Monday, December 17, 2018

Rachel DePompa and NBC12 Virginia is seriously doing their readers "hard" with their sweeps week scare story

This sweeps-week article in itself is Shiitake -worthy, but that typo "do them HARD" is the best screw-up I've seen for a while. To make matters worse, the article was updated two days later and the typo is still there!

Sex offenders find ways to ‘skirt’ Facebook’s ban
Social network launches investigation, responds to findings

By Rachel DePompa | December 12, 2018 at 4:00 PM EST - Updated December 14 at 7:57 AM

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - One-and-a-half billion users are on Facebook every day. And among those profiles are people who are not allowed to be on the platform, according to Facebook.

Those are people like 56-year-old Robert Gale Wojda, of Richmond’s Northside. Wojda has been convicted of child exploitation offenses in Florida, Ohio and Virginia.

“Part of his probation was that he was no supposed to be on social media of any kinds, whatsoever," said Richmond Police detective Mary Gary Ford. And yet there he was using Facebook to engage in sexually explicit conversations with minors. “Thankfully his probation officer just checked and she found a Facebook profile for him with his photo and you could tell he was actively like posts."

According to Ford, court filings and the Virginia Attorney General’s office, Wojda admitted to sending explicit photographs through Facebook. Ford actually spoke with Wojda and got his consent to search his phone. On it she found sexual conversations with a 14-year-old girl in Georgia.

“It was a very traumatic experience for her and she was isolated and alone and kind of containing all this inside herself for along time,” added Ford. She says Wodja is far from the only predator using social media.

“The frightening part is the number of people doing what they’re doing and that’s just what’s being reported,” said Ford.

Facebook has a specific policy that bans convicted sex offenders, but in less than two hours NBC12′s investigation easily tracked down 16 different registered sex offenders in Virginia with what appeared to be active Facebook profiles. NBC12 only searched halfway through the letter "c" in the alphabet on the sex offender registry.

NBC12 found offenders of all races and of varying ages all with profiles active within the last year. Some of their criminal records included labels like “sexually violent offender.”

The investigation found offenders convicted of “rape” in Henrico County. Others convicted of “carnal knowledge of children as young as 13” and even a person accused of “enticing a minor to perform in pornography.”

Facebook immediately launched an investigation and disabled the accounts after NBC12 reported the findings.

A spokesperson said, “Facebook’s Terms of Service explain that we prohibit convicted sex offenders from using Facebook and disable accounts that violate this policy as soon as we’re aware. We respond to reports from our community but also take action and disable these accounts when we identify them ourselves. We disabled the accounts you shared as soon as we confirmed they were in violation of our terms of service.”

“You never know who you’re talking to on the other side of the computer,” said Briana Valentino, a forensic interviewer with Greater Richmond SCAN (Stop Child Abuse Now). “Kids are very accessible to people who mean do them hard.”

She often interviews the children abused by predators. And more often than ever before, she finds the abuse started online.

“What we tend to see for kids who’s experienced trauma online, it’s a lot of internalized behavior. Feelings of guilt, feelings of shame. That they are the one’s that have done something wrong,” said Valentino.

Ford often works with SCAN and is investigating multiple active cases in Central Virginia. She has the unenviable job of talking to child predators like Wojda.

“He indicated that looking at adult pornography just doesn’t do it for him," Ford said.

Wodja ultimately pleaded no contest to electronic solicitation of a minor and is now serving 20 years in a Virginia prison. His capture is a victory for investigators like Detective Ford.

But she knows there are more predators out there. That’s why she needs parents to help and have age-appropriate, non-judgmental conversations with their children and teens.

“They this is something that could happen. If it does, just stop what you’re doing, come to me. Talk to me. we’ll work it out together. You’re not in trouble," said Ford.

Ford says there are steps you can take to be proactive.

First, don’t let children have their phones in their bedrooms at night. And consider this rule: tablets and computers should only be used in open areas of the house.

Also parents should research and know the apps that are out there and what’s currently popular with teens.

To report a sex offender on Facebook click on this link. The site says you’ll need to provide one of the following types of information with your report:

A link to a listing in a national or state sex offender registry.
A link to an online news article.
A link to a court document. 

