On the same day the federal brief was submitted, the Women’s Law Center, joined by 32 national and local organizations, submitted a joint brief supporting the family’s lawsuit. Earlier this month, the National Women’s Law Center and Artrip submitted a joint brief to the Eleventh Circuit.

Artrip told CNN his client deserves her day in court and a jury should weigh in on the Madison County District’s requirement of substantiation of allegations of student-on-student misconduct.

“We hope that the attention that this case is getting will spur a movement on these kinds of policies so that a girl can simply report sexual harassment without having a need to bring a witness with her or roll up her shirt and show bruises,” Artrip told CNN.

The girl was withdrawn from Sparkman Middle School and underwent extensive counseling. She went to live with her mother in North Carolina, but her mother died soon after. Instead of moving back to Huntsville, she and her brother were placed with Child Protective Services in North Carolina, the attorney said.

Geraldine Tibbs, the head of public relations for the Madison County Board of Education, said the board and school officials “are confident that the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals will rule in favor of the Board and the administrators.”

“Our attorneys recommend that we not discuss ongoing litigation,” she said.

Ronnie Blair and Teresa Terrell are still principal and vice principal at Sparkman Middle School.

Jeanne Dunaway is now principal at Madison County Elementary School.

June Simpson resigned shortly after the incident.

“My client has gone from being a teacher’s aide to being a scapegoat,” said Simpson’s attorney.

When asked why his client thought it was a good idea to use a special needs teen as bait to catch a suspected attacker, Besler told CNN, “I don’t personally think it is a good idea. The events of this case have shown us that it was not.”

The-CNN-Wire
™ & © 2014 Cable News Network, Inc., a Time Warner Company. All rights reserved.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Texass Sheriff's deputy takes naked pictures of Registered Citizens because "It's the law"

When I first got the news, the tagline read "Florida," not "Texas." I can understand the confusion; after all, Florida is usually the state that gives us stories such as this one.  I guess you can say this was not a "Wise" choice.


Officer arrested for photos of sex offender
By Brian Knox | Published Saturday, September 13, 2014
(Un-)Wise Co. TX Sheriff's Office--
Sgt. Chad Hightower

{{platinum}}}This article contains descriptions that may be offensive to some readers.

A longtime officer at the Wise County Sheriff’s Office has been arrested for improper photography related to convicted sex offenders.

Chad Alan Hightower, 41, of Boyd was charged Friday morning with improper photography or visual recording. He was released after posting $25,000 bond.

According to the arrest warrant affidavit filed by Texas Ranger Ron Pettigrew, Hightower forced a male sex offender to strip naked and be photographed.

The victim came forward and related what had happened to District Attorney Investigator Jack McGuinn. He told McGuinn that after he was released from prison in June, he was required to register as a sex offender. On June 17, he met with Hightower to complete the paperwork, and was told nude photos would need to be taken.

“Deputy Hightower represented this as a change in the sex offender registration required by the state,” the affidavit states.

The victim was taken to a bathroom in the sheriff’s office lobby where he stripped naked, and Hightower took “several photographs from all sides” before telling the victim he could get dressed and leave, the affidavit states.

A month later, the victim had to meet with Hightower again to update his sex offender information. He was told the photos were defective due to a glare, and more would need to be taken. The two got into Hightower’s county vehicle and drove to the county’s impound yard on Farm Road 51 South in Decatur.

There, the statement alleges, Hightower directed the victim into the impound office where he once again was photographed in the nude. The two were the only ones in the building at that time.

“After a short time, Deputy Hightower reportedly advised (the victim) he believed the next thing the State was going to require was photographs of a sex offender’s erect penis,” the affidavit states. “Deputy Hightower asked (the victim) if he could obtain an erection for him, so that the needed photographs could be taken and (the victim) would not have to return in the future for them.”

The victim said he declined the request and was asked an additional “three or four times” before he was told to get dressed. The two returned to the sheriff’s office, and the victim went home.

McGuinn asked the victim to describe the impound office, and he was able to describe details that would only be known by someone who had been inside.

Surveillance video from the sheriff’s office lobby show Hightower with a camera with the victim with actions that are “consistent with (the victim’s) description of events,” according to the affidavit.

Pettigrew was able to collect the SD cards from Hightower’s county camera. Using the assistance of a forensic investigator, images that had been deleted were recovered. Among the images are several that appear to be the victim standing naked against a wood panel wall located in the impound office.

