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SCOTUS: Indefinite Lockup Of Sexual Criminals OK

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SCOTUS: Indefinite Lockup Of Sexual Criminals OK

Old 05-17-2010, 07:55 AM
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Default SCOTUS: Indefinite Lockup Of Sexual Criminals OK

The US Supreme Court has ruled that sexually dangerous criminals may be locked up indefinitely.


http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100517/...x_offender_law


WASHINGTON – The Supreme Court ruled Monday that federal officials can indefinitely hold inmates considered "sexually dangerous" after their prison terms are complete.

The high court reversed a lower court decision that said Congress overstepped its authority in allowing indefinite detentions of considered "sexually dangerous."

"The statute is a 'necessary and proper' means of exercising the federal authority that permits Congress to create federal criminal laws, to punish their violation, to imprison violators, to provide appropriately for those imprisoned and to maintain the security of those who are not imprisoned by who may be affected by the federal imprisonment of others," said Justice Stephen Breyer, writing the majority opinion.
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Old 05-17-2010, 08:32 AM
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Rush just raised a great point. If we're allowed to hold those people we feel are still dangerous sexual predators indifinitely, why can't we do the same for terrorist?
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Old 05-17-2010, 08:33 AM
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Lock them up permanently so that the only ones they'll have to prey on is each other? Somehow I'm not having a problem with that.
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Old 05-17-2010, 09:03 AM
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There's more info in the article and it does make you wonder. I despise child molesters but would also not want to see some "administrative process" administered abd decided by prison authorities to usurp our current legal system. Further into the linked article, it talks about a civil commitment and doesn't give more detail. I think it would be proper if there was some sort of court civil hearing wherein a DA proves to the judge that such a permanent prison sentence is appropriate, the accused has the right to object and a judge makes a final decision.

That may be what the civil commitment process entails but this article doesn't provide that information. It should have but didn't. Typical halfway reporting.

And yes, I know that most child molesters will never change BUT I also see a slippery slope if this takes away basic rights for one group of people because it would set a bad precedent for the rest of us. It starts with child molesters, then other criminal groups, then "subversives" or anti-government types or, gasp, tea partiers, etc. IMHO, this is something that needs to be done properly so it doesn't jeopardize other groups or set a bad precedent.
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Old 05-17-2010, 09:16 AM
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Originally Posted by CalHunter View Post
There's more info in the article and it does make you wonder. I despise child molesters but would also not want to see some "administrative process" administered abd decided by prison authorities to usurp our current legal system. Further into the linked article, it talks about a civil commitment and doesn't give more detail. I think it would be proper if there was some sort of court civil hearing wherein a DA proves to the judge that such a permanent prison sentence is appropriate, the accused has the right to object and a judge makes a final decision.

That may be what the civil commitment process entails but this article doesn't provide that information. It should have but didn't. Typical halfway reporting.

And yes, I know that most child molesters will never change BUT I also see a slippery slope if this takes away basic rights for one group of people because it would set a bad precedent for the rest of us. It starts with child molesters, then other criminal groups, then "subversives" or anti-government types or, gasp, tea partiers, etc. IMHO, this is something that needs to be done properly so it doesn't jeopardize other groups or set a bad precedent.
This procedure is already in place here in Michigan pending the Supreme Court approval. What it means is that if the sex offender is still considered a threat once the period of incarceration has ended, he (or she I suppose) can be committed to a mental health facility for extended treatment. It's based on the premise that this type of offense arises from a mental disorder. Groups such as subversives and some of the people who post here might seem a bit wacky, but their behavior would not meet the criteria of a psychiatric disorder.

We'll have to see how it goes, whether it works or not.
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Old 05-17-2010, 02:28 PM
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Originally Posted by Fieldmouse View Post
Rush just raised a great point. If we're allowed to hold those people we feel are still dangerous sexual predators indifinitely, why can't we do the same for terrorist?
I think we should lock them up with Terrorist! Let the party begin!!
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Old 05-17-2010, 04:00 PM
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It starts with child molesters, then other criminal groups, then "subversives" or anti-government types or, gasp, tea partiers, etc. IMHO, this is something that needs to be done properly so it doesn't jeopardize other groups or set a bad precedent.
I find it interesting that you thought it through that far. The qualifying phrase "done properly" is where we could get to a point that we do not implement what needs to be done out of fear of a domino effect. While I agree that we do not want to be flippant, I consider it a long leap to go from hard-core sex offender to those of a certain political persuasion.

But then, you can't go my me. I consider sex offenses, especially those against minors, to be generally worse than assault and therefore deserving of fierce punishment.
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Old 05-17-2010, 04:53 PM
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When they came for the Jews, I didn't speak up because I was not a Jew, When they came for the ............

So who decides who else they can hold forever?

Last edited by James B; 05-17-2010 at 04:57 PM.
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Old 05-17-2010, 06:07 PM
  #9  
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We really need some sex offender reform, we have teenagers becoming sex offenders for texting(sexting) or hooking up with their girlf from hs(senior/freshmen sorta deal), big difference between the hs kid and the 50yo pedophile with an 8yo.

A National Age of Consent might help inform young people of the law too. In one state a 50yo could hook up with a 16yo legally and in another a 20yo with a 17yo would be illegal and land him on the sex offender registry, and a convicted felon.
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Old 05-17-2010, 07:53 PM
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I fear the implications will stretch to healthcare reform. The Court has expanded the 'necessary and proper' clause against a sexual predator intentionally so it won't raise many eyebrows.

When government healthcare reform reaches the Court on appeal, they have just given themselves additional precedent to cite in an ends-justify-the-means approach.
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