Thursday, December 13, 2018

Cyrano's Theatre Co. in Anchorage AK set to fire RC after Internet trolls stir up controversy

It is a shame to see anyone give a second chance to someone but then buckle to social media backlash. Social media is a mental illness.

Cyrano's Theatre Co. will drop an actor who is a registered sex offender after social media backlash

By Rebecca Palsha | Posted: Tue 3:52 PM, Dec 11, 2018  |  Updated: Tue 4:48 PM, Dec 11, 2018
ANCHORAGE (KTUU) - A registered sex offender who performs with Cyrano's Theatre Co. will no longer be acting with the company.

Jenson Seifert lists Cyrano's as his employer on the state's sex offender registry.

He is a former teacher at Birchwood Christian School who was charged, and later served time, for sexually abusing a minor.

At the time, police accused him of molesting a 14-year-old boy repeatedly, including while he was a chaperoning a youth outing.

Cyrano's says Seifert has been a performer with the company for about a year and that it was encouraged to work with him after he successfully performed at other places in Anchorage.

"He was doing all that was asked of him, which does not negate or condone his crime in any way, and we were very clear in our communications with him, and he also with us, but he has made all of the steps to work toward rehabilitation and second chances," Teresa Pond, the Producing Artistic Director at Cyrano's said. "And we felt that warranted an opportunity, again based on the fact that he had already had success working in theaters and being successful, with a second chance."

But on the theatre's Facebook page a debate ignited about how transparent Cyrano's was and if Seifert should be able to perform with the company.

Alaska Theater of Youth, which had a pop-up camp last week at Cyrano's, says it was unaware of his involvement. ATY says it was assured that Seifert had no contact with any of the children at the camp.

"That was my main concern. The children's safety, was my first priority," Hanna Bankston with ATY said.

Tuesday afternoon, Cyrano's updated its Facebook page and said registered sex offenders will be prevented from working at Cyrano's in any capacity.

"We know the community would prefer that we don't have someone who is on the sexual offender registry in our shows, and that is absolutely fine," Pond said. "We support all of those people those who have been victims, anybody who has found this to be difficult and upsetting, and that's far more important to us."

Seifert is in a production with Cryano's that will run two more weeks. Pond said he will continue in those plays but they will be his final performances.

If you want to post your disapproval of the Theater's decision, the link is here:

Thank you to the many community members who have reached out to engage with us in direct dialogue over the past few days. The voices we have heard from our community of artists makes it clear that a change going forward is warranted.

We remain committed to our mission, which includes ensuring that we provide a safe and trusting place for our community to create and experience art. We neglected to communicate clearly to some members of our Cyrano’s community and their families, that an individual, previously convicted of a sex offense, was serving as an actor in a Cyrano’s production. Of the voices we heard during this process, some had concerns for the safety of their families, and the ability of Cyrano’s to maintain that safe and trusting environment. We are deeply sorry.

After a thorough review, we have identified a need for change. For future productions, the Board has implemented a policy which will prevent anyone listed on Alaska’s sex offender registry from working at Cyrano’s in any capacity. This is not the end of our work on this matter, and we will continue to engage in dialogue on the best ways to forward our mission and serve the community we all love.

Cyrano’s Theatre Company

Monday, December 10, 2018

Floridiot Edward Bowman wants legislation to ban registrants from hospitals

What is it with Floridiots talking long walks to pass bad legislation. You want to take a long walk? Take it on a short pier.

Man pushes for laws to keep sexual predators out of hospitals
Dec 7, 2018 | 31 comments

75-year-old Edward Bowman is pushing legislators to create a law, “Clara’s Law”, to be named after his late wife Clara Mae, that would ban sexual predators (not sure whether the term “predator” is used to distinguish the different classification or if it’s used by him synonymously with “offender”) from nursing homes, hospitals and medical facilities all over the country.

In 2006, Edward’s late wife was sexually assaulted by a male nurse and he has been on a crusade since to get a law passed in her memory. This year, he is going to walk 237 miles from Mount Dora to Tallahassee, to meet with Florida lawmakers.

While Mr. Bowman has a sad and compelling story, he’s missing the mark on some facts.

Firstly, the nurse who assaulted his wife was not on the registry. Therefore, “Clara’s Law”, had a version been in effect back then, would have done nothing to protect Clara.