“Pettigrew noted on the above-mentioned media there are several more nude males that appear to be in the same bathroom (the victim) described, others are in the county impound office and yet more in what appears to be a residence,” the affidavit states.

Responding to Pettigrew’s questions, the victim confirmed that Hightower locked the gate of the impound yard behind them. He also said that he would not have consented to the nude photos if Hightower was not a police officer, and he felt compelled to submit to the photographs due to Hightower’s law enforcement position and being told it was state law.

Wise County Sheriff David Walker said he was shocked to learn what took place.

“It’s a shock and a sad day for all of us, especially me, because I have worked with Chad my entire law enforcement career,” Walker said.

Hightower started in 1992 as a dispatcher, became a deputy at the Wise County Sheriff’s Office in 1998 and was promoted to sergeant in 2004, according to a Wise County Messenger feature story on him in July 2011.

Walker said Hightower put in his papers to retire several weeks ago and is on leave until his retirement on Sept. 30.

Friday, August 29, 2014

"Yes Means Yes" California now all but requires a sworn notarized statement before you can have sex

Did these bears get "affirmative consent" first?
I'm not exaggerating by much: The California legislature passed a bill that requires "affirmative consent" before two people can engage in consensual sexual activity. Instead of the old "No Means No," California adopted a "Yes Means Yes" policy. What's the difference?

The Washington Post offers an explanation as to what Yes Means Yes Means:

Under the proposed standard, the fact that a person didn’t say “no” is no defense in a campus sexual assault investigation.

In addition to consenting up front, the bill requires affirmative consent to be “ongoing throughout the sexual activity,” meaning that sexual partners must agree to each step of a sexual encounter as it progresses and consent can be revoked at any time. The standard would apply to all sexual encounters regardless of whether the parties are having a one-night stand or are in a long-term relationship.

One thing the bill doesn’t say is that affirmative consent must be verbal. The bill’s original language warned “relying solely on nonverbal communication can lead to misunderstanding,” but that language was removed as was the requirement that consent be “unambiguous.” Nonetheless, as Slate’s Amanda Hess pointed out, this fact was lost on commentators, some who lamented the standard would redefine most sex as rape and would require students to agree to a verbal or written contract before sex...

While the bill doesn’t spell out what “affirmative, conscious, and voluntary agreement” looks like in practice, it’s very clear what doesn’t count as consent: lack of protest or resistance, silence, unconsciousness or being asleep or too intoxicated to understand what’s going on...

Sexual assault prevention advocates welcomed the bill, which challenges the idea that victims have to resist an assault in order to have a valid complaint. “The survivors [of sexual assault] are going to be positively affected because they are going to be going into a system that no longer asks them why they didn’t do something,” Denice Labertew, the director of advocacy services at the California Coalition Against Sexual Assault, told Inside Higher Ed in June.


But critics say the proposal unfairly burdens those accused of sexual assault. “How does a person prove they receive consent “shy of having it videotaped,” Joe Cohn, the legislative policy director at the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, told Inside Higher Ed. Cohn said the policy reverses the presumption of innocence for the accused, which he called a “dramatic and important shift.”

Here is the actual bill, so you can try to figure it out yourself:

SENATE BILL No. 967

Introduced by Senators De León and Jackson
(Principal coauthor: Assembly Member Lowenthal)
(Coauthors: Senators Beall, Cannella, Evans, Galgiani, Monning, Pavley, Torres, and Wolk)
(Coauthors: Assembly Members Ammiano, Fong, Gonzalez, Quirk-Silva, Skinner, Ting, and Williams)

February 10, 2014

An act to add Section 67386 to the Education Code, relating to student safety.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST

