Friday, February 21, 2014

Missouri House Bill No. 1741 will subject out-of-state registrants to a civil commitment evaluation

Missouri HB 1741 is a weird bill that implies a possible constitutional violation. Below is a summary of the bill.

"This bill specifies that a conviction in this state or any other jurisdiction for a sexually violent offense can be considered when determining if a person is a sexually violent predator for purposes of confinement and treatment." 

The full text of the bill can be found HERE:

So, what does this bill mean? Well, if you are convicted of an offense in another state that Missouri considers a sexually violent offense, and if you commit a "recent overt act," and you come to Missouri, you could be detained pending a civil commitment.

What is a "recent overt act"?

5. For the purposes of this section "recent overt act" means any act that creates a reasonable apprehension of harm of a sexually violent nature.

So what is a "sexually violent offense"?

"Sexually violent offense", the felonies of rape in the first degree, forcible rape, rape, statutory rape in the first degree, sodomy in the first degree, forcible sodomy, sodomy, statutory sodomy in the first degree, or an attempt to commit any of the preceding crimes, or child molestation in the first or second degree, sexual abuse, sexual abuse in the first degree, rape in the second degree, sexual assault, sexual assault in the first degree, sodomy in the second degree, deviate sexual assault, deviate sexual assault in the first degree, or the act of abuse of a child involving either sexual contact, a prohibited sexual act, sexual abuse, or sexual exploitation of a minor, or any felony offense that contains elements substantially similar to the offenses listed above...

So the bill is a bit confusing. At first glance, it seems the bill only seems to apply to someone who is currently incarcerated.

But the fact that Missouri is looking to civilly commit ANY registrant, no matter the circumstances, when the conviction is NOT a Missouri conviction is just plain stupid.

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