Secondly, the overwhelming majority of sexual assaults are committed by first time offenders. If another patient is assaulted by a healthcare worker, there’s a 97% base chance that it would be by someone not on the registry, further reduced by the fact that it’s unlikely that a hospital worker with such a criminal history would be working in a capacity where they could assault a patient, making the odds negligible.

Third, the unintended negative consequences of a law that would ban registrants from hospitals, would be that they would be prevented from visiting with loved ones, including their own children (see:,,

Bowman has been pushing for a “Clara’s Law”, in one form or another, for over a decade. Prior versions would have required healthcare facilities to report incidents of sexual misconduct (not convictions, but reports) to the state Health Department and potentially a national clearinghouse, but those measures failed.

We can understand Mr. Bowman’s desire to memorialize his wife, but banning an entire class of former offenders from hospitals – the effect of which could be to prevent children facing scary medical procedures from the comfort of their parent – is not going to do Clara any justice.

Saturday, December 8, 2018

Al­le­gheny Co PA Com­mon Pleas Judge Donna Jo McDaniel gets booted from resentencing hearing of SO

An appeals courts rules against your court ruling and remands the case for resentencing. What do you do? If you're Donna Jo McDaniel, you respond by making the same ruling in defiance. This worthless excuse of a judge needs to be removed from the bench.

Superior Court removes Allegheny County judge from sex offender's resentencing 

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
 NOV 28, 2018

The state Su­pe­rior Court, in a rare move Wed­nes­day, or­dered Al­le­gheny County Com­mon Pleas Judge Donna Jo McDaniel to be re­moved from a case, find­ing that there was “sub­stan­tial ev­i­dence” that she “demon­strated bias and per­sonal an­i­mus” against both the de­fen­dant and the pub­lic de­fender’s of­fice rep­re­sent­ing him.

The three-judge panel of the ap­pel­late court wrote a blis­ter­ing 13-page opin­ion that also or­dered that An­thony McCau­ley be sen­tenced again by a new judge. It is one of a se­ries of opin­ions by the Su­pe­rior Court dat­ing to Jan­u­ary 2017 in which Judge McDaniel has been ques­tioned for her sen­tenc­ing of sex of­fend­ers.

“The trial court’s an­i­mus and hos­til­ity to ap­pel­lant’s coun­sel and the [Al­le­gheny County] Pub­lic De­fender’s of­fice ap­pears to be deep, un­wav­er­ing and dem­on­strates an un­jus­ti­fied bias against the Pub­lic De­fender’s of­fice,” wrote Su­pe­rior Court Judge Alice Beck Dubow.

The Su­pe­rior Court also crit­i­cized Judge McDaniel for us­ing in­ap­pro­pri­ate sar­casm in her writ­ten opin­ion; for de­ny­ing McCau­ley a fair and con­sti­tu­tional sen­tenc­ing hear­ing; and for fail­ing to fol­low pre­vi­ous Su­pe­rior Court or­ders, there­fore wast­ing ju­di­cial re­sources.

Ordered to redo an 'unreasonable' sentence, judge responds by imposing the exact same punishment. In a foot­note, the ap­pel­late court also chas­tised her for in­clud­ing the full name of the child vic­tim in McCau­ley’s case in her opin­ion.

“Not only do we dis­ap­prove of this prac­tice, but it is also con­trary to [Penn­syl­va­nia law], which makes it a crim­i­nal of­fense for an of­fi­cer or em­ployee of the court to re­veal the name of a mi­nor vic­tim of sex­ual abuse in doc­u­ments avail­able to the pub­lic,” Judge Dubow wrote.

Although the pros­pect of re­fer­ring Judge McDaniel to the Ju­di­cial Con­duct Board was raised by the pros­e­cu­tion dur­ing oral ar­gu­ment on McCau­ley’s case in April, the Su­pe­rior Court opin­ion does not men­tion the dis­ci­plin­ary or­ga­ni­za­tion.

Judge McDaniel could not be reached for com­ment.

Amie Downs, the county’s spokes­woman, de­clined com­ment on be­half of the pub­lic de­fender’s of­fice.