SB 967, as amended, De León. Student safety: sexual assault.
Existing law requires the governing boards of each community college district, the Trustees of the California State University, the Regents of the University of California, and the governing boards of independent postsecondary institutions to adopt and implement written procedures or protocols to ensure that students, faculty, and staff who are victims of sexual assault on the grounds or facilities of their institutions receive treatment and information, including a description of on-campus and off-campus resources.
This bill would require the governing boards of each community college district, the Trustees of the California State University, the Regents of the University of California, and the governing boards of independent postsecondary institutions, in order to receive state funds for student financial assistance, to adopt policies concerning sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking that include certain elements, including an affirmative consent standard in the determination of whether consent was given by a complainant. The bill would require these governing boards to adopt certain sexual assault policies and protocols, as specified, and would require the governing boards, to the extent feasible, to enter into memoranda of understanding or other agreements or collaborative partnerships with on-campus and community-based organizations to refer students for assistance or make services available to students. The bill would also require the governing boards to implement comprehensive prevention and outreach programs addressing sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking. By requiring community college districts to adopt or modify certain policies and protocols, the bill would impose a state-mandated local program.
The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse local agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the state. Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that reimbursement.
This bill would provide that, if the Commission on State Mandates determines that the bill contains costs mandated by the state, reimbursement for those costs shall be made pursuant to these statutory provisions.

BILL TEXT
THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:

SECTION 1. Section 67386 is added to the Education Code, to read:
67386. (a) In order to receive state funds for student financial assistance, the governing board of each community college district, the Trustees of the California State University, the Regents of the University of California, and the governing boards of independent postsecondary institutions shall adopt a policy concerning sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking, as defined in the federal Higher Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. Sec. 1092(f)) involving a student, both on and off campus. The policy shall include all of the following:
(1) An affirmative consent standard in the determination of whether consent was given by both parties to sexual activity. “Affirmative consent” means affirmative, conscious, and voluntary agreement to engage in sexual activity. It is the responsibility of each person involved in the sexual activity to ensure that he or she has the affirmative consent of the other or others to engage in the sexual activity. Lack of protest or resistance does not mean consent, nor does silence mean consent. Affirmative consent must be ongoing throughout a sexual activity and can be revoked at any time. The existence of a dating relationship between the persons involved, or the fact of past sexual relations between them, should never by itself be assumed to be an indicator of consent.
(2) A policy that, in the evaluation of complaints in any disciplinary process, it shall not be a valid excuse to alleged lack of affirmative consent that the accused believed that the complainant consented to the sexual activity under either of the following circumstances:
(A) The accused’s belief in affirmative consent arose from the intoxication or recklessness of the accused.
(B) The accused did not take reasonable steps, in the circumstances known to the accused at the time, to ascertain whether the complainant affirmatively consented.
(3) A policy that the standard used in determining whether the elements of the complaint against the accused have been demonstrated is the preponderance of the evidence.
(4) A policy that, in the evaluation of complaints in the disciplinary process, it shall not be a valid excuse that the accused believed that the complainant affirmatively consented to the sexual activity if the accused knew or reasonably should have known that the complainant was unable to consent to the sexual activity under any of the following circumstances:
(A) The complainant was asleep or unconscious.
(B) The complainant was incapacitated due to the influence of drugs, alcohol, or medication, so that the complainant could not understand the fact, nature, or extent of the sexual activity.
(C) The complainant was unable to communicate due to a mental or physical condition.
(b) In order to receive state funds for student financial assistance, the governing board of each community college district, the Trustees of the California State University, the Regents of the University of California, and the governing boards of independent postsecondary institutions shall adopt detailed and victim-centered policies and protocols regarding sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking involving a student that comport with best practices and current professional standards. At a minimum, the policies and protocols shall cover all of the following:
(1) A policy statement on how the institution will provide appropriate confidentiality for individuals involved in an incident. protections for the privacy of individuals involved, including confidentiality.
(2) Initial response by the institution’s personnel to a report of an incident, including requirements specific to assisting the victim, providing information in writing about the importance of preserving evidence, and the identification and location of witnesses.
(3) Response to stranger and nonstranger sexual assault.
(4) The preliminary victim interview, including the development of a victim interview protocol, and a comprehensive followup victim interview, as appropriate.
(5) Contacting and interviewing the accused.
(6) Seeking the identification and location of witnesses.
(7) Providing written notification to the victim about the availability of, and contact information for, on- and off-campus resources and services, and coordination with law enforcement, as appropriate.
(8) Participation of victim advocates and other supporting people.
(9) Investigating allegations that alcohol or drugs were involved in the incident.
(10) Providing that those an individual who participate participates as a complainant or witness in the an investigation of sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking, either as a complainant or a third-party witness, or stalking will not be subject to disciplinary sanctions for violations a violation of the institution’s student conduct policy at or near the time of the incident if the violations did not place incident, unless the institution determines that the violation was egregious, including, but not limited to, an action that places the health or safety of any other person at risk. risk or involves plagiarism, cheating, or academic dishonesty.
(11) The role of the institutional staff supervision.
(12) A comprehensive, trauma-informed training program for campus officials involved in investigating and adjudicating sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking cases.
(13) Procedures for confidential reporting by victims and third parties.
(c) In order to receive state funds for student financial assistance, the governing board of each community college district, the Trustees of the California State University, the Regents of the University of California, and the governing boards of independent postsecondary institutions shall, to the extent feasible, enter into memoranda of understanding, agreements, or collaborative partnerships with existing on-campus and community-based organizations, including rape crisis centers, to refer students for assistance or make services available to students, including counseling, health, mental health, victim advocacy, student advocacy, and legal assistance, and including resources for the accused.
(d) In order to receive state funds for student financial assistance, the governing board of each community college district, the Trustees of the California State University, the Regents of the University of California, and the governing boards of independent postsecondary institutions shall implement comprehensive prevention and outreach programs addressing sexual violence, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking. A comprehensive prevention program shall include a range of prevention strategies, including, but not limited to, empowerment programming, programming for victim prevention, awareness raising campaigns, primary prevention, bystander intervention, and risk reduction. Outreach programs shall be provided to make students aware of the institution’s policy on sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking. At a minimum, an outreach program shall include a process for contacting and informing the student body, campus organizations, athletic programs, and student groups about the institution’s overall sexual assault policy, the practical implications of an affirmative consent standard, and the rights and responsibilities of students under the policy. Outreach
(e) Outreach programming shall be included as part of new student orientation. every incoming student’s orientation.

This is the future of sex in California. 

Missouri Compromised! Bill to allow prior accusations without convictions to be used as evidence in criminal cases

Is Missouri trying to have a monopoly of dumb laws this year? (This is Missouri's THIRD appearance in the Dumbbest New Law category). Is law enforcement so desperate to add more names to their registry coffers they need to include the equivalent of Facebook rumors in order to try to get a conviction?

"It would also include evidence of past criminal sexual activity even in cases where the defendant was not convicted or not charged with a crime." This sounds a lot like what is known as "hearsay," and hearsay is generally not allowed in court.

It is far too easy to convict someone on a mere accusation these days. Add a false accusation into the mix and the potential for abuse is even greater. Imagine someone acquitted because of a false allegation being accused later by a paranoid neighbor or vindictive ex who knows this person was accused in the past. Don't think it never happens because it does. This bill would assist in convicting innocent men.

This bill compromises the concept of "innocent until proven guilty."

http://ksmu.org/post/law-enforcement-officials-back-ballot-measure-allow-more-evidence-some-sex-crime-cases

Law Enforcement Officials Back Ballot Measure To Allow More Evidence In Some Sex Crime Cases
By MARSHALL GRIFFIN
Originally published on Wed August 27, 2014 1:50 pm

A group of Missouri law enforcement officials have officially endorsed a proposed constitutional amendment designed to make it easier to prosecute sex crimes against children.


Under current law, juries in Missouri can only hear about a defendant's prior offenses during the sentencing phase of a trial, regardless of the type of crime committed. If passed, Constitutional Amendment Two would allow evidence of prior criminal acts to be admissible in cases where the defendant is accused of a sex crime against someone younger than 18. It would also include evidence of past criminal sexual activity even in cases where the defendant was not convicted or not charged with a crime. Eric Zahnd is prosecuting attorney for Platte County.


The federal government (and) other states specifically allow this information to be provided to juries, but because of a couple of Missouri Supreme Court decisions, Missouri juries hardly ever get to know that a sexual predator may have abused other children in the past … and in my opinion that’s wrong," Zahnd said.


Amendment Two, originally known as House Joint Resolution 16, was initially approved by Missouri lawmakers during the 2013 legislative session. Earlier this year Gov. Jay Nixon ordered it placed on the November ballot.


"It's wrong to make children who have been through some of the most horrific sexual abuse you can imagine go it alone with a jury," Zahnd said. "Juries deserve to know the full story, the full truth, about a sexual offender."


http://www.sedaliademocrat.com/news/news/50214006/Local-authorities-endorse-change-in-sex-crime-evidence#.VACe3MRDuUY

The group says Missouri is more restrictive than any other state, barring prosecutors from telling jurors about prior criminal sex acts in nearly all cases against accused child predators. This came about in a 2007 Missouri Supreme Court decision, which struck down a similar law that was already in place.