The most re­cent case to bring scorn from the Su­pe­rior Court was an ap­peal of a sec­ond sen­tenc­ing pro­ceed­ing for McCau­ley, 45. He was con­victed in 2014 of rape and years-long abuse of a girl.

Ini­tially, Judge McDaniel sen­tenced McCau­ley to 20 to 40 years in prison. On ap­peal, McCau­ley’s de­fense at­tor­ney ques­tioned whether that pen­alty was man­da­tory or dis­cre­tion­ary.

The Su­pe­rior Court sent the case back to Judge McDaniel in Oc­to­ber 2016 and told her to clar­ify that ques­tion.
At re­sen­tenc­ing in Decem­ber 2016, she did not ad­dress that is­sue, the court found, and in­stead changed the pen­alty only slightly — to 20 years less two days to 40 years less four days.

Judge McDaniel did not al­low McCau­ley to speak, did not re­view a new pre-sen­tence re­port for him, and did not pro­vide any of the due pro­cess that is re­quired for a crim­i­nal sen­tenc­ing, the Su­pe­rior Court con­cluded.

That prompted new ap­peals from the pub­lic de­fender’s of­fice, which rep­re­sented McCau­ley, and a re­quest that Judge McDaniel re­cuse her­self.

She re­fused.

In its opin­ion Wed­nes­day, Su­pe­rior Court wrote that it did not like Judge McDaniel’s be­hav­ior in the case.

“In par­tic­u­lar, the trial court’s opin­ion is filled with gra­tu­itous com­ments den­i­grat­ing ap­pel­lant’s coun­sel and the Pub­lic De­fender’s of­fice,” the panel wrote.

The three judges said they be­lieve she made a “veiled threat” ques­tion­ing the at­tor­ney’s and of­fice’s cred­i­bil­ity and im­plied that their con­tin­ued ap­peal of her sen­tence could be “harm­ful to other crim­i­nal de­fen­dants who may ac­tu­ally have mer­i­to­ri­ous claims.”

The panel also crit­i­cized Judge McDaniel for sar­casm it said she used in her opin­ion.

“This sar­casm is dis­re­spect­ful to ap­pel­lant, coun­sel and the se­ri­ous­ness of the sen­tenc­ing pro­cess,” they wrote.

Four times in the opin­ion, the panel said it was ei­ther “trou­bled” by Judge McDaniel’s ac­tions or found them “trou­bling.”

The court cited her fail­ure to fol­low its in­struc­tions on re­mand, in­clud­ing on two sex of­fender cases in which she was or­dered to re­sen­tence the de­fen­dants and gave them the same pen­al­ties she’d pre­vi­ously im­posed.

“This has re­sulted in an ex­ten­sive de­ploy­ment of ju­di­cial re­sources to re­view, an­a­lyze, and rec­tify the court’s de­fi­cient sen­tenc­ing hear­ings,” the panel wrote.

In both of those cases, Judge McDaniel sen­tenced the de­fen­dants to twice what guide­lines rec­om­mended.

At both hear­ings, Judge McDaniel said from the bench that she con­ducted a statis­ti­cal anal­y­sis of her cases from 2012 to 2016, claim­ing that her sen­tences for sex of­fend­ers were com­pa­ra­ble to those of other judges.

In its opin­ion Wed­nes­day, the Su­pe­rior Court noted that Judge McDaniel did not in­clude any of her anal­y­ses in the cer­ti­fied record, mak­ing it im­pos­sible for the panel to con­sider her con­clu­sions.

Still, it con­tin­ued, “a statis­ti­cal anal­y­sis would not com­pel a dif­fer­ent re­sult.”

Pres­i­dent Judge Jef­frey A. Man­ning said late Wed­nes­day that he had not seen the opin­ion and could not com­ment on it.

“Judge McDaniel is an ex­tremely bright and ded­i­cated judge who has for many years pro­tected the rights of the ac­cused and at the same time guarded the rights of the vic­tims and wit­nesses in very se­ri­ous, of­ten vi­cious, sex of­fender cases which can spark sig­nifi­cant dis­agree­ment be­tween coun­sel and the court,” Judge Man­ning said.

“I will re­view the opin­ion and abide by the law­ful or­ders of the ap­pel­late court.”