Pettis County Prosecuting Attorney-Elect Phillip Sawyer said Amendment 2 is about getting the statute that was ruled unconstitutional by the Missouri Supreme Court, a statute he has used before, back on the books.


“We had a statute in place that provided for it. We have gotten to the point now where we are one of the most restrictive states as it pertains to letting priors in,” Sawyer said. “When you are dealing with a prior in that type of case and you want to implement that in a new trial, you’re talking about somebody who has become a predator.


“I think that justice should always prevail. I certainly was a fan of that statute and I used it before prior to the case law coming out that voided us using it.”...


Listen to the justification by Victim Industry Advocates:

Carolyn Green, Executive Director of Child Safe of Central Missouri Inc., a local child advocacy group, said the organization is behind the amendment “100 percent.” “We have had, more than once, the same perpetrator on several children,” Green said. “If you have a 5-year-old who can’t give a good disclosure, and you can’t bring in the fact that this man has also been accused by four other children of perpetrating on them, you might lose that case on the 5-year-old if you can’t bring in those prior acts.”

Beth Jackman, a forensic interviewer and program manager with Child Safe, said it is statistically proven that sex offenders often have more than one victim. “Even in self-reporting from the alleged offenders the numbers could run easily into the hundreds. I think it could be very beneficial to our cases if someone has been convicted previously that it be important to the case we are working on at that time,” Jackman said....


The proposed amendment overwhelmingly passed the Missouri General Assembly in May and will amend the Missouri Constitution as follows:


“Section 18(c). Notwithstanding the provisions of sections 17 and 18(a) of this article to the contrary, in prosecutions for crimes of a sexual nature involving a victim under eighteen years of age, relevant evidence of prior criminal acts, whether charged or uncharged, is admissible for the purpose of corroborating the victim’s testimony or demonstrating the defendant’s propensity to commit the crime with which he or she is presently charged. The court may exclude relevant evidence of prior criminal acts if the probative value of the evidence is substantially outweighed by the danger of unfair prejudice.”


It will now go to the voters for consideration in November as a ballot question as follows:


“Shall the Missouri Constitution be amended so that it will be permissible to allow relevant evidence of prior criminal acts to be admissible in prosecutions for crimes of a sexual nature involving a victim under eighteen years of age? If more resources are needed to defend increased prosecutions additional costs to governmental entities could be at least $1.4 million annually, otherwise the fiscal impact is expected to be limited.”


http://www.therepublic.com/view/story/ef3fa1e0f57b4c9e84ca8b41a73ee703/MO--Child-Sex-Abuse-Amendment

If approved by Missouri voters in November, Constitutional Amendment 2 could make it more difficult for defendants to persuade juries and judges of their innocence, said Kim Benjamin, a Belton attorney who is the past president of the Missouri Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers.

"You're now defending your entire life, your entire reputation, rather than this one act," she said. "It causes a tremendous risk for more people to be wrongly convicted."


One of Benjamin's most prominent clients was Burrell Mohler Sr., the patriarch of a western Missouri family who was accused along with his four sons of sexually abusing young relatives over many years. The charges ultimately were dropped in March 2012, after Mohler had spent more than two years in jail while awaiting trial.


The Missouri ballot measure would essentially undo a December 2007 decision by the Missouri Supreme Court, which struck down a state law allowing evidence of past sexual crimes to be used against people facing new sex-related charges involving victims younger than 14.


The court said in that ruling that "evidence of prior criminal acts is never admissible for the purpose of demonstrating the defendant's propensity to commit the crime with which he is presently charged."


The Legislature voted last year to refer the proposed constitutional amendment to the 2014 ballot.


Prosecutors say it would bring Missouri's evidence standards closer to federal ones. Under a 1994 federal law, courts may allow evidence of other sexual assaults or molestations of children younger than 14 to be used against defendants facing those charges. Those federal evidentiary rules have been upheld in several appellate court decisions.


Prior allegations are allowed to be used as evidence in child sex abuse cases by 11 states, according to a 2012 report by the Missouri Office of Prosecution Services.


Supporters of the Missouri ballot proposal have formed a campaign committee with the hopes or running advertisements for it, though the group had barely $1,300 in its account as of the end of June.


Benjamin said defense attorneys have not organized a campaign against the amendment, because she said they lack the money to